Final Four at WIM Series St. Thomas
Published on December 3rd, 2016
St Thomas, USVI (December 3, 2016) – Today in the Carlos Aguilar Match Race, the 5th and final event of the 2016 WIM Series, offered some really exciting racing. Within arm’s reach of the Charlotte Amalie shoreline, the world-class crews threw around their boats in breath-taking manoeuvres.
Today not only had the quarterfinals decided, but two matches in each semi final were also run. Approaching tomorrow’s conclusion, Dutch round-robin winner Renée Groeneveld and Stephanie Roble, USA, are both leading their respective semis 2 – 0. Their opponents Caroline Sylvan and Anna Östling, both from Sweden, will not have an easy task to break back and stay alive in the regatta.
Stephanie Roble and her team Epic Racing really showed their skills and consistency, first defeating the Finnish crew led by Antonia Degerlund 3 – 0 in their quarterfinal. Then, later in the afternoon, the Americans reloaded to gain a 2 – 0 lead in their semi final over World Champion and World #1 Anna Östling.
“Our prestarts were really hard, with a lot of changes in control and a lot of manoeuvring, but my girls did a really nice job calling the shift that they wanted on the final approach, and we were able to execute that both times,” Roble explains. “We got to go to the side that we wanted after the start, and I think we had good speed throughout the two races, and played the shifts really well. The entire crew just nailed it, spot on with the shifts!”
Östling would obviously rather have liked to go to bed this evening without being two down, and will now try to completely delete the lost semi final matches from her mind.
“This afternoon I simply didn’t do my job the way I usually do it. We still have to win three races, and in a semi final it doesn’t really matter which three races you win. We will erase the later part of what happened today, focusing instead on what we have to do tomorrow,” she comments.
Renée Groeneveld picked Josefine Boel Rasmussen of Team Ulrikkeholm for her quarters, and may have regret that a bit as the Danes put up a fierce fight. The Dutch won the first match, but earned two penalties in the second and lost it. After two more hard fought wins, Groeneveld chose Caroline Sylvan for their semis. Maybe a brave choice as Sylvan beat Groeneveld in the round-robins of both the Sheboygan and the Busan WIM Series event earlier this year. However, the Dutch team took two quite comfortable semi matches Saturday afternoon, over Sylvan’s New Sweden Match Racing Team.
“We know we can beat them, but today we had some boat speed problems and they sailed really well. Tomorrow is another day, and it’ll be different,” promises Caroline Sylvan.
The Carlos Aguilar Match Race, the 5th and final event of the 2016 WIM Series, concludes tomorrow with the semis, the final and the petite final, in the Charlotte Amalie harbour of St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands.
Standings in the semi finals:
Renée Groeneveld, NED – Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 2 – 0
Stephanie Roble, USA – Anna Östling, SWE, 2 – 0
Renée Groeneveld, NED – Josefine Boel Rasmussen, DEN, 3 – 1
Stephanie Roble, USA – Antonia Degerlund, FIN, 3 – 0
Caroline Sylvan, SWE – Nicole Breault, USA, 3 – 1
Anna Östling, SWE – Pauline Courtois, FRA, 3 – 0
Results in the mini round-robin for places 9 –12 (name, nationality, wins – losses):
9. Johanna Bergqvist, SWE, 3 – 0
10. Morgan Collins, USA, 2 – 1
11. Linnea Floser, SWE, 1 – 2
12. Sandy Hayes, USA, 0 – 3
The Carlos Aguilar Match Race is a World Sailing Grade One event. The format will feature a full round robin of all teams, followed by knockout quarterfinals for the top eight, and then knockout semi-finals, petit-finals and finals. The event will be sailed in IC 24, a modification of J/24, on December 1 through 4.
Overall Standings in the 2016 WIM Series (after four events out of five):
1. Anna Östling, SWE, 93
2. Pauline Courtois, FRA, 60
3. Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 58
4. Stephanie Roble, USA, 54
5. Camilla Ulrikkeholm Klinkby, DEN, 54
6. Renée Groeneveld, NED, 49
7. Katie Spithill, AUS, 25
8. Lucy Macgregor, GBR, 22
9. Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 22
10. Marinella Laaksonen, FIN, 21
11. Claire Leroy, FRA, 20
12. Lotte Meldgaard, DEN, 18
13. Samantha Norman, NZL, 14
14. Sanna Häger, SWE, 14
15. Diana Kissane, IRL, 14
16. Alexa Bezel, SUI, 12
17. Rikst Dijkstra, NED, 12
18. Nicole Breault, USA, 10
19. Johanna Bergqvist, SWE, 10
20. Antonia Degerlund, FIN, 10
21. Elizabeth Shaw, CAN, 8
22. Susanna Kukkonen FIN, 8
23. Milly Bennett, AUS, 6
24. Gyeong Jin Lee, KOR, 5
25. Sanna Mattsson, SWE, 5
About the WIM Series
The Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series) is the first and only professional sailing series for women, hosted by the Women’s International Match Racing Association and joined by the world’s leading women match racing sailors. Match racing is sailed in two identical boats around a short course, providing fast action close to the crowds on shore. The intense racing is just as exciting for the spectators as it is strategically, tactically and physically challenging for the competing crews.
An overall prize purse of 50 000 USD will be distributed by the WIM Series, in addition to the prize money at each of the events included in the 2016 WIM Series (date, event name, location, boat type):
* June 27-July 1, Helsinki Women’s Match, Helsinki, Finland, J/80.
* August 8-13, Lysekil Women’s Match, Lysekil, Sweden, DS 37.
* September 21-25, Women’s Match Racing World Championship & Buddy Melges Challenge, Sheboygan, USA, Elliott 6m.
* October 25-29, Busan Cup Women’s International Match Race, Busan, South Korea, K30.
* December 1-4, Carlos Aguilar Match Race, St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands, IC 24.
Source: WIM Series