Wednesday, 29 August 2012
Racing, Italian Style
Photo by kind permission of Thierry Martinez
"Is your boat tied down?" "Yes".
(Boat flies through the air as 60 knots of wind hit the dinghy park)
"Your boat is not tied down!!"(Shouted this time, not spoken..)
"That is not my boat"
And so a touch of Pink Panther style humour ended an excellent Moth World Championships!
Stand out performances came from Anthony Kotoun who sailed into 4th place overall, Tom Offer who came in 15th, and of course Josh McKnight who decided to win. And did!
This World Championship was an experience for sure, in all aspects actually, and whilst one might argue that the qualifying goes on too long, in the same way that Christmas seems to go on too long these days, there is no denying the new levels of excellence that the top boys have taken the class to.
We used to have the 20 knot club only 5 years ago and now the front runners are hitting 17 knots upwind, and its clear that despite the more evolutionary development of late, the boats are going faster and faster in a way that no other class can or does. What a great time to be sailing Moths.
And whilst we at Mach2 came equipped with the excellent Simon Owen Smith and a couple of crates full of spares, there was probably less breakage than one might have imagined. There would have been even less if the start line wasn't so chancy.
Its clear that the new KA MSL16 has taken the rig to the next level too and that Mach2 Moths remain the leaders choice. Another great regatta for us which of course makes us very proud.
For me? Well I was pleased to make 9th overall and achieve 2nd in the European Championships. I'm looking forward to working with Andrew on a new rig for the lightweight sailor and I take back all I ever said about adjustable wands, and I'm going to get one of those soonest!
I loved the last day! Sometimes we get into thinking that we shouldn't sail when its too light or too windy, but we must remember that we are a sailing class that foils, not a foiling class that sails and in years to come we'll cruise round in those winds and waves, but only because we are going out in them today.
Very many congratulations to Josh. He sailed superbly and said, as does every winner, that his overwhelming emotion was one of "relief". As he was waving the Aussie flag I remembered that feeling from 2010. Not any delirious happiness at that stage just sheer simple relief. He will be an excellent World Champion and I suspect he is the youngest ever. Time for plenty more.
The UK fleet did OK! If we can figure out how to work together better, a great strength of the Aussies and the Americans, then we can get more than two boats in the top 10 for sure!
Right now I still feel exhausted. A by-product of giving it my all, and a long drive home. I may not manage rigging the boat tonight, but I probably will the day after!