Saturday, 22 May 2010

Preview of Women’s Match Racing event at the 2010 Delta Lloyd Regatta in Medemblik, The Netherlands

Women's Match Racing at the 2010 Rolex Miami OCR. Image copyright Walter Cooper/US SAILING.

by WIMRA media

Twenty four teams from nineteen countries are registered to compete in the Women’s Match Racing event at the 2010 Delta Lloyd Regatta in Medemblik, The Netherlands next week. This will mark the most countries represented at a SWC event this year.

The tough field includes 7 of the top 10 in the ISAF Women’s World Match Racing rankings. Adding to the excitement, the event in Medemblik will see the debut of teams from China and Poland in the Sailing World Cup match racing circuit.

Registered Skippers:
Lucy Macgregor (GBR), ISAF Rank = 1
Katie Spithill (AUS), ISAF Rank = 3
Silke Hahlbrock (GER), ISAF Rank = 5
Anne-Claire Le Berre (FRA), ISAF Rank = 6
Nicky Souter (AUS), ISAF Rank = 7
Julie Bossard (FRA), ISAF Rank = 8
Anna Kjellberg (SWE), ISAF Rank = 9
Renee Groeneveld (NED), ISAF Rank = 14
Cristiana Monina (ITA), ISAF Rank = 20
Silja Lehtinen (FIN), ISAF Rank = 21
Silvia Roca (ESP), ISAF Rank = 25
Juliana Mota (BRA), ISAF Rank = 28
Ekaterina Skudina (RUS), ISAF Rank = 33
Stephanie Hazard (NZL), ISAF Rank = 41
Mary Rook (GBR), ISAF Rank = 46
Sofia Bekatorou (GRE), ISAF Rank = 51
Jennifer Provan (CAN), ISAF Rank = 52
Vesna Dekleva (SLO), ISAF Rank = 54
Mandy Mulder (NED), ISAF Rank = 60
Tihana Tadinac (CRO), ISAF Rank = 76
Támara Echegoyen (ESP), ISAF Rank = 84
Katarzyna Pic (POL), ISAF Rank = 132
Skipper to be confirmed (DEN), ISAF Rank = ?
Ru Wang (CHN), ISAF Rank = unranked

Delta Lloyd Regatta

WMRT: Match Race Germany Update, Day One Highlights Video and Crew List

2008 World Match Racing Tour Champion, Ian Williams (GBR) is back on top form at Match Race Germany 2010 on day two. Torvar Mirsky (AUS) and Mathieu Richard (FRA) are challenging Williams after their top positions on day one

Bowman from Team GAC Pindar and Radich Racing Team during spinnaker manoeuvres on day 1 Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Torvar Mirsky appeals for a penalty in his match against Jesper Radich on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Ian Ainslie and crew on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Torvar Mirsky crosses behind Magnus Holmberg on day 1 of Match Race Germany 2010. World match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

by SailRaceWin

There are two Kiwi match race teams at Match Race Germany - BlackMatch Racing and Waka Racing (the latter with skipper Phil Robertson on tactics for Ian Ainslie's (RSA) Team Proximo, and three other crew members sailing with Magnus Holmberg's (SWE) Victory Challenge team). There are also two Aussie teams: Torvar Mirsky's Mirsky Racing Team and Peter Gilmour's YANMAR Racing.

James Williamson (NZL) of Victory Challenge keeps his weight low in light conditions on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Kiwi and Aussie sailors are on half the boats competing at Match Racing Germany, carrying on the tradition of strength in this discipline from these two countries. BlackMatch Racing (NZL) won the World Match Racing Tour in 2010, while Mirsky Racing Team (AUS) finished in third place.

Mirsky Racing Team bowman Graeme Spence during light conditions on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Both the top Kiwi and Aussie teams put points on the scoreboard at Match Race France, but were not at the top of their game. Mathieu Richard (FRA) beat Ben Ainslie (GBR) to take the first, French, stage of the Tour in 2010. Richard has carried on his good form at Match Race Germany, with Mirsky also picking up here, to share the top of the leaderboard part-way through the round robin on 5 wins apiece at the end of day one. Conditions on day one in Langenargen were damp with not much wind.

Mathieu Richard finished day one on top of the pile - where he left off from stage one in France. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

On day two at Match Race Germany, there is more wind, warmer temperatures and Britain's Ian Williams, the 2008 World Match Race Tour champion has come out of hibernation to, at time of writing, have 7 wins to Mirsky and Richard's 6 and 5 wins, respectively. Minoprio (NZL) and Gilmour (AUS) also have 5 victories on the water at present.

Mark Williams of Team GAC Pindar keeps an eye on Paolo Cian at the start of their match on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Meanwhile, Kathrin Kadelbach (GER), the first woman to compete at Match Race Germany, with Olympic Yngling sailor Ulrike Schumann as tactician, scored one win on day one and has another to match it on day two.

Kathrin Kadelbach (L) and Ulrike Schumann (R). Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Day One highlights video of Match Race Germany 2010. Copyright World Match Racing Tour 2010. Production: Red Handed TV.

Magnus Holmberg (SWE)(L) and Sam Bell (NZL) prepare to round the leeward mark on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Crew List for Match Race Germany

Adam Minoprio (NZL) ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing
Crew: Dave Swete, Tom Powrie, Nick Blackman, Dan McLean

Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team
Crew: Graeme Spence, Tudor Owen, Kyle Langford, Kinley Fowler

Björn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team
Crew: Mathias Bredin, Martin Strömberg, Pontis Meijer, Gustav Morin

Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing
Crew: Martin berntson, Nils Bjerkäs, Yasuhiro Yaji, Cristian Pontin

Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team
Crew: Greg Evrard, Thierry Briend, Erwan Vanier, Yannick Simon

Ian Ainslie (RSA) Team Proximo
Crew: Nicholas Heinz, Roger Hudson, Adam Martin, Phil Robertson

Paolo Cian (ITA) Team Italia
Crew: Pier Luigi Fornelli, Enrico Zennaro, Gaetano Figlia Di Granara, Philippe Buchard

Mads Ebler (DEN) Ebler Match Racing
Crew: Niels Kinch, Chris Keene Pedersen, Jonas Hviid, Soren Tonder

Kathrin Kadelbach (GER) EWE Sailing Team
Crew: Wolfi Dietz, Rigo De Nijs, Jens Polgar, Ulrike Schumann

Magnus Holmberg (SWE) Victory Challenge
Crew: Sam Bell, Garth Ellingham, matt Randell, James Williamson

Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar
Crew: Bill Hardesty, Mal Parker, Simon Shaw, Mark Williams

Jesper Radich (DEN) Radich Racing Team
Crew: Jan Neergaard, Rasmus Kostner, Nils Gramkov, Philip Guhle

Torvar Mirsky's crew keep an eye on Magnus Holmberg during their match on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Nick Blackman (L) and Dave Swete (R) of BlackMatch Racing during their match against Kathrin Kadelbach. World Match Race Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Phil Robertson (NZL) of Team Proximo during a spinnaker drop on day 1 of Match Race Germany. World Match Racing Tour. Image copyright Gareth Cooke/Subzero Images/WMRT.

Match Race Germany
World Match Racing Tour

LVT: Teams gather for opening ceremony

Ten international sailing teams, including three from the host nation Italy, will gather on the waterfront at the Porto Arsenale in La Maddalena this evening for the opening ceremony of the Louis Vuitton Trophy La Maddalena

Louis Vuitton Trophy La Maddalena. Image copyright Bob Grieser/ Vuitton Trophy.

by Peter Rusch

A cannon shot and the raising of the Italian national flag by an honour guard comprised of Italian navy sailors accompanied by representatives of all ten teams will signal the official opening.

The Mediterranean’s famous mistral has eased and the ceremony will take place in soft, warm evening breezes after a hot, sunny, cloudless day. The now-traditional press conference will follow on the adjacent stage that is set below the outdoor jumbo television for public viewing.

The teams will race on four equalised America’s Cup Class boats supplied by the event – ITA 90, ITA 99, USA 87 and USA 98. Two of the boats, flying event flags and banners, were moored at docks flanking the flag-raising ceremony.

Eight countries are represented amongst the ten competing teams. The teams are:

Aleph, FRA, skipper Bertrand Pace
All4One, FRA/GER, skipper Jochen Schümann
Artemis, SWE, skipper Paul Cayard
Azzurra, ITA, skipper Francesco Bruni
BMW ORACLE Racing, USA, skipper James Spithill
Emirates Team New Zealand, NZL, skipper Dean Barker
Luna Rossa, ITA, skipper Ed Baird
Mascalzone Latino Audi Team, ITA, skipper Gavin Brady
Synergy, RUS, skipper Karol Jablonski
TEAMORIGIN, GBR, skipper Ben Ainslie

Mrs Liliana Lorettu will welcome the sailors and the sponsors on behalf of the region. Admiral Spagnuolo of the Italian navy will speak, as will Yves Carcelle, president of Louis Vuitton.

On board with ALL4ONE training off La Maddalena. Image copyright Paul Todd/ Vuitton Trophy.

Speaking before the ceremony, Vincenzo Onorato, Chairman of Mascalzone Latino Team, said with a smile: “To host the Louis Vuitton Trophy La Maddalena was my idea and, standing here today, for once in my life I must say I was right. I’ve known this area well, since I was a kid and when I saw the new Arsenale I was pleasantly aware it is the best place possible to host a Louis Vuitton Trophy. We can expect light winds this weekend but after that, anything can happen.”

Paul Cayard, Chairman of the World Sailing Teams Association and skipper of the Swedish boat ARTEMIS, paid special tribute to the Italian teams. "Italy is passionate about sailing and the America's Cup,” Cayard said. “As evidence of this interest, three Italian teams are racing here; Luna Rossa, AZZURRA and Mascalzone Latino Audi Team. Sardinia is an iconic Italian venue for sailing and I am confident that the Louis Vuitton Trophy will be a spectacular event."

Emirates Team New Zealand won the Louis Vuitton Trophy Auckland but skipper Dean Barker was cautious about his team’s chances, despite a victory last week at the Audi MedCup in Cascais, Portugal. “La Maddalena is an interesting venue,” Barker said. “Race courses will be laid inside a number of islands so we are expecting conditions to be tricky. We will be racing in two Mascalzone Latino and two BMW Oracle Racing boats. For the past two days we have spent some time learning how to sail them. Conditions have ranged from extremely light to heavy; bright sunshine to thunder, lightning and heavy rain.
The challenge for us is to discover in a short space of time just what makes these boats go . . . and what they don’t like.”

American Ed Baird, sailing for a new team as skipper of the Italian team Luna Rossa, said: “These boats are great. They make for close racing and it’s going to be exciting competition. We have a real blend of people sailing on our team this week and it’s going to be fun to learn some new styles. We know there are a few teams that are on top of the heap right now. Emirates Team New Zealand is very strong. The BMW Oracle guys are very good. Mascalzone Latino had a good event in Auckland. Azzurra is sailing very well this year. We have a big hill to climb to catch up to those guys in a short amount of time.”

Francesco Bruni, skipper and helmsman of Azzurra, said: “We just completed three great days of training, with variable wind conditions, including some violent thunderstorms which caught us head on! We noticed that all the teams went into these training sessions with great determination, pushing to the limit and taking many risks, which confirms the great level of experience of all the crews. The scenery in La Maddalena, as expected, is absolutely stunning. The mood of Team Azzurra is high. We are confident that we did all we could to be prepared for this event and we are eager to start racing. The guys are excited, the group is strong and we have just the right amount of adrenalin to start."

Complete coverage, including live streaming Virtual Eye tracking of each race of the Louis Vuitton Trophy La Maddalena is available at

Racing is scheduled to start each day with a warning signal at 10:00 local time (GMT+2).

Louis Vuitton Trophy

Extreme 40s: One Week to Go To 'Kick-Off' of 2010 Extreme Sailing Series

ECOVER racing off Cowes in 2009. Image copyright Anne Hinton, all rights reserved.

by Emily Caroe

Whilst football fans around the world obsess about the selection of their World Cup national squad, all bar one of the Extreme 40 teams have now confirmed their 'squads' for the 2010 Extreme Sailing Series that kick-offs in a week's time on the south coast of France at Sète from 27th-30th. Eight international teams will be on the start line to battle it out over five events across Europe this summer. At the mercy of the on-water referees, the teams racing their high-speed 40' catamarans will be hoping to avoid any 'sending offs'! But on race courses that on average only equal the size of six football pitches, the teams are constantly engaged in close combat that frequently result in punishable infringements.

Across the fleet of 32 sailors there are two double Olympic Gold medallists, 61 World and 37 European Championship titles, 20 Round the World navigations, 20 America's Cups sailed and 39 sailing records held or broken amongst the 14 nationalities.

Three top French skippers will be taking the helms of Extreme 40s this year - Franck Cammas, Yann Guichard and Loick Peyron. Franck Cammas, fresh from his Jules Verne Trophy record-breaking circumnavigation, will drive Groupama 40. Cammas will be joined by former America's Cup sailor Tanguy Cariou (FRA) as his tactician: "We've spent the winter capturing the Jules Verne Trophy with an amazing team onboard Groupama 3, and so Groupama 40 looks pretty small!" Cammas joked. "But we like these close-quarter regattas. Our business is all about sailing so, big or small, in a team, or alone, it's not important. It's all about the sailing."

Experienced offshore multihull sailor, Yann Guichard will once again be helming the Gitana Team entry, Groupe Edmond de Rothschild. Guichard finished an impressive second last season: "2009 was the year we discovered the Extreme Sailing Series and the style of Extreme 40 regattas: the notion of sport as a spectacle! We soon learnt that consistency pays and to perform well in this series and to post good results, you need to navigate really well and not have any on-the-water contact with your competitors."

Oman Sail Masirah with Loick Peyron at the helm. Image copyright Mark Lloyd/Lloyd Images/Oman Sail.

The final French skipper is 'Mr Multihull' himself, Loick Peyron who recently helmed Alinghi in the 33rd America's Cup. Peyron has 'jumped ship' from one Oman Sail Extreme 40 to the other and for 2010 will skipper and helm Oman Sail Masirah. Peyron will be joined by the 2009 skipper, now trimmer and team manager, Pete Cumming (GBR). The Sultanate of Oman, as in the previous seasons, has a second entry in the circuit with The Wave, Muscat, skippered by British talent Paul Campbell-James (GBR). An experienced matchracer, 'CJ' demonstrated his aggressive starting talent on the winter Asia tour. Joining him will be the first Omani who has progressed through the Oman Sail Academy and now racing as a professional sailor, Khamis Al Anbouri (OMA).

Crew action on board Oman Sail Masirah. Image copyright Mark Lloyd/Lloyd Images/Oman Sail.

Following his debut in the inaugural Asian Extreme Sailing Series, double Olympic Gold Medallist Roman Hagara (AUT) will be joined by his Olympic crew Hans-Peter Steinacher (AUT) for the Red Bull Extreme Sailing entry. Racing alongside Hagara will be Gabriele Olivo (ITA) and David Vera (ESP), both of whom participated in the last Volvo Ocean Race with the Spanish Telefonica team. Red Bull Extreme Sailing boasts a good balance between offshore and inshore racing experience and talent and will be strong contenders for a podium position.

Red Bull. Image copyright Mark Lloyd/Lloyd Images/DPPI/OC Events.

Veteran Extreme 40 sailor, Nick Moloney (AUS) is back as skipper of the new entry Team GAC Pindar. From the America's Cup to the solo Route du Rhum and Vendée Globe, and the Jules Verne Trophy, Moloney has seen it all! Helming the British entry Team GAC Pindar is British Tornado sailor Andrew Walsh. Joining them will be Fraser Brown (NZL), another very experienced Extreme 40 player and Team Pindar's Olly Smith (GBR): a promising combination of talent.

ECOVER training on the Solent for the 2010 series. Image copyright Mark Lloyd/Lloyd Images/ECOVER.

Finally, one of Great Britain's most accomplished single-handed sailors ever, with two IMOCA World Champion titles, a third in the solo Vendée Globe, Mike Golding returns to the circuit with an all-British line up in the Ecover Sailing Team. Golding will receive a shot in the arm from the combined Olympic Tornado talents of Leigh McMillan, Team GBR's catamaran helmsman at both the Athens and Beijing Olympics, and Will Howden. Golding commented: "Training has gone really well. Will and Leigh have a great synergy onboard, so it has been a very smooth process working in the role changes. 2009 was a learning curve for all of us, and I hope this year will see us raise the bar in terms of performance on the water. Leigh will be fantastic on the helm, and we intend to make an impact on the leaderboard this season".

Extreme 40 fleet in Europe in 2009. Image copyright Th. Martinez/Sea&Co/OC Events.

And with just one final team racing under the flag of The Ocean Racing Club in Slovenia, due to announce early next week, there will now be eight teams on the start line: "It's a hugely impressive line-up again this year, the quality and depth of experience of the sailors increases year on year and guarantees us some spectacular action," said Event Director, Gilles Chiorri. With more days racing than ever before, the four-day events will challenge every aspect of tactics, speed and finesse for the top international sailors.

Extreme Sailing Series Europe

Extreme 40s: Team GAC Pindar enter Extreme Sailing Series

Extreme 40s racing off Cowes in the 2009 series. Image copyright Anne Hinton, all rights reserved.

by Team Pindar media

Leading independent sailing company, Team Pindar, has joined forces with Dubai-based global logistics provider GAC, to form a ‘Team GAC Pindar’ entry in this year’s European Extreme Sailing Series, which begins in Sète, Southern France on 27 May, 2010.

The dual entry will race under a British flag and will be skippered by Australian all-round yachtsman and experienced Extreme 40 sailor, Nick Moloney. Nick has competed in the series since it began in 2007 and boasts a rich and successful sailing career, including 2 America’s Cup campaigns and 12 individual World Sailing Speed Records. He will be joined by three other accomplished international sailors - Britons Andy Walsh (helmsman) and Olly Smith (bowman), plus New Zealand yachtsman, Fraser Brown (trimmer).

Now in its fourth year, the Extreme Sailing Series is owned and managed by OC Events and is one of the most exciting events on the sporting calendar. It unites some of the world’s best sailors at stunning locations, where they compete on spectacular, high-speed 40-ft catamarans. The simple race format allows spectators to follow the action up-close from the shoreline and a select few are offered the chance of enjoying an adrenalin-packed ‘5th Man’ passenger-ride alongside the professionals.

Director of Team Pindar, Nick Crabtree commented, “The Extreme Sailing Series combines all that is exciting about sport and offers some fantastic marketing and hospitality opportunities at key territories around Europe. We are delighted to be joining a world class line-up and are looking forward to some exciting and competitive racing.”

Team Pindar has operated as an independent sailing company since 2008. It has been actively supporting sailing campaigns for the past 30 years, including entries on the IMOCA 60 circuit, the World Match Racing Tour and individuals at grassroots levels through to the very pinnacle of the sport.

This is the first time the team has entered the Extreme Sailing Series. Its partner for the jointly-managed ‘Team GAC Pindar’ entry is the global logistics provider GAC, which delivers a complete range of international supply chain and logistics solutions, including air and sea freight, warehousing and distribution, road transportation, project logistics, ship spares logistics, international moving and courier services.

Captain Peter Gronberg, Managing Director of GAC (Bahrain) said: “We have been working closely with Team Pindar over the last year on its Sail Bahrain project and it has become clear that there are a number of synergies and business opportunities for a sailing team and a shipping and logistics service provider to work together. We are thrilled to be partnering the team in the Extreme Sailing Series, as we look to extend our niche maritime services into the European market.”

Team Pindar has named international environmental organisation Earthwatch as its nominated charity, to help raise awareness of its oceans research programme, which comprises projects around the world, studying coastal ecosystems and threatened marine species.

The 2010 Extreme Sailing Series begins on May 27 in Sète, France before visiting four other European destinations: Cowes (UK), Kiel (Germany), Trapani (Italy) and Almeria (Spain).

Team Pindar
Extreme Sailing Series Europe

LVT: ALL4ONE Ready for Louis Vuitton Trophy - La Maddalena!

ALL4ONE training off La Maddalena. Image copyright Frank Socha/

by Stephanie Nadin

Just a few days after their second place on the first competition of the Audi MedCup Circuit 2010 in Portugal, the French-German team led by Jochen Schümann, Sebastien and John Cutler is now in the starting blocks for the Louis Vuitton Trophy - La Maddalena, starting tomorrow on the incredible race course of La Maddalena, in the North of Sardinia, for two top level racing weeks (22 May-6 June).

After having just landed with their direct flight from Cascais on Monday morning, the ALL4ONE crew members trained the whole week with the 9 other teams competing in the event, representing the best professional sailing teams in the world (Emirates Team New Zealand, BMW Oracle Racing, Luna Rossa, Artemis, Synergy, Aleph, Mascalzone Latino, Azzurra and TeamOrigin), racing on board USA 87 and USA 98 (BMW Oracle Racing's boats), and ITA 90 et ITA 99, (Mascalzone Latino's boats), which are the two pairs used for this competition. Each pair of boats is equalized to offer a fair competition on even America's Cup Class boats.

The competition format is the same as the one used in the America's Cup, that is to say match racing races, offering fantastic duels to the public.

The competition will start with a Round Robin where all teams will race each other, followed by two elimination rounds, semi-finals and final.

ALL4ONE training off La Maddalena against Luna Rossa. Image copyright Frank Socha/

Jochen Schümann, ALL4ONE's Skipper and Sports Director: "we made good progress and had a couple of interesting practice situations against other teams like Luna Rossa and others this week. The conditions in Sardinia between the islands will be very challenging, because it is not really stable, and that makes it quite interesting with these huge boats to sail here between the rocks. We also now have two top teams joining the competition (Luna Rossa et BMW Oracle Racing), so that makes it even more challenging. Our goal is the same than in the previous Louis Vuitton Trophy Nice and Auckland, and we will fight to reach the semi-finals."

ALL4ONE finished 5th at the Louis Vuitton Trophy - Nice and 5th at the Louis Vuitton Trophy - Auckland.

The ALL4ONE team for Louis Vuitton Trophy - La Maddalena will be formed of:

Jochen Schümann GER - Skipper and Strategist (3 America's Cup campaigns, 2 wins, 3 times Olympic Gold Medalist, and 1 Silver Olympic medal)
Sebastien Col FRA - Helmsman (2 America's Cup campaigns, French Match Racing Team)
John Cutler NZL - Tactician (5 America's Cup campaigns, Olympic Bronze Medalist)
Philippe Mourniac FRA - Navigator (3 America's Cup campaigns, multihull)
Michi Müller GER - Mast (1 America's Cup campaign, Volvo Ocean Race)
Matti Paschen GER - Spinnaker Trimmer (1 America's Cup campaign)
Jean-Marie Dauris FRA - Bow (2 America's Cup campaigns)
Christophe André FRA - Mid-bow (1 America's Cup campaign, French Match Racing Team)
Albert Jacobsoone FRA - Pit (7 America's Cup campaigns)
Gilles Favennec FRA - Pit Assist (2 America's Cup campaigns, French Match Racing Team)
Carlo Castellano ITA - Grinder (3 America's Cup campaigns)
Jorge Ondo ESP - Grinder (1 America's Cup campaign)
Virgilio Torrecilla ESP - Afterguard Grinder (2 America's Cup campaigns)
Christian Scherrer SUI - Jib Trimmer (4 America's Cup campaigns, 1 win, Whitbread)
Peter van Niekerk NED - Mainsail Grinder (2 America's Cup campaigns, 2 wins)
Yann Gouniot FRA - Mainsail Trimmer (5 America's Cup campaigns, 1 win)
Olivier Douillard FRA - Traveller (2 America's Cup campaigns)

Racing is live everyday on and

Finn World Masters: Preview

Finn sailing in Split, Croatia. Supplied image.

by Robert Deaves

Having only just said goodbye to the 97 Finns at the European Championship, YC Labud in Split, Croatia is now beginning to welcome even more Finns for the 2010 Finn World Masters, which will open at the weekend.

The preliminary entry list includes 190 sailors from 23 nations. Though down on last year's record entry of 264, this is still up 60 boats on the last time the event was held in Split, in 2002.

Some of the Masters also took part in the Europeans last week as well to familiarise themselves with the wind and the local conditions, though we hope the Masters are more lucky with the weather than the Junior and Senior sailors were last week.

The favourite has to be the three times winner and defending champion Andre Budzien (GER) though 2006 winner Michael Maier (CZE) is also on the preliminary entry list and should provide a strong challenge.

While it is always hard to predict winners at the Masters, previous form would indicate that the likes of Jürgen Eiermann (GER) - runner up last year; Mihail Kopanov (BUL), runner up in 2008; and Allen Burrell (GBR) - third in 2005 and 2007 are also likely to be serious challengers.

Finn World Masters venue 2010. Supplied image.

Split also has a strong local Finn fleet, which has been putting in a lot of time on the water, so they will be keen to capitalise on their training and local knowledge.

Measurement and registration opens Friday is followed by the first races on Monday 24 May with eight races scheduled until Friday 28 May.

Finn World Masters

Finn Europeans: Prizegiving and Image Gallery

Prizewinners on the podium at the Finn Europeans: L-r Daniel Birgmark (SWE, 3rd overall), Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (CRO, 1st overall) and Ed Wright (GBR, 2nd overall). Supplied image.

Close racing at the windward mark during the Finn Europeans 2010. Supplied image.

by Robert Deaves

Last Sunday night outside YC Labud in Split, Croatia, local hero Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic received the Finn European Championship trophy for the second year running. After third placed Daniel Birgmark (SWE) and runner-up Edward Wright (GBR) had ascended the podium, Gaspic arrived in a RIB, commando style, from the depths of the marina amid a fanfare of loud music, flares and applause, and flamboyantly launched himself from the RIB onto the podium as the music thumped away. It was a spectacular entry to the medal ceremony and a fitting end to a successful championship, despite the wind and weather problems.

Gaspic arrives commando-style at the awards ceremony. Supplied image.

Just before this, the awards were presented to the three top Juniors, Ioannis Mitakis (GRE), Luke Lawrence (USA) and Caleb Paine (USA).

The three top Juniors: l-r: Caleb Paine (USA), Ioannis Mitakis (GRE) and Luke Lawrence (USA). Supplied image.

After the speeches and presentations and finished, the Deputy Mayor of Split, Ms Andelka Viskovic, closed the 2010 Finn Open Junior and Senior European Championships.

Dan Slater (NZL) finished 11th at the Finn Europeans 2010, just missing out on the medal race. Supplied image.

Next year the Finn European Championship is being held in Helsinki, Finland.

Ideal Finn sailing weather. Supplied image.

Finns Sail at Sunset

Racing continued into the sunset. Supplied image.

Davourlis Panagioris (GRE). Supplied image.

Racing into the sunset. Supplied image.

The fleet at sunset. Supplied image.

Competitors at the Finn Europeans 2010

Wright chases Gaspic in the medal race. Supplied image.

Ed Wright in the medal race. Supplied image.

Race start. Supplied image.

Ivan Kljakovik Gaspic (CRO). Supplied image.

Daniel Birgmark (SWE). Supplied image.

Concentration downwind. Supplied image.

Tapio Nirkko and Giles Scott. Supplied image.

Piotr Kula (POL). Supplied image.

Ed Wright (GBR). Supplied image.

Deniss Karpak. Supplied image.

Ioannis Mutakis. Supplied image.

Finn Europeans