Dublin Skiff sailors Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove have won the 49er Under–23 Junior World title in Marseille, France.
In a final race climax, the Howth and Skerries pairing won the last race from a chasing pack in the 52-boat fleet.
The duo, both aged 19, who previously topped the 420 class in Ireland before moving up to the Olympic 49er, showed very consistent form during the five-day event on the Cote D'Azur with seven results from nine races in the top five.
Dickson and Waddilove went into today’s final round as overnight leaders and really held their nerve despite gear failure in race ten that saw them slip to ninth.
However, they recovered superbly to prevail in the subsequent final race of the series and secure gold, Ireland's first ever win in the skiff class at this age group.
It's all a long way from February 2017 when the pair were down after injury to Waddilove threatened their Tokyo 2020 campaign progress
The win continues a top Irish junior season after Liam Glynn took home a bronze medal in the U21 Laser World Championships in July.
Overall results are here
Additional reportage from 49er.org
The only fleet to get out this afternoon was the 49er Gold Fleet, as the Mistral that has been with us the past three days continued at full strength. Six teams were within eight points of the leader at the start of the final race, so saying it was anyone’s regatta is no understatement!
Robert DICKSON and Seán WADDILOVE (IRL) sealed the victory by winning the last race. The overnight leaders started at the boat, caught the first shift off the cliffs and after a couple more tacks up the beat consolidated and extended in victory to seal the championship.
Locked in a tie after the series, it is Max STINGELE and Linov SCHEEL (GER) that edged out Daniel NYBORG and Sebastian WRIGHT OLSEN (DEN) based on winning the countback on the strength of their gold fleet win in the first race of the day.
The German had the best day on the water, with a 1, 5, and were all smiles after coming back to shore. In between the two races, when it was still unclear if the RC would run a second race or not, skipper Max could be seen physically ramping up his energy level with a series of shouts and leg slaps to be sure hey was up for the occasion. They were not able to replicate their commanding win from the first race, but sailed very well when it mattered most.
Third place is a decent consolation prize for the Danes but they will be kicking themselves for an error in the first race that cost them the championship. In third place down the first run they capsized in their gybe. They weren’t overly under pressure, and they probably make that gybe 7 times out of 10, but not that time.
They were not the only contenders to capsize in the moment, as so did fourth overall’s Bart LAMBRIEX and Scipio HOUTMAN (NED). It took them an age to get the boat back upright, and they could only recover to 15th, a hammer blow since they already had a 19th on their scorecard while the rest of the fleet all had lower discard races.
There were no moments of rest for any of the fleet for the duration of the session. The breeze and seas were right on the limit for the afternoons racing, but ultimately most the gold fleet acquitted themselves nicely in the challenging conditions.