Australia dominated the skiff fleets at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne. A strong northerly breeze met athletes at Sandringham Yacht Club for the final day. With gusts over 20 knots there were thrills and spills aplenty on the Stadium course as fans gathered on the Yacht Club balcony to enjoy the spectacle.
In the 49erFX the points table was the tightest of all the classes with four crews separated by just seven points.
With her former match racing teammate, Nina Curtis, winning gold in the Nacra17, Olivia Price was not to be outdone in the 49erFX. Going into the day in second position, Price and crew Eliza Solly were clear winners of the Medal Race and with other teams struggling in the gusty conditions they made gold theirs.
“Today was really fun, I like the wind and the shifty stuff,” said Price. “The trick was to keep it fast through all the pressure and keep it upright. It’s really good to win a World Cup and to win it on home soil is really quite special” said Price after the race.”
“It has definitely been a steep learning curve. We are going a lot quicker and I’m starting to feel more comfortable. It’s been a lot of fun so far and we keep learning new things every day.”
Haylee Outteridge and Ella Clark (AUS) were second overall with Norwegian twins Ragna and Maia Agerup finishing the Medal Race third to take bronze.
London 2012 Olympic gold medalists Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen wrapped up a successful day for the Australian Sailing Team by taking the win in the 49er.
Going into the Medal Race with a healthy 15-point lead they confirmed that they are back on track for another Olympic campaign.
“It’s nice to be back in the boat and to be back in what we know to do best,” commented Nathan. “The real message to the rest of the fleet will probably come when we head to Europe next year and continue doing what we’ve been doing over the last four years.”
“It’s always tough to defend something, for example, if it’s a World Title it’s hard to defend it at the next World Champs. But to defend an Olympic gold medal is a lot harder, you have to keep it up for four years. We will have to campaign the same way we did last time, while assuming that everyone has become better. That’s what we are looking forward to doing.”
David Gilmour and Sam Phillips (AUS) held onto their silver medal position whilst Will Phillips and Rhys Mara (AUS) snatched the bronze from British team of Stevie Morrison and Chris Grube.