Menu

Ireland's sailing, boating & maritime magazine

In association with ISA Logo Irish Sailing

Displaying items by tag: Hyères

A blustery westerly breeze made for challenging conditions today at Hyères for Finn Lynch in the men's Laser fleet yesterday writes Nathaniel Ogden. A mixed set of results seem to be becoming a theme in this year's Sailing World Cup for the National Yacht Club sailor. Three strong finishes, coming in 7th, 10th and 13th from the 60–strong fleet, were again unfortunately overshadowed by some poorer finishes and a BFD. As racing continues today, and the live medal races begin, an overall mid fleet position will be an important result for Ireland's youngest ever Olympic sailor as he continues his Tokyo 2020 campaign. 

Aisling Keller slipped down the Laser Radial fleet slightly yesterday, coming in 35th overall as stronger westerly winds in the mid twenties dominated day four at Hyères. Producing another solid set of results during the day, coming in the mid-twenties in 3 races, the young Lough Derg sailors overall result was brought down slightly by two poorer finishes at the start of the day and a BFD in the final race (discarded), ending up 41st.

Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins climbed the rankings after racing on day four, ending up in 41st position. Heavier conditions proved to deliver a mixed set of results for the young sailor, who is currently taking time out of studying for the Leaving Certificate to compete at Hyères. She ended the day with an outstanding 8th place finish in the final race and is in 39th place.

So overall, FInn lies 35th, Aoife 39th, Aisling 41st. The Lasers and Radials still have two races to sail today. Overall results to date are here

In the 49erfx, Irish interest lies with Royal Irish's Saskia Tidey and Charlotte Dobson who maintained their 3rd place medal position, as the wind picked up on day four of the Sailing World Cup in Hyères, as a westerly breeze of 22-27 knots, with gusts of 30-35 knots, settled in yesterday morning. The pair will go on to represent Britain in the 49erFX fleet today and Sunday in the live medal races. 

Sailors are always thrilled when they have a return of straight race victories. Then there are times when they are happy to come out in one piece, still within touching distance of the medals.

That was the case today at Sailing's World Cup Series in Hyères, France as chaos reigned in the Laser Radial fleet.

The competition in Hyères reached a critical stage on Friday with Medal Races imminent.

Overnight, the forecast for racing on Friday was not looking good and Hyères was expected to be on the receiving end of 30knots of breeze, gusting 35. The breeze was strong in the morning and sailing postponed as the conditions were not deemed safe enough to sail. As the day progressed the breeze decreased enabling all but one fleet, the 2.4 Norlin OD, to hit the water.

The Laser Radial saw a day of chaos but Evi van Acker (BEL) has been there and done it. Van Acker was beaming with a smile ashore after racing following a sixth and 13th place to take the lead.

Explaining the day van Acker said, "We waited a couple of hours because it was too windy, then we got out there and it wasn't windy at all. Then it was shifty. We were far out today between fighting winds coming from the left, then the right, so today you didn't know where you were.”

It was probably making sense of the chaos that brought the smile to van Acker's face, "When we were racing there were very big variations in wind and strength so you were winning, then in the middle.

"It was crazy, but I did ok.

"I had some pretty good results in some very tough conditions.”

Van Acker is 12 points clear of Tuula Tenkanen (FIN).

Overnight leader, Hungary's Maria Erdi, crept over the start line for her second black flag of the regatta and has fallen to ninth.

If van Acker was confused, then so was the young Hungarian, "I didn't push the line. I mean I didn't know what was happening at the start. Wind was shifting. People at the pin end. Wind turned. I just didn't know what was happening.”

Carrying two maximum scores in a one discard regatta effectively puts you out of the running, so what now for Erdi, "If I make the top ten I am happy. That was my goal before the regatta started and it's still my goal.”

Italy's Francesco Marrai took the shifty conditions in his stride with a bullet and fourth place to move him top above Cypriot Pavlos Kontides.

Great Britain's Nick Thompson is now tied with Kontides with an impressive second and third place. Those scores were impressive as second placed Kontides and fourth placed Matt Wearn (AUS) both had high scores on the day which they had to discard.

With another day of qualification racing before Sunday's live Medal Race, the top order in the fleet could yet again switch around as a competitive Laser fleet continue to battle.

It was a day of contrasts in the Men's and Women's 470. Blows were exchanged between the leaders in the women's and the men's saw some knock outs.

Still on the same points total, Afrodite Zegers and Annaloes van Veen (NED) and Linda Fahrni and Maja Siegenthaler (SUI) both notched up a bullet and second place to ensure that the Hyères title goes right down to the wire. With one more day of racing before the Medal Race, you wouldn't bet against these two going in to a double points decider neck and neck.

With a perfect two bullet day, Rio 2016 silver medallist's Mat Belcher and Will Ryan now have a 19-point buffer over second placed Carl -Fredrik Fock and Marcus Dackhammar (SWE).

Overnight leaders, Panagiotis Mantis and Pavlos Kagialis have dropped after a 21-22 day which they have to carry. They now sit on 54 compared to the Australians 14 and the reason was simple, "We had really bad starts today,” said a despondent Mantis, "We also missed the first shift and when you do both of those you are in trouble. It was such a bad day.”

The Greeks will have to recover their composure quickly and return to winning ways just to stay in contention for medals after an impressive opening three days of racing.

What a day Spain's Diego Botin and Iago Marra had in the 49er. Coming in the day the Spaniards were in medal contention. At the end of the day they had guaranteed themselves a gold medal. With a bullet, sixth and 11th, Botin and Marra have an unassailable 27 point lead ahead of the Medal Race.

Great Britain's Dylan Fletcher-Scott and Stu Bithell and Sweden's Carl Sylvan and Marcus Anjemark are tied on 76 points and will fight it out with Yago and Klaus Lange, on 83 points, for silver and bronze.

Fast becoming a regular sentence in a 49erFX day review, Brazil's Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze are in first place. Looking to add yet another gold to their ever growing collection, the Rio 2016 Olympic champions hold pole position for a Hyères win with an eight point lead over nearest rivals Victoria Jurczok and Anika Lorenz (GER).

There were some big climbers in the RS:X fleets shaking things up before Saturday's live Medal Race.

France's Louis Giard now sits top of the men's fleet after a 1-4-5 scoreline which gives him a one point advantage over the man who has occupied pole position all week, Switzerland's Mateo Sanz Lanz. The Swiss windsurfer could only card a 9-14-8 which are all scores he carries.

Winner of the first World Cup Series event in Miami, USA, Yunxiu Lu (CHN) was head and shoulders above the Women's RS:X fleet, claiming a bullet and two seconds. She leapfrogs several rivals into second. With a 19-point lead, Poland's Zofia Noceti-Klepacka remains top going into the double points Medal Race.

Fernando Echavarri and Tara Pacheco (ESP) hold a seven-point advantage over their nearest rivals, France's Moana Vaireaux and Manon Audinet in the Nacra 17. The Spanish pair finished the qualifying series with a bullet which made up for a discarded tenth place in the previous race. Add to that a second place and it was enough to lift them above the French team who scored 11-2-5.

On day three, Turkey's Alican Kaynar thought the then leader Nicholas Heiner (NED) had sailed conservative to take the lead. Well Kaynar was anything but as he took two bullets to take top spot from the Dutch sailor's grasp.

Damien Seguin (FRA) remains on course to win a seventh Hyères title in the 2.4 Norlin OD. The Frenchman was somewhat lucky however, that the fleet only raced once as he was back onshore fixing a mechanical issue on his boat while his competitors were out racing. Spain's Rafa Andarias claimed the only bullet on offer to lift himself in to fourth position. Two races will bring the 2.4 Norlin OD fleet to a close on Saturday

French friends and rivals, Nicolas Parlier and Axel Mazella continue to lead the way in the Formula Foiling Kiteboarding. Parlier has the upper hand with five wins from six races which gives him a four-point lead over Mazella. It was day of mixed fortunes for Mazella, but still good enough to give him a 22-point cushion over third placed Toni Vodisek (SLO)

Racing continues on Saturday 29 April at 11:00 local time with the first day of Live Medal Races shown on the World Sailing YouTube Channel. Sunday 30 April will be the second day of Live Medal Races and will bring the penultimate event before the Santander Final to a close.

Live Medal Races will be shown on the World Sailing YouTube Channel on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 April, bringing the penultimate event before the Santander Final to a close.

Published in Tokyo 2020

Three Irish Laser sailors are in the middle of the fleet as round two of the 2017 World Cup Series in Hyères, France began today for 541 sailors in ten Olympic classes writes Nathaniel Ogden.

After “one good race and one bad race” for the National Yacht Club's Finn Lynch, he currently holds 31st position, from a total of 60 boats, in the men’s Laser fleet. Another young sailor with Tokyo 2020 in her sights is Howth Yacht Club's Aoife Hopkins, who finished her first day’s racing in 37th place in the women’s Laser Radial class, narrowly beating fellow Irishwoman, Lough Derg Yacht Club's Aisling Keller in 38th position.

The first day of racing began with a light 6-10 knot easterly breeze, allowing the various fleets to get into their stride before the stronger winds, which are forecast for tomorrow, fill in on day two.

In the women’s 49erFX class, Dublin’s Saskia Tidey ended her first day’s racing for Team GBR in an impressive 5th place with helm Charlotte Dobson. Saskia began training with the GBR squad after her Irish helm, Andrea Brewster, announced she was to become an international Olympic coach. Having only made the decision to aim to represent Britain together in Tokyo at the beginning of this year, the duo are wasting no time in getting up to speed in the international fleet.Events cannot be won on the first day in sailing but they can certainly be lost. So, in a stable 8-11 knot south easterly breeze, it was vital that those aiming for the top honours laid down a marker with consistent race results.

In the 38 strong Women's Windsurfer fleet, Israel's Noga Geller came out flying with superb starts and speed. Feeling comfortable in the conditions, she snapped up the first two race wins. "It was between 10-12 knots and good for planing downwind. The conditions were just like home for me so these are my favourite conditions,” Geller explained on her secret to success.

"I was a bit nervous before but winning the first race is always nice and then winning the second was great.”

Having won the first two races in the RS:X fleet, Geller was aiming for a perfect day but a bad start in the third bout of the day meant she was unable to assert herself as she had been doing.

Geller finished in 22nd place, quite the comedown from her flying start. So what happened? "I didn't start well,” said the Israeli, simply. "I was on the wrong side and then I couldn't catch up so it was a really average race for me.

"In these conditions it's that simple. If you don't start well and you don't have a free line then you can't get your speed. It's so important to get a good start.”

She concluded with a smile, "You can't have everything.”

Geller discards her 22nd and leads the way on two points. Zofia Noceti-Klepacka (POL) and Veronica Fanciulli (ITA) follow. The day's other race win went the way of China's Yunxiu Lu, winner at the World Cup Series in Miami, USA.

In the Men's RS:X, Switzerland's Mateo Sanz Lanz had a wonderfully consistent day, winning two races that were sandwiched with a fourth. Like Geller, he put the key to success on the day down to a good start, "As soon as you get clean wind you can get free and choose whichever side you want,” he explained. "It's the one thing that makes a huge difference to where you finish.

"I'm happy as it was a tough day of pumping all the time in gusty conditions. But I managed to start with clean wind and sailed fast.”

South American sailors occupy the top two places in the 49erFX.

Rio 2016 Olympic champions Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) lead on three points and Victoria Travascio and Maria Branz (ARG) follow on four.

The Brazilians are the ones to beat in the 49erFX having added Miami gold to their collection after Rio 2016. They got off to the best start in the 20-boat 49erFX fleet, collecting a 1-2-(4) scoreline.

Travascio and Branz were hot on the heels of the Brazilians on day one, finishing third in the opening bout and backing it up with a race win immediately after. They finished the day with a discarded 12th but are pleased to be on the tails of the Olympic champions, "It was really windy and wavy today but it was good,” expressed Travascio.

"I'm happy we got off to a good start. We had two good races but then a bad third race. We went to the right when we really should have gone to the left. Overall we are happy though.”

There were some mixed scorelines in the 49er pack but it's another South American contingent who lead the way. Brothers Yago and Klaus Lange from Argentina top the leaderboard on three points and World Cup Miami winners Dylan Fletcher-Scott and Stu Bithell (GBR) follow one point behind.

Pavlos Kontides (CYP) came out firing in the 60-boat Laser fleet, winning both of the days races. Good boat speed and positioning at the startline enabled Kontides to be within the leading positions at the top mark in both races. From there he was able to use his speed to take a lead at the first gate, in both races, and subsequently he dominated from there.

Nick Thompson (GBR) and Rio 2016 Olympic Champion Tom Burton (AUS) kept Kontides in sight in both races. Thompson picked up a 3-2 and Burton a 4-5.

In the Laser Radial, Evi Van Acker (BEL) posted two strong results as she bids to defend her Hyères crown. A third and a first gives her an eight point advantage over Viktorija Andrulyte (LTU). World Cup Miami winner Vasileia Karachaliou (GRE) had a mixed day with a 35th and fourth. Sailors' worst races will be discarded after the third race so a good performance on Wednesday will propel the Greek racer up the leaderboard.

2.4 Norlin OD Paralympic Champion Damien Seguin (FRA) got off to a flyer in the 12-boat fleet. Seguin posted double bullets and has an early four-point advantage over compatriot Xavier Dagault and Italy's Antonio Squizzato.

Seguin has thrived in Hyères throughout his sailing career, winning gold six times. Winning a record seventh title will set the French racer up nicely for the upcoming Para World Sailing Championships in Kiel, Germany where he will be aiming for a fifth world title.

Moana Vaireaux and Manon Audinet (FRA) controlled the Nacra 17, picking up a (4)-1-2 scorecard to lead on three points. Lin Ea Cenholt and Christian Peter Lubeck (DEN) and defending champions Fernando Echavarri and Tara Pacheco (ESP) follow on six points.

In their first regatta together, Billy Besson, the four time Nacra 17 World Champion, and new crew Amelie Riou got off to a slow start with an 18th and 11th. By the third race, the pair were flying and took the race win.

Great Britain's Ben Cornish and France's Fabian Pic shared the race wins in the 34-boat Finn fleet. Cornish holds an early lead after he backed his race win up with a sixth and Pic sits in fourth after an 11th.

French racers Nicolas Parlier and Axel Mazella dominated their respective blue and yellow fleets in the Foiling Formula Kiteboarding. The pair won every single race, beating World Champion racers Maxime Nocher (MON) and Florian Gruber (GER) respectively.

In the 470 fleets, Rio 2016 bronze medallists Panagiotis Mantis and Pavlos Kagialis (GRE) lead the men's division and Switzerland's Linda Fahrni and Maja Siegenthaler are in control in the women's after two races each.

Racing continues on Wednesday 26 April at 11:00 local time. Live Medal Races will be shown on the World Sailing YouTube Channel on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 April, bringing the penultimate event before the Santander Final to a close.

Published in Tokyo 2020
Tagged under

#sb20 – The first SB20 Grand Slam of the 2015 season welcomed an international fleet to Hyères, in the South of France, for a fantastically close regatta with some spectacular sailing conditions from May 1-3, 2015

As Afloat previously reported, the international entry featured 25 boats from eight different nations, and included new teams from Switzerland, Italy, Portugal and Russia. There were also two boats from Singapore – both a men's and ladies' crew – who were using the event as a warm-up regatta session before the Southeast Asian Games, which is being held in SB20s in Singapore in June.

The event got underway with three races on Friday, May 1 in light conditions. Winning honours were shared by the French youth entry 'Give Me 5 By FFV France Jeune', who took the first winner's gun, British entrant 'Xcellent' skippered by John Pollard, and the Russian 'BCG Sailing Team' of Vadim Pushev.

The second day of racing saw winds build to a strong Mistral of over 30 knots. Two exhilarating races were completed before race organisers from the COYCH sent the fleet back ashore as wind speeds increased. Class secretary Ed Russo on 'Black Magic' and 'Xcellent' each took a first place in the day's high-speed competition.

The final Sunday brought more moderate 12-15 knot winds, and three races were completed. 'Xcellent', 'BCG Sailing Team' and 'Give Me 5' each took a win, bringing the event to a super-close finish with the final placings decided on countback as John Pollard's team just edged overall victory from the Russian 'BCG' entry.

Third overall was the 'Give Me 5 by FFV' crew of Robin Follin, Emeric Michel, Gauthier Germain and Marine Boudot, who were also the top Youth team. Third and fourth places were also separated on countback. Overall winners John Pollard, Rob Smitt and Mike Schwarz were also awarded the Masters prize, sponsored by Hyde Sails, while the top Ladies' award went to '5G Racing' from Singapore, with Jovina Choo, Daniela Ng, Dawn Liu and Terena Lam receiving prizes from luxury skincare brand Clarins.

John Pollard, skipper of the winning team 'Xcellent', commented: "It was definitely glorious sailing weather, and it's the fastest I've been in an SB20 – we hit 19 knots downwind! Hyères is always a great place to sail, and a good fun regatta with so many international teams from Russia, Singapore, Belgium, France, Holland and England all making it a fantastic Hyères. It was a really quality fleet."

The Hyères event is the first Grand Slam of the SB20 season, before the fleet moves onto Torbole in Italy for three events – the second Grand Slam of the season from May 22-24, the Italian Nationals and then the 2015 SB20 World Championships from July 4-10. The class will also compete at Grand Slam events in Cowes, during Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week in early August, and Cascais in Portugal in September.

The SB20 is one of the world's most successful one-design keelboats, with over 700 boats currently sailed in 22 countries. It is distributed worldwide by Sportsboat World in Netley Abbey and was originally designed by Tony Castro of Hamble, Hampshire. The 2015 World Championships will be held in Torbole, on Lake Garda in Italy from July 4-10, and the UK National Championships from September 5-8 at the Royal Southern YC in Hamble.

Overall Results:
1st GBR 3724 Xcellent John Pollard, Rob Smitt & Mike Schwarz 24pts
2nd RUS 37007 BCG Sailing Team Vadim Pushev, Aleksandr MIkhailov & Timur Sabirzianov 24 pts
3rd FRA 3653 Give Me 5 by FFV Robin Follin, Emeric Michel, Gauthier Germain & Marine Boudot 29pts
4th FRA 3706 Black Magic Edward Russo, Cedric Chateau & Giles Favennec 29pts
5th ITA 3637 Diva XS Ferdinando Battistella, Andrea Casale & Andrea Battistella

Published in SB20
Tagged under

#sb20grandslam – The SB20 class is looking forward to its first Grand Slam event of the 2015 season at the stunning venue of Hyères in the South of France, this morning.

This is the first of four Grand Slam events for 2015, with Grand Slam regattas also scheduled at Torbole in Italy, Cowes on the Isle of Wight, and Cascais in Portugal for the one-design 20-foot keelboat class.

New for 2015, the first Masters team will be awarded prizes from sailmakers Hyde while the top Women's team will win luxury products from skincare company Clarins.

Hyères, on the Cote d'Azur, is famed as a superb sailing venue – just last week it hosted some of the world's best sailors at the ISAF World Cup event, welcoming top Olympic and Paralympic class competitors to the glamorous South of France. The SB20 class is returning to the venue for their third Hyères Grand Slam, and can look forward to three days of racing with up to 12 races scheduled by organisers COCYH, and spectacular sailing conditions forecast of strong breezes with plenty of sunshine.

The fleet has attracted 25 entries from eight countries, including France, Portugal, Russia, Germany, Britain, Monaco, Switzerland, and as far afield as Singapore but unfortunately none from the Irish fleet. Competitors include Alexey Muraskhkin, who won last year's Torbole Grand Slam event, and Class President Edward Russo.

"This is an exceptional location and we're expecting some exciting, high-octane racing over the next few days," commented Ed Russo, SB20 World Council President. "We are particularly pleased to welcome Hydes and Clarins onboard as category sponsors for this year's Grand Slam series, and are sure that the Masters and Women's teams will enjoy some superb competition in this international fleet."

The SB20 is one of the world's most successful one-design keelboats, with over 700 boats currently sailed in 22 countries. It is distributed worldwide by Sportsboat World in Netley Abbey and was originally designed by Tony Castro of Hamble, Hampshire. The 2015 World Championships will be held in Torbole, on Lake Garda in Italy from July 4-10, and the UK National Championships from September 5-8 at the Royal Southern YC in Hamble.

Published in SB20
Tagged under

#isafsailingworldcup – After four days of red hot ISAF World Cup competition – in conditions similar to those expected next year for the Olympic regatta itself – three Irish campaigns are regrouping after less than stellar results on the French riviera. The sailors will review performances ahead of the Delta Lloyd Regatta which takes place in Medemblik, Netherlands next month. In a tough outcome, (given the achievement of two Irish medal race finishes in Palma earlier this month) there was no Irish participation in any of the ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères medal races yesterday, ironically in the first real breeze of the week. It would have suited Dun Laoghaire's Annalise Murphy who finished up 30th out of 40. The Belfast 49er campaign of Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern, silver medal winners in Hyeres last year, were 24th from 40. The 49erfx of Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey was 26th.

Next month's Delta Lloyd Regatta acts as the qualification regatta for ISAF Sailing World Cup Weymouth and Portland which takes place at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition venue from 8-14 June. Delta Lloyd regatta also acts as an Irish trial for the men's Laser. Belfast's James Espey and Dun Laoghaire debutante Finn Lynch are to face each other in the trial for a place at the Rio test event known as 'Aqueece Rio'  in August. 

The fan was turned up for the final day at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères as an exciting finale played out across two racing areas.

18-20 knots of breeze ensured the regatta concluded with thrills and spills aplenty. Seven races unravelled on the live broadcast area – click above vid for a full replay – whilst a further three concluded nearby.

Across the ten Olympic disciplines, ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères medals were awarded, a share of the €72,000 was distributed and ISAF Sailing World Cup Final spots were picked up.

49erFX

Last on the race track on the final day, the 49erFX provided a blockbuster conclusion.

Big breeze and big waves tested the 49erFX sailors and there were some thrills, spills and close shaves in a testing race.

One point split overnight leaders Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) and Denmark's Ida Marie Baad Nielsen and Marie Thusgaard Olsen coming into the day.

Following a clear start and intriguing upwind leg, the first mark saw the Danes hold the advantage, getting clear air in their sails. However a close rounding saw the Brazilians touch the mark resulting in a penalty turn and from there they were always playing catch up.

The Danes were able to edge away ensuring an uphill battle for the Brazilians. Pushing their 49erFX to its limits Grael and Kunze lost a bit of control on the second downwind but expertly held it together, with Grael hanging out of the boat yet keeping it upright.

Meanwhile the Danes were never under great pressure, working through the motions and despite being pipped to the Medal Race win by compatriots Jena Hansen and Katja Salskov-Iversen (DEN) they claimed gold by seven points over silver recipients Grael and Kunze.

"We had a really good race," commented the pair almost in tandem. "We kept calm throughout the course and that was important in these conditions.

"We kept it simple, without pressure and sailed fast."

Giulia Conti and Francesca Clapcich (ITA) held on to bronze after a fifth. After racing Conti said, "We made a few mistakes so we're a little disappointed but we're happy because we had good boat speed and handling. We are happy with bronze. It means a lot to us. After silver in Miami it's important for us."

Top Three
1 - Ida Marie Baad Nielsen and Marie Thusgaard Olsen (DEN) - 87
2 – Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) – 94
3 – Giulia Conti and Francesca Clapcich (ITA) – 99

Women's 470

It was a winner takes all scenario in the Women's 470 with any of the top four capable of taking gold.

Fernanda Oliveira and Ana Luiza Barbachan (BRA), Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR), Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie (NZL) and Camille Lecointre and Helene Defrance (FRA) were all in the running with the capabilities to command and conquer.

In a close, exciting race Medal Race Brazil's Oliveira and Barbachan came out of the blocks with intent and led at the first mark. They made some gains on the downwind but had Japan's Ai Kondo Yoshida and Miho Yoshioka for company on the second lap. The Japanese pair passed the Brazilians to take the bullet but it was irrelevant as the Brazilians were well clear of their rivals and finished in second to take gold.

"The points were so close," explained Oliveira. "We thought that we must do our job and sail our own race. We thought about the points and the other boats but we just focused on us. It was perfect. We finished second in the race and we're so happy.

"It was our goal to win here and we worked very hard for this and we got it. It's amazing, we're so happy."

Aleh and Powrie came through in third in the Medal Race to move up into silver medal position. "It's a great way to finish," commented Aleh. "It's been a tough week. The Brazilians have been great all week and it was an exciting Medal Race with us all fighting it out."

Camille Lecointre and Helene Defrance (FRA) followed behind the Kiwis and clinched bronze. Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR) missed out on the podium by a single point.

Top Three Women's 470
Fernanda Oliveira & Ana Luiza Barbachan (BRA) – 45
Jo Aleh & Polly Powrie (NZL) – 53
Camille Lecointre & Helene Defrance (FRA) – 54

Men's 470

It was clear for all to see that Sime Fantela and Igor Marenic's (CRO) winter training paid off. The pair ended came into the Medal Race 25 points clear of Luke Patience and Elliot Willis (GBR) to claim the gold medal a day early.

Fantela and Igor got off to a great start in the windiest and roughest sea state that the competition had seen all week to finish seventh in the fleet, ending the ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères on an impressive 40 points.

The fight for second and third place however was much less certain.

Mat Belcher and Will Ryan (AUS) rounded the first mark in pole position. They held their lead throughout the race and went on the claim the Medal Race victory which handed them silver. Luke Patience and Elliot Willis (GBR) finished just four points behind the Australians in third place.

Top Three
1 – Sime Fantela & Igor Marenic (CRO) – 40
2 – Mat Belcher & Will Ryan (AUS) – 55
3 – Luke Patience & Elliot Willis (GBR) – 59

Women's RS:X

Lilian De Geus (NED) booked her ticket to the Rio 2016 Olympic Games and the Abu Dhabi World Cup Final by taking gold in the Women's RS:X.

The Dutch sailor had a solid advantage heading into the Medal Race and knew a good performance would seal the deal. She put on an outstanding show in the Medal Race and established a commanding lead on the final downwind.

She pulled away to take her first race win of the week, ending 11 points clear of Charline Picon (FRA).

It was a high scoring affair in the Women's RS:X with ups and downs aplenty.

Picon came through in second in the Medal Race to take silver, a result she was pleasantly surprised with, "If you had said to me three days ago 'you'll win silver this week' I would have said that it was impossible but I'd never give up.

"I never gave up, I tried to fight and I'm happy because I have silver but I'm not happy about my week as I had a lot of bad races."

Patricia Freitas (BRA) pushed Picon hard in the Medal Race in an attempt to overthrow her but at the penultimate rounding she misjudged the layline which allowed the French sailor to pass. Nonetheless Freitas came through in third, taking bronze.

Top Three
1 - Lilian de Geus (NED) – 90
2 - Charline Picon (FRA) – 101
3 - Patricia Freitas (BRA) – 104

Men's RS:X

A competition made up of the world's most skilled male windsurfers was always going to be a tough challenge for all competitors. Throughout the week there have been many ups and downs with multiple race winners.

France's Pierre Le Coq started the day knowing that he would take home a medal. The Frenchman entered the Medal Race at the top of the leaderboard with a 15 point lead. An eighth or better would seal the deal and Le Coq finished in seventh to wrap up gold.

Piotr Myszka (POL) was on top form in the big breeze, coming second to take silver whilst a fourth for Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) saw him drop into bronze medal position.

Louis Giard (FRA) revelled in the big breeze and took the Medal Race win. With three race victories, Giard recorded the most out of any racer but was not consistent and ended up eighth overall.

Top Three
1 – Pierre le Coq (FRA) – 74
2 – Piotr Myszka (POL – 81 –
3 – Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) – 83

Finn

Great Britain's Giles Scott had gold all but wrapped up in the Finn and a Medal Race bullet confirmed his place at the top of the pack.

Scott has controlled the week with a discarded 24th his only result outside of the top ten and he was pleased with his performance, "Taking the event and the Medal Race win is a great way to round up the regatta, especially when it is my first win in Hyères.

"This was not an easy regatta. The conditions were super difficult with light and shifty winds for most of the week so the result is very rewarding."

Vasilij Zbogar (SLO) gave himself a huge chance of taking a medal following double bullets on the penultimate day. He followed this up with a third in the Medal Race to hold on to silver.

Great Britain's Ed Wright finished the Medal Race in eighth which was enough to hang on to bronze on 75 points. A fifth from Zsombor Berecz (HUN) left him three points off bronze medal position.

Top Three
1 - Giles Scott (GBR) – 38
2 - Vasilij Zbogar (SLO) – 62
3 - Ed Wright (GBR) – 75

Laser

An overnight protest significantly altered the Laser leaderboard.

The results before the protest saw Tonci Stipanovic (CRO) but a solid lead over Tom Burton. However, during the final fleet race Stipanovic pushed Burton off of the proper course and gained a significant advantage as a result. Following the protest, Stipanovic was scored a non discardable 41st having infringed Tom Burton (AUS). The Australian received 21 points following a redress.

Burton came into the day leading on 45 points, followed by Nick Thompson (GBR) on 47 points. Rutger van Schaardenburg (NED) and Nicholas Heiner (NED) followed on 57 points with Robert Scheidt (BRA) on 58. Stipanovic, meanwhile, was down the pack on 75 points.

The race commenced in a good breeze and Heiner was over the line early and disqualified ensuring he dropped out of the running.

Charlie Buckingham (USA) came out strongly and grabbed the lead. He was closely followed by Burton and the pair jostled at the front of the pack.

Buckingham had the best of the back and forth exchange, taking the bullet. Burton followed 11 seconds behind to claim gold much to his delight as he hit is Laser with a mixture of relief and frustration after a tough week.

With Heiner out of the running it was between Thompson, van Schaardenburg and Scheidt for the remaining medals.

Thompson remained in control and picked up a fifth to take silver. Scheidt kept van Schaardenburg at bay to finish fourth, claiming bronze.

Top Three
1 – Tom Burton (AUS) – 49
2 – Nick Thompson (GBR) – 57
3 – Robert Scheidt (BRA) - 66

Laser Radial

Evi Van Acker (BEL) made it look easy in the Laser Radial taking out the Medal Race bullet to win by 21 points.

It was all on for the remaining podium spots between Gintare Scheidt (LTU), Josefin Olsson (SWE) and Anne-Marie Rindom (DEN).

Scheidt ventured into the Medal Race on 38 points with Rindom on 44 and Olsson on 46.

Whilst Van Acker ran away with the victory Olsson gritted her teeth and got down to business. Pushing hard throughout the race she finished second, doing all she could have possibly done, having started the day in fourth overall.

Olsson had an anxious wait to see where she would finish overall and she witnessed Rindom coming through in fourth followed by Scheidt in fifth. As a result Olsson leapfrogged Rindom but it was not enough to overhaul Scheidt who claimed silver.

Top Three
1 – Evi Van Acker (BEL) – 25
2 – Gintare Scheidt (LTU) – 48
3 – Josefin Olsson (SWE) – 50

49er

Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (NZL) and Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen (AUS) had gold and silver wrapped up in advance of the Medal Race but there was a fight on for bronze.

The advantage ahead of the day was with David Gilmour and Rhys Mara (AUS). They had an eight point advantage over Germany's Erik Heil and Thomas Ploessel and were in control for the first 50% of the race. However, on the second downwind disaster struck for Gilmour and Mara as they capsized and lost their third position.

The Australians dropped down the pack and came through in ninth. The Germans capitalised on the Australians misfortune, coming through in fourth to steal bronze.

Top Three
Peter Burling & Blair Tuke (NZL) – 49
Nathan Outteridge & Iain Jensen (AUS) – 98
Erik Heil & Thomas Ploessel (GER) – 144

Nacra 17

Billy Besson and Marie Riou (FRA) stylishly sealed gold and an Abu Dhabi Final spot in the Nacra 17 by winning the Medal Race in convincing fashion.

The French team have been dominant in the Nacra 17 and had gold wrapped up in advance of the Medal Race. Besson and Riou got off to a blistering start and were able to grab an early advantage over the pack and never looked back, taking the bullet by 14 seconds over Mandy Mulder and Coen de Koning (NED).

"We're feeling good," smiled Besson, "It's a great day and it's great to win the Medal Race and finish the week off like that.

"It was really important for France to win here and everybody, including me, is really proud."

A real battle was on behind the French team between the two boats from the Netherlands with Rio 2016 Olympic selection on the line.

Mandy Mulder and Coen de Koning (NED) brought in an advantage from Trofeo Princesca Sofia and confirmed their spot by finishing second in the Medal Race and second overall. "We've qualified for the Olympics for sure," smiled de Koning.

Mulder added, "This whole week has been a good learning curve for us. We had some difficult conditions with moderate to light winds. The first day was really hard. We had some results in 20s and we learnt a lot and how to come back. We performed well in the next days and we'll take that with us."

Renee Groeneveld and Steven Krol (NED) pushed their compatriots throughout the week but couldn't quite overhaul them picking up bronze.

Top Three
1 - Billy Besson & Marie Riou (FRA) – 57
2 - Mandy Mulder & Coen de Koning (NED) – 84
3 - Renee Groeneveld & Steven Krol (NED) – 98

Sailors will now regroup and review ahead of the Delta Lloyd Regatta which takes in Medemblik, the Netherlands from 26-30 May 2015. The Delta Lloyd Regatta acts as the qualification regatta for ISAF Sailing World Cup Weymouth and Portland which takes place at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition venue from 8-14 June.

The world's best 40 Olympic and Paralympic sailors will put their skills to the test once again in Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain with World Cup honours and Abu Dhabi Final places on the line.

Published in Olympic

#ISAFupdates – Prize money is to be awarded in the Olympic and Paralympic disciplines at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères. €72,000 is to be distributed across the 12 events on show in Hyères when the medals are decided this Sunday.

Irish Olympic sailing campaigners including London 2012 sensation Annalise Murphy – who has already secured a Laser Radial berth for Rio 2016 –  are in the hunt for the new cash prizes. And Belfast Lough's Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern (also through to Rio) will be looking to repeat their 2014 performance when they earned silver on the Cote D'Azur.

ISAF President Carlo Croce said, "We are pleased to be awarding the best of the Olympic and Paralympic sailing world with prize money at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères. Alongside the drive to be crowned a Hyères gold medallist and qualifying a spot at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final, the sailors have an added incentive with the addition of prize money.

"The list of athletes competing in Hyères is exceptional and over five days of competition I am looking forward to see how the racing unfolds."

Racing from 22-26 April, the elite level fleets will put their skills to the ultimate test with 40 of the world's best in each class. ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères marks the first occasion where fleets are decided based on the ISAF World Sailing Rankings and a qualification regatta.

The world's top 30 sailors from the 2 February 2015 ISAF World Sailing Rankings release were invited to Hyères with the remaining ten receiving their spot at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères qualification regatta, Trofeo Princesa Sofia.

600 Olympic sailors in 400 boats and 39 Paralympic sailors in 25 boats will commence racing on 22 April. A four day racing series will build up to the Medal Races on Sunday 26 April where titles will be won and ISAF Sailing World Cup Final spots snapped up.

Published in Olympic

#isaf – Olympic sailing gets a great deal hotter this week thanks to a revamped World Cup circuit where only the best sailors in the world have been invited to race at ISAF's Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France tomorrow. Ireland can expect a tough fight to the finish on Sunday with just 40 of the best crews in each of the classes giving a true test of form. Anticipation is high amongst the 600 Olympic sailors in 400 boats and 39 Paralympic sailors in 25 boats.

As Afloat.ie previously reported, as a result of the new format there will be no Irish mens Laser participation because neither Belfast's James Espey or Dublin's Finn Lynch have made the Hyeres cut but Annalise Murphy is racing in the Laser Radial. Also racing are Silver medallists from last year, Northern Ireland's Ryan Seaton and Matt Mc Govern in the 49er class. Dun Laoghaire Olympic hopefuls, Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey in the 49erFX class are also in France and three-man Paralympic Sonar sailing team, John Twomey, Ian Costello and Austin O'Carroll will also compete.

Early weather forecasts suggest light to medium conditions for tomorrow's French test but nothing is takewn for granted on the Cote D'Azur because strong mistral winds are never really very far away. 

The ten Olympic and three Paralympic events at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères are flooded with Olympic, Paralympic, World and Continental Champions.

Entries are restricted to 40 competitors in each fleet and 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships gold medallists Nicholas Heiner (NED), Mat Belcher (AUS) and Giles Scott (GBR) are excited about the new concept and facing off against the best sailors in their respective disciplines from the off.

With the world's most athletic, versatile and competitive sailors making up the fleets the competition will be exceptional and there's a buzz across the boat parks as Belcher explained, "There's a sense of pride here because it's the first time entries have been restricted. The Worlds and Europeans are open but it's a privilege to be here.

"Everyone knows they've qualified to be here and they've earned their place and they're looking forward to racing. People are excited and that's filtered through to the younger sailors and teams who haven't qualified. They're going to be training harder and doing the other events and they'll be proud to get on the start line at future World Cups.

"It's a pretty cool and exciting time to be in sailing at the moment."

ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères is the first occasion where fleets are decided based on the ISAF World Sailing Rankings and a qualification regatta. The world's top 30 sailors from the 2 February 2015 ISAF World Sailing Rankings release were invited to Hyères with the remaining ten receiving their spot at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères qualification regatta, Trofeo Princesa Sofia.

Great Britain's Scott had his place on the Hyères startline sewn up well in advance of Trofeo Princesa Sofia but put in another strong performance, taking gold to extend his win streak. From four previous appearances in Hyères Scott's best result is a second behind compatriot Andrew Mills at the 2013 edition with a seventh coming in 2011, a fourth in 2009 and a 39th in the Laser in 2005.

With such strong recent form Scott is buoyant about his chances to take a first Hyères gold but he feels no weight of expectations, "Do I feel the pressure?" asked Scott quietly to himself, "Obviously it's there and people talk about it a lot but I don't really feel any pressure. I'm happy with where everything is at. I'm still working on a lot of stuff and as long as I'm still moving forward then I'm content."

Forty strong Finn sailors will be doing battle on the waters off the French Riviera and Scott knows his rivals will be ready to perform, "Ivan's [Kljakovic Gaspic] been going well over the past year, Ed [Wright] is always up there as are the French. There's a big group of 15 guys that are certainly capable of medalling for sure.

"It's very good to get racing that's as much like the Games as possible. If you're on that 40th cusp it's potentially tricky as they'll have to work that much harder to compete with the top guys. But once you're there then the racing is good and it's the pinnacle of the sport in dinghy racing."

Competition in the Laser will be wide open. Across a 12 month period there have been multiple regatta victors with the smallest of mistakes punished. Each event at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères is a single fleet competition with no qualification required. The competitors will be battling it out from the off for valuable points and positions and 2014 World Champion Heiner is full of anticipation, "It's going to be an interesting showcase," commented Heiner.

"It's the first event where you get racing against the 40 best guys in the world straight away. There's no qualification and it's going to be good racing, for sure.

"Anybody in the top ten can win this event and at the very least be on the podium. You've seen it over the past few World Cups. Phillip Buhl is now sailing really well and then there's World #1 Tom Burton. There are a few guys that are always up there and if we get some offshore stuff it's going to be really interesting."

Anticipation is high amongst the 600 Olympic sailors in 400 boats and 39 Paralympic sailors in 25 boats. Final preparations are underway with racing scheduled to commence on 22 April.

A four day series will build up to the Medal Races on Sunday 26 April where Abu Dhabi Final spots will be picked up.

Published in Olympic
Tagged under

#isafworldcup – Ireland will be hoping to repeat last year's silver medal performance when the ISAF Sailing World Cup in Hyères, France starts next week. The Olympic sailing campaigners will be in action with podium results the main target for crews that last year made the gold fleet cut in both the Radial and 49er classes. Unfortunately, this year there will be no Irish mens Laser sailor because under a new rule only the top 30 racers have qualified to compete from the ISAF's world rankings.

Northern Ireland's Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern took a memorable silver medal last year in the mens skiff class with Annalise Murphy also making inroads at the top of the Laser Radial fleet.

Irish interest is not limited to just the sailors either. Irish international judge, Gordon Davies of Bray, is on the international jury for the ISAF event.

The finest sailing talent on the planet will assemble in Hyères, France from 20-26 April for the next instalment of the ISAF Sailing World Cup.

Elite level fleets in all ten of the Olympic events will put their skills to the ultimate test with 40 of the world's best in each class. ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères marks the first occasion where fleets are decided based on the ISAF World Sailing Rankings and a qualification regatta.

The world's top 30 sailors from the 2 February 2015 ISAF World Sailing Rankings release were invited to Hyères with the remaining ten receiving their spot at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères qualification regatta, Trofeo Princesa Sofia.

From now, until 21 April, 600 Olympic sailors in 400 boats and 39 Paralympic sailors in 25 boats will train, prepare and tune up ahead of the first racing day on 22 April. A four day racing series will build up to the Medal Races on Sunday 26 April where titles will be won and ISAF Sailing World Cup Final spots snapped up.

49er and 49erFX

Peter Burling and Blair Tuke (NZL) come into ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères as the pair to beat in the 49er. Seventeen consecutive wins since their silver medal exploits at London 2012 have solidified their position as the ones to beat. The manner in which their victories have come has been outstanding, in many cases winning with a day to spare and even missing out a day of competition to attend the 2014 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Awards Ceremony.

With the countdown to the Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition truly on it would be hard to bet against the Kiwis but their rivals are pushing hard.

Erik Heil and Thomas Ploessel (GER) remained in contention with the Kiwis at the recent Trofeo Princesa Sofia whilst Nico Delle-Karth and Nikolaus Resch (AUT) come into the event full of confidence following their victory at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami. Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen (AUS) will renew their winning partnership after Jensen sailed with Joel Turner in Miami and they will certainly be in the fray in the French Riviera.

With a packed start line of the world's best 49er talent from day one, the level of competition all the 49er sailors will face will be of the highest quality.

ISAF Rolex World Sailors of the Year Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) will spearhead the 49erFX fleet, aiming to defend the title they won 12 months prior.

The Brazilians won by eight points over Kiwis Alex Maloney and Molly Meech in 2014 and Grael described Hyères as, 'the best week ever'. With the likes of Maloney and Meech, who recently won ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami, Trofeo Princesa Sofia regatta winners Maiken and Anne-Juline Foght Schütt (DEN) and the dangerous Marie Olsen and Ida Marie Nielsen (DEN) and Charlotte Dobson and Sophie Ainsworth (GBR) on the startline it's set to be another great week of competition.

Laser and Laser Radial

It will be a who's who of Laser and Laser Radial sailing in Hyères with 40 of the finest one-person dinghy sailors within each fleet.

Such is the nature of both fleets that clear favourites would be hard to determine with a mixture of recent regatta winners in the Laser and the Laser Radial.

On a fine run of form, however, is Belgium's Evi Van Acker who has finished on the podium at the last five regattas she's competed in, winning the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, UAE last November. A veteran of nine previous Olympic class regattas in Hyères the Belgian took her first title on French waters in 2014 and will be back to defend her title.

World #1 and 2014 World Champion Marit Bouwmeester (NED) will join the Belgian, renewing their long running rivalry once again. Anne Marie Rindom (DEN) will be firmly in the hunt alongside the London 2012 silver and bronze medallists having beaten them both to gold at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami in January.

In the Laser, World #1 Tom Burton (AUS) has had an up and down time in 2015 with an 18th at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami and a fifth at Trofeo Princesa Sofia. Burton will make a welcomed return to Hyères having won the last two ISAF Sailing World Cup editions on the French waters.

Germany's Philipp Buhl heads into Hyères in fine form with two wins from his last two regattas. Victory at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami and Trofeo Princesa Sofia will give him confidence in a fleet that's packed full of some of the finest athletes in the world.

Names such as Matt Wearn (AUS), Robert Scheidt (BRA), Tonci Stipanovic (CRO), Pavlos Kontides (CYP), Jean Baptiste Bernaz (FRA), Nick Thompson (GBR), Nicholas Heiner (NED), Andy Maloney (NZL), Sam Meech (NZL) and Charlie Buckingham (USA) ensure the fleet is of the highest calibre.

Finn

Giles Scott (GBR) is on a run of nine consecutive Finn regatta victories. His form is impeccable and he will come into Hyères as the man to beat.

Much like Burling and Tuke in the 49er, Scott has won the majority of his regattas by an emphatic margin. Consistently at the top and barely putting a foot wrong Scott has blown his opponents away but Hyères is a regatta gold that does not feature on his mantelpiece.

From four previous appearances, Scott's best result is a second behind compatriot Andrew Mills at the 2013 edition with a seventh coming in 2011, a fourth in 2009 and a 39th in the Laser in 2005. Nonetheless, with an unrivalled run of victories in the Finn, Scott will fancy his chances to add a further gold to his impressive repertoire.

Pieter Jan Postma (NED) won his first ISAF Sailing World Cup gold medal in Hyères in 2014 and will be back to defend his title. Further strong competition will come from World #1 Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (CRO), Thomas Le Breton (FRA), Ed Wright (GBR) and Vasilij Zbogar (SLO).

Nacra 17

Throughout the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup series Billy Besson and Marie Riou (FRA), Darren Bundock and Nina Curtis (AUS) and Vittorio Bissaro and Silvia Sicouri (ITA) were the dominant trio, sharing the podium on a number of occasions.

Whilst the form guide shows that at least one of the breakaway trio will be on the Hyères podium, their stranglehold has been infiltrated recently with a number of teams making impressions on the fleet.

Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin (AUS) took a well-deserved bronze at the 2014 ISAF Worlds and followed this up with gold at ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne, which also confirmed their place on the 2015 Abu Dhabi Final start line. The pair will be aiming to make an impression in Hyères.

A strong British team will also be on the startline and they will be buoyed by recent successes. Ben Saxton and Nicola Groves (GBR) finished second at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami whilst John Gimson and Hannah Diamond (GBR) picked up silver at Trofeo Princesa Sofia. Gimson and Diamond are a relatively new Nacra 17 pairing and with their silver, qualified for ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères.

Men's and Women's RS:X

French sailors will be at the forefront of the Men's and Women's RS:X fleets In Hyères. Julien Bontemps and Charline Picon made it a double French gold at the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander, Spain and they have continued that form in 2015.

At the recent Trofeo Princesa Sofia, Picon claimed the women's gold whilst Bontemps narrowly missed out on gold in the men's via countback.

On their home waters in Hyères they will want to continue their good form but face strong opposition.

Kiran Badloe (NED) had the beating of Bontemps at Trofeo Princesa Sofia and will head over to Hyères full of confidence. Fellow Dutchman and London 2012 Olympic Champion Dorian van Rijsselberge will be on the startline as will the strong Polish trio of Przemyslaw Miarczynski, Piotr Myszka and Pawel Tarnowski.

With a strong winter training period behind each competitor, the level of competition in the Men's RS:X will be one of the highest ever seen.

Joining Picon in the Women's RS:X fleet will be World #1 Flavia Tartaglini, ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami gold medallist Bryony Shaw (GBR) and London 2012 Olympic gold medallist Marina Alabau (ESP).

Men's and Women's 470

Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie (NZL) and Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR) will renew their longstanding rivalry in the Women's 470 in Hyères. Ever since their final day winner takes all battle at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition, which saw the Kiwis take gold, the pair have battled it out at the front of the pack.

2014 World and European Champions Lara Vadlau and Jolanta Ogar (AUT) will miss out on Hyères. Nonetheless the fleet will feature an abundance of big game contenders such as 2013 Hyères gold medallists Fernanda Oliveira and Ana Barbachan (BRA), Hélène Defrance and Camille Lecointre (FRA), Sophie Weguelin and Eilidh McIntyre (GBR) and Anne Haeger and Briana Provancha (USA).

In the Men's 470, as with any regatta they attend, Mat Belcher and Will Ryan (AUS) will be amongst the favourites. Since their partnership formed, they have featured on every ISAF Sailing World Cup regatta podium they have competed at, winning five gold medals, two silvers and a bronze.

Most recently Luke Patience and Elliot Willis (GBR) pushed the Aussies back at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami taking the spoils and they'll be back in the mix in Hyères. Further teams that will be in the hunt in Hyères are Lucas Calabrese and Juan de la Fuente (ARG), Sime Fantela and Igor Marenic (CRO), Panagiotis Mantis and Pavlos Kagialis (GRE) and Stu McNay and Dave Hughes (USA).

Paralympic Events

Hyères will feature 18 sailors in the 2.4mR and seven teams in the Sonar.

At the 2014 edition of ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères, Heiko Kroger (GER) and Damien Seguin (FRA) had an epic final race winner takes all battle in the 2.4mR. The German came from behind to defeat Seguin and take gold. The rivalry will be renewed in 2015. The 18-boat fleet features a number of leading contenders who will want to come between Kroger and Seguin. London 2012 Paralympic gold medallist Helena Lucas (GBR) will be in the mix as will her compatriot Megan Pascoe.

Bjorner Erikstad (NOR) won ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami in January and will also fancy his chances in Hyères.

In the Sonar, John Robertson, Steve Thomas and Hannah Stodel (GBR) will return to defend their title. Joining them will be World Cup Miami gold medallists Aleksander Wang-Hansen, Marie Solberg and Per Eugen Kristiansen as well as 2014 Hyères silver medallists Bruno Jourdren, Eric Flageul and Nicolas Vimont-Vicary (FRA).

Team Providence Ireland will be racing at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyères from Wednesday 22 April. Medal Races on Sunday 26 April will bring the regatta to a close.

Published in Olympic

#lasermasters – There's a strong contingent of Irish competing in the Laser Masters Worlds taking place from the 4th - 11th October in Hyeres, France this week.

The event has broken records for the number competing which topped out at an eye watering 499.

The logistics and challenges for the event organisers of dealing with a fleet this size both onshore and afloat are daunting but COYCH are managing.

Masters fleets are divided by age brackets. The youngest competitors are 35 in the apprentice fleet. At 45 these "young guns" graduate to Masters and so on as the bands continue up in blocks of 10 years.

The Irish team consists of Worlds stalwart and Great Grand Master Denis O'Sullivan. Chris Arrowsmith from RStGYC is in the Grand Master category. Ed Rice and Nick Walsh from Royal Cork YC along with Colin Galavan from RIYC and Kevin Currier from Ballyholme are in the Masters fleet. The team is rounded out by three Apprentice Masters, Dan O'Connell from RCYC, sailing coach Thomas Chaix and Paul Keane also from RIYC.

The weather has not played ball for the organisers who have been plagued by light airs and blue skies. Nice for the beach, of which there are plenty, but not for sailing. After two days of light racing some fleets have only two results but the Great Grand Masters have yet to finish a race.

After coming second in the Pre Worlds and winning the practice race Thomas Chaix was confident going into the first race but there is no quarter being given in the Apprentice fleet which includes 2 current and a very large percentage of ex Olmypians. The start line and contested mark roundings are not for the faint of heart.

The Masters fleet is around 130 boats so it's further split into Yellow and Red fleets. In the Red fleet Nick Walsh is on the hunt for some good results after a very successful domestic sailing season. Nick's sparring partner from home, Ed Rice is in the Yellow fleet and after a shaky first race put the demons behind him to score a decent result in the 2nd.

Well known RStGYC sailor Chris Arrowsmith had a middle of the road result in the first race but a strange abbreviation "PTSr" appeared beside his and others scores. This seemed to be "Penalty turns, retrospective" i.e. you're not whistled by the jury on the water but they take your number and penalise you after the race. An Australian team sailor was also penalised in this way and took the RC to the protest room where it seems to have been dropped. In the second race Chris scored a very respectable 11th. Onwards and upwards.

The forecast for the next few days is quite mixed. Last night a big rainstorm went through the area and there is a current "Orange" weather alert. Tomorrow the sun is due to come back and the wind is forecast in the 12-18kt range from a stable Easterly direction. This means waves in Hyeres Bay. Sun, Waves and Breeze for a Laser Sailor is better than a lotto win.

There is so much more to say about this event I could go on but I've just heard a gun and the AP is being lowered so I've got to go and get out on the water. For a very well observed flavour of the "internationality" of this event read USA team member Joe Berkeley's piece here 

Event photos are here and results here

Published in Laser

#swchyeres – After missing the gold fleet cut at both Miami and Palma ISAF World Cup regattas this year, Ireland's Olympic sailor Annalise Murphy showed the depth of her ambition in France this afternoon when she opened her Laser Radial account at the final round of ISAF's World Cup in Hyeres with a race win and a third place to lie just two nett points off the overall lead after the first three races.

After a fantastic day afloat in consistent 15–knot breezes, Annalise lies second overall tonight to Belgium's Evi Van Acker tonight and except for a slip in race two might well be heading up her 79–boat fleet. The Dubliner shares the same four points as the Belarussian Tatiana Drozdovskaya with only seven seven points separating the top ten.

Murphy was as far back as 28th after counting a 27th in race two but bounced straight back with a third in race three to be right in the frame in the early part of this qualification round.  

It was a significant performance in the more than forecasted winds and in a fleet that contains the very best sailors in the world including two of the three London 2012 Olympic medallists. Results here.

Tweeting after coming ashore, Murphy told her followers: "I had a 1st, a shocker of a 27th and a 3rd today which should put me into third overall. Significant improvement from Palma!"

Van Acker looked to banish her Palma demons as she took two race wins and a fifth to lead in Hyères. The Belgian racer missed out on a podium spot at ISAF Sailing World Cup Mallorca as she engaged in a battle for silver with Tuula Tenkanen (FIN) in the Medal Race. She finished the Medal Race in 10th and fell to fourth, missing out on a medal. A strong performance in the Hyères has put her on the right route at the early stage of the event.

ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne gold medallist Tatiana Drozdovskaya (BLR) is third overall.

A confirmed number of 1,111 sailors racing in 765 boats from 59 nations are racing on the French Gold coast in what is a massive turnout to bring the ISAF Sailing World Cup series to a close.

In other Irish sailing team news from Hyeres, Murphy's London 2012 team–mates have also opened their French accounts each sailing three races today. 

In the mens 49er skiff class Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern are highly placed in tenth overall in the 79 boat fleet after scoring 3,6 and 7. Results here.

ISAF Sailing World Cup Mallorca gold medallists Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA) got their week off to a strong start after picking up two race wins and discarding a 14th.

The Brazilians are in familiar company atop of the leader board with many of the leading 49erFX sailors trailing them by a narrow margin.

Ida Marie Baad Nielsen and Marie Thusgaard Olsen (DEN) sit two points behind the Brazilians whilst Charlotte Dobson and Sophie Ainsworth (GBR), who took the days other race win, occupy third.

2013 World Champions and defending Hyères champions Alex Maloney and Molly Meech (NZL) found their form after a disappointing week in Mallorca. Recording a second, a discarded 19th and a third they sit in fourth.

James Espey lies 70th from 123 starters in the mens Laser division. Results here. Jean Baptiste Bernaz (FRA) took two race wins in the Laser and is the early leader in the 123-boat fleet. The French racer took two bullets from the day's opening encounters and came through with a ninth in the third and final race of the opening day.

With two fleets the remaining race victories went the way of Robert Scheidt (BRA), Jesper Stalheim (SWE), Andy Maloney (NZL) and Matt Wearn (AUS).

Ireland's Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey are 17th from 42 in the womens 49erfx skiff. Results here.

Published in Olympic
Page 1 of 3

Olympic Sailing features a variety of craft, from dinghies and keelboats to windsurfing boards. The programme at Tokyo 2020 will include two events for both men and women, three for men only, two for women only and one for mixed crews:

Event Programme

RS:X - Windsurfer (Men/Women)
Laser - One Person Dinghy (Men)
Laser Radial - One Person Dinghy (Women)
Finn - One Person Dinghy (Heavyweight) (Men)
470 - Two Person Dinghy (Men/Women)
49er - Skiff (Men)
49er FX - Skiff (Women)
Nacra 17 Foiling - Mixed Multihull

The mixed Nacra 17 Foiling - Mixed Multihull and women-only 49er FX - Skiff, events were first staged at Rio 2016.

Each event consists of a series of races. Points in each race are awarded according to position: the winner gets one point, the second-placed finisher scores two, and so on. The final race is called the medal race, for which points are doubled. Following the medal race, the individual or crew with the fewest total points is declared the winner.

During races, boats navigate a course shaped like an enormous triangle, heading for the finish line after they contend with the wind from all three directions. They must pass marker buoys a certain number of times and in a predetermined order.

Sailing competitions at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo are scheduled to take place from 27 July to 6 August at the Enoshima Yacht Harbour. 

Venues: Enoshima Yacht Harbor

No. of events: 10

Dates: 27 July – 6 August

Tokyo 2020 Olympic Dates

Sailing competitions at the 2020 Summer Olympics in Tokyo are scheduled to take place from 27 July to 6 August at the Enoshima Yacht Harbour. 

Venue: Enoshima Yacht Harbour

No. of events: 10

Dates: 27 July – 6 August

Featured Sailing School

INSS sidebutton

Featured Clubs

dbsc mainbutton
Howth Yacht Club
Kinsale Yacht Club
National Yacht Club
Royal Cork Yacht Club
Royal Irish Yacht club
Royal Saint George Yacht Club

Featured Brokers

Featured Webcams

Featured Associations

ISA sidebutton
ICRA
isora sidebutton

Featured Events

tokyo sidebutton
sovscup sidebutton
vdlr sidebutton

Featured Chandleries

CHMarine Afloat logo
osm sidebutton
viking sidebutton

Featured Sailmakers

northsails sidebutton
uksails sidebutton

Featured Marinas

dlmarina sidebutton

Featured Blogs

W M Nixon - Sailing on Saturday
podcast sidebutton
mansfield sidebutton
BSB sidebutton
sellingboat sidebutton

Please show your support for Afloat by donating