Curtain closes on Aarhus Test Event
Published on August 13th, 2017
Aarhus, Denmark (August 13, 2017) – The Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus 2018 Test Event comes to an end as the five remaining gold medallists are decided today.
The last day of the Test Event kicked off with sunny and windy conditions in the Bay of Aarhus. Temperatures reached 19°C, and a south-westerly breeze of 11 to 15 knots, gusting 20, provided challenging conditions for competitors.
After 5 of the Olympic Classes completed their Medal Races the previous day, it was the turn of the Men’s and Women’s 470s, the Finns, and the Lasers, both Standard and Radial, to fight for prizes.
The Laser Class was dominated by the Aussies and Kiwis all week. It was Australia’s Matthew Wearn, who deservedly won gold on the final day.
Whearn explained, “Today was stressful, it was not easy sailing in these conditions. The breeze coming from the land made it tricky, however, I managed to adjust to today’s conditions and won the regatta.”
Competition between the top three positions during the week was intense and unpredictable, as Wheaton alludes to, “The Laser Class is very competitive because we always end up with close points. I found myself, mostly, competing with Tom (Burton).”
It was Burton, also from Australia, who took silver. Sam Meech (NZL) moved up from fourth to snatch bronze.
In the Laser Radial Class, Josefin Olsson (SWE) climbed the table throughout the week to gain gold. Erika Reineke (USA) took silver and Tatiana Drozdovskaya (BLR) went home with bronze.
Turkish, Men’s 470, sailors, Deniz Cinar and Ates Cinar, had the points advantage on the final Medal Race day and that lead was enough to take them over the line to win gold.
“The conditions on the water were tricky, it was gusty and shifty. There was a steady breeze of 10 knots but suddenly we got huge gusts of 20 knots”, says Deniz.
Ates added, “The race course was closer to shore, so the wind was shifting a lot. The winds shifted twenty degrees left and right, which is not like the usual five degree shifts that you get.”
Silver, went to Stuart McNay and Dave Hughes (USA) and leaving with the bronze were Kevin Peponnet and Jeremie Mion, of France.
Sailors in the Women’s 470 class have been swapping positions on the leaderboard all week but it was Switzerland’s Linda Fahrni and Maja Siegenthaler who managed to finish strongly to win the gold.
Agnieszka Skrzypulec and Irmina Mrózek Gliszczynska, from Poland, won silver and Tina Mrak and Veronika Macarol (SLO) picked up bronze.
In the Finn Class, Nicholas Heiner (NED) held onto his final day lead to take gold. Heiner’s rival throughout the week, Zsombor Berecz (HUN), had to settle for silver. Finnish sailor, Tapio Nirkko, scored bronze.
Sailors attending the 2018 Worlds can expect a challenging set of Race Courses, especially the Medal Race areas, close to the city of Aarhus.
The very successful and educational Hempel Sailing World Championships 2018 Test Event draws to a close with sailors, Race Officials and the event organizers better prepared for what is set to be a fantastic World Championships next year.
North America: Finishing in the top ten from North America were USA sailors Stu McNay/ Dave Hughes (470 Men, 2nd), Erika Reineke (Laser Radial, 2nd), Haddon Hughes (Laser Radial, 5th), Stephanie Roble/ Maggie Shea (49erFX, 3rd), Christopher Rast/ Trevor Burd (49er, 4th), Judge Ryan/ Hans Henken (49er, 9th), and Canadian Tom Ramshaw (Finn, 6th).
Racing for 370 sailors from 54 nations in all 10 Olympic Classes extends from Tuesday August 8 and runs through to Sunday August 13 with the top ten advancing to the Medal Races on the Saturday and Sunday.
About the World Championships
The Sailing World Championships is held every four years and are the largest gathering of Olympic class sailors. The Sailing World Championships are the principal qualification event for the Olympic Games.
Aarhus 2018 is the first and most significant qualification event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games, with 40% of the nation quotas places available across the ten Olympic events. Men’s and Women’s Kiteboarding will also be held across the duration of the 2018 World Championships.
Santander, Spain, hosted the 2014 World Championships in September 2014. The 2014 Worlds served as the first Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition qualifier with 50% of Rio 2016 places awarded.
Source: World Sailing