Three New Junior World Champions Crowned!

I Just Want to Beat the Boys!

”I just want to get out there and beat the boys,” said Vilma Bobeck (SWE). That was her mood this morning as leader of the 49erFX World Championship, and second overall in the open 49er Class Championship.

Unfortunately for her and team mate Malin TENGSTRÖM, they would never get the chance to complete any more races, as the championship finished without any completed races on the final day. They were one of two teams who didn’t capsize in the first lap of the race that was ultimately abandoned.

“Last year on the windy days at Worlds in Porto we capsized at least two times every windy race. This year we only capsized once each in three races, so that’s progress!” continued ‘Bobeck. The young duo from Sweden were also lightening fast in a straight line and started well.

We’ve been working with the Swedish team and Paul Brotherton as coach for some of the last year, when the senior sailors are in Europe and we can fit into the squad’s plans. “Next year we don’t want to capsize at all!”

The 49erFX compete on the water as an open class, but the World Title and podium positions goes to the top female teams, while the open competition, which includes the male and mixed teams complete for the class championship.

Winning the open class championship was Keanu PRETTNER, Niklas HABERL (AUT).

Ronja GRÖNBLOM and Sara EHRNROOTH (FIN) finish second and Willemijn OFFERMAN with Judith ENGBERTS (NED) finish third in the 49erFX World Championship.

Continued Italian Dominance in the Nacra 17

Gianluigi Ugolini & Maria Giubilei (ITA) just won the 2018 Junior World Championship for the Nacra 17! They won the only race today, ultimately winning 6 of the 7 races that were run for the Nacra 17 and were clearly the class of the field. Upwind the racing was typically quite close, but the Italians had a read edge downwind, and the only race they didn’t win was the first super windy race of the regatta.

Their dominance is even more outstanding given they are both U21 sailors, and therefore have two more years of eligibility at the Junior level.

The Federazione Italiana Vela, Italian National Team, clearly has something to be proud of in their Nacra 17 fleet. Italian sailors have now won all three major titles in 2018, Worlds, Euros, and Juniors! World Sailor of the Year candidates, Ruggerto Tita and Caterina Banti took a clean sweep of the season, winning every regatta they entered.

The Nacra 17 fleet was small here in Marseille, with the championship not yet established and a few of the younger teams off in Japan, but it is certainly diverse! The eight boats come from seven nations and four continents.

Tayla RIETMAN and Lachlan WHITE (AUS) were the only team to take a race win from the Italians, and relished the strong home-style conditions. “We’re so happy to be here in warm and sunny Southern France. Back home it’s a bit rough right now, so any chance to get out and race in such great conditions is fantastic,” said Tayla!

In third place were Javier ARRIBAS HARTEN with Adriana BARRON (PER), representing the team farthest away from home, battled hard and were very happy with their racing. Peru is hosting the 2019 Pan Am games and they plan on racing there and continuing on with their campaign, picking up the Peruvian 49erFX team to travel and work with next season.

Gianluigi UGOLINI, Maria GIUBILEI (ITA) lit up on the beat!

Two Max Strength Races Decide 49er JWC

Irish Champs bombing downwind!
The only fleet to get out this afternoon was the 49er Gold Fleet, as the Mistral that has been with us the past three days continued at full strength. Six teams were within eight points of the leader at the start of the final race, so saying it was anyone’s regatta is no understatement!

Robert DICKSON and Seán WADDILOVE (IRL) sealed the victory by winning the last race. The overnight leaders started at the boat, caught the first shift off the cliffs and after a couple more tacks up the beat consolidated and extended in victory to seal the championship.

Locked in a tie after the series, it is  Max STINGELE and Linov SCHEEL (GER) that edged out Daniel NYBORG and Sebastian WRIGHT OLSEN (DEN) based on winning the countback on the strength of their gold fleet win in the first race of the day.

The German had the best day on the water, with a 1, 5, and were all smiles after coming back to shore. In between the two races, when it was still unclear if the RC would run a second race or not, skipper Max could be seen physically ramping up his energy level with a series of shouts and leg slaps to be sure hey was up for the occasion.  They were not able to replicate their commanding win from the first race, but sailed very well when it mattered most.

Third place is a decent consolation prize for the Danes but they will be kicking themselves for an error in the first race that cost them the championship. In third place down the first run they capsized in their gybe.  They weren’t overly under pressure, and they probably make that gybe 7 times out of 10, but not that time.
They were not the only contenders to capsize in the moment, as so did fourth overall’s Bart LAMBRIEX and Scipio HOUTMAN (NED). It took them an age to get the boat back upright, and they could only recover to 15th, a hammer blow since they already had a 19th on their scorecard while the rest of the fleet all had lower discard races.

There were no moments of rest for any of the fleet for the duration of the session. The breeze and seas were right on the limit for the afternoons racing, but ultimately most the gold fleet acquitted themselves nicely in the challenging conditions.


How This Championship Will Be Remembered

This wraps up the 2018 Junior World Championship in Marseille France. The championship will be remembered for it’s challenging conditions, huge fleets, and for the highly competent hosts.

With Mistral conditions for the final three days, these teams have shared in the common challenge of being pushed to the limit by conditions in racing that matters. There is no doubt that years from now, when these teams are less fresh and young than today they will still be swapping stories of the hard ways they learned to get around the course here in Marseille.

If the Olympic regatta upcoming in 2024 needed to be run next month, this group could pull it off. Over 100 skilled and experienced volunteers run a base that is set up well for dinghy racing. At the opening ceremony the athletes were promised a completely transformed host venue, and no doubt there will be extensive work done, but the bones of the place are fantastic, as are those that run it.

Next Up

The 2019 edition of the Junior World Championship will be in Risor, Norway in the week following Kieler Woche.

The senior age sailor in 49er are about to begin the Test Event and Sailing World Series Enoshima at the 2020 Olympic venue in Japan.

Nacra 17 Top 5 – Full Results
1            ITA         Gianluigi UGOLINI, Maria GIUBILEI          6
2            AUS       Tayla RIETMAN, Lachlan WHITE              13
3            PER        Javier ARRIBAS, Adriana BARRON         22
4            GBR       Benno MARSTALLER, Chloe COLLENETTE 26
5            RUS       Olesia ZHYKOVA, Maksim SUDACHKOV 27

49erFX Top 5 – Full Results – Women Only
1            SWE      Vilma BOBECK, Malin TENGSTRÖM          30
2            FIN         Ronja GRÖNBLOM, Sara EHRNROOTH    43
3            NED       Willemijn OFFERMAN, Judith ENGBERTS  51
4            POL        Aleksandra MELZACKA, Kinga LOBODA   52
5            DEN        Johanne SCHMIDT, Andrea SCHMIDT        56

49er Top 5 – Full Results
1            IRL         Robert DICKSON, Seán WADDILOVE        32
2            GER       Max Stingle, Linov Scheel                           39
3            DEN      Daniel Nyborg, Sebastian Olsen                  39
4            NED       Bart LAMBRIEX, Scipio HOUTMAN            42
5            NOR      Tomas MATHISEN, Mads MATHISEN         45

49erFX Top 5 – Full Results – Open
1            AUT       Keanu PRETTNER, Niklas HABER              20
2            SWE      Vilma BOBECK, Malin TENGSTRÖM           30
3            POR        Tomás BARRETO, João PRIETO                39
4            FIN         Ronja GRÖNBLOM, Sara EHRNROOTH     43
5            NED       Willemijn OFFERMAN, Judith ENGBERTS   51

Who’s your Sailing Hero?

We ask these junior future stars who their hero’s are in the sport?
The 2018 (U23) Junior World Championship in Marseille. Follow all the action via –

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