Skunked at Star Sailors League Finals
Published on December 4th, 2018
Nassau, Bahamas (December 4, 2018) – The wind failed to materialise on Montagu Bay for the opening day of the 6th edition of the Star Sailors League Finals. The Qualifiers for the 25 teams of the world’s best sailors will now begin tomorrow, with racing scheduled to start at 1100.
Shortly after the AP over A flags was raised at 1330 EST, Regatta Chairman Paul Hutton explained: “On the race course there was nothing – the wind would come in with a few knots from the west, then the north, then nothing, then the south. It wasn’t sustained and directionally it was all over the place.” Traditionally Star boats need around 5+ knots in order to race.
“We have got a low pressure system west of us coming off the Florida coast and heading towards us,” continued Hutton. “That is sucking all of the wind out the atmosphere. The front is expected here tomorrow. As it gets close, there will be slightly stronger wind, then, as it passes, quite a lot of wind. We’ll see the wind swing into the north and then settle into the prevailing east. This doesn’t often happen in December, but it can.”
Ultra-experienced Star and America’s Cup sailor Mark Strube, racing here with French 470 World Champion Kevin Peponnet, said: “Usually in the Bahamas at this time of year you get easterly trade winds. I have been here for five Western Hemisphere Championships and six Star Sailors League Finals and we’ve never been skunked. Most of the time the Bahamas are 15-25 knots every day, sunny, beautiful seas, everything perfect.”
Brazilian Jorge Zarif, the reigning Star boat World Champion, who is back for his fourth Star Sailors League Finals, agreed with the race committee’s decision: “There is no wind at all. It would be impossible to sail a proper race or even get out to the race course. Tomorrow morning is not that good, but we should have good breeze in the afternoon and from then on we will have a great regatta.”
Strube also believes the rest of the week is looking fine. “We might have a few showers tomorrow, but the rest of the week looks like 14-18 knots – absolutely perfect.”
After qualification rounds for all 25 crews on December 4 to 7, the competition goes into the knockout stages with the Quarter Final, Semi Final and Final Races on December 8. The winner of the Star Sailors League Finals receives US$ 40,000 from a prize pot of US$ 200,000.
All the action will be live and free streaming on internet with expert commentary from special studio guests. To watch online… click here.
Racing is scheduled on December 4-8, 2018.
Event details – Facebook – Twitter
Iain Percy (GBR) – Anders Ekström (SWE)
Šime Fantela (CRO) – Antonio Arapović (CRO)
Robert Scheidt (BRA) – Henry Boenig (BRA)
Freddy Lööf (SWE) – Edoardo Natucci (ITA)
Mateusz Kusznierewicz (POL) – Dominik Życki (POL)
Max Salminen (SWE) – Johan Tillander (SWE)
Paul Cayard (USA) – Arthur Lopes (BRA)
Diego Negri (ITA) – Frithjof Kleen (GER)
Pavlos Kontides (CYP) – Markus Koy (GER)
Tonči Stipanović (CRO) – Frederico Melo (POR)
Gerogy Shayduko (RUS) – Vitalii Kushnir (UKR)
Lars Grael (BRA) – Samuel Gonçalves (BRA)
Xavier Rohart (FRA) – Pierre-Alexis Ponsot (FRA)
Jorge Zarif (BRA) – Pedro Trouche (BRA)
Ruggero Tita (ITA) – Enrico Voltolini (ITA)
Zsombor Berecz (HUN) – Michael Maier (CZE)
Kevin Peponnet (FRA) – Mark Strube (USA)
Hamish Pepper (NZL) – Steve Mitchell (GBR)
Francesco Bruni (ITA) – Nando Colaninno (ITA)
Mark Mendelblatt (USA) – Brian Fatih (USA)
Eivind Melleby (NOR) – Joshua Revkin (USA)
Geroge Szabo (USA) – Roger Cheer (CAN)
Augie Diaz (USA) – Bruno Prada (BRA)
Ondřej Teplý (CZE) – Antonis Tsotras (GRE)
Guido Gallinaro (ITA) – Kilian Weise (GER)
About STAR SAILORS LEAGUE (SSL)
The Star Sailors League is a World Sailing Special Event that organises elite championships with substantial prize money to celebrate today’s heroes and to honour the legends of our sport. Our SSL Ranking, SSL Grand Slams and annual SSL Finals are inspired by tennis and give the public an exciting and easy to understand format for competition among individual athletes. Our SSL Nations Gold Cup is our biennial grand finale to crown the world’s top sailing nation. The SSL Nations Gold Cup uses the same nationality principles as the Olympic Games to provide a country against country championship like the World Cup in football. Star Sailors League shines the spotlight on the athletes and arouses the sporting passions of national pride.
Source: Rachele Vitello, SSL