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Top Ten for O'Connor as French SB20 Youth Sailor Makes His Mark on Derwent

5th January 2018
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Action at the SB20 Pre Worlds in Hobart Action at the SB20 Pre Worlds in Hobart Photo: Jane Austin

Michael O'Connor from the Royal St. George YC made it into the top ten of the SB20 Pre–World Championships Regatta that concluded yesterday. Ger Dempsey of the Royal Irish Yacht Club was 23 with Howth Yacht Club's Cillian Dickson 25th. 

French youth sailor and former world champion Robin Follin has emerged as hot favourite for the SB20 World championship on Hobart’s River Derwent, starting on Sunday. Helming Give Me 5 – French Youth Team, Follin (FRA) this afternoon won his third out of six races in the SB20 pre-Worlds regatta, taking out the last race with French flair.

In 2015 Follin became the first and only youth sailor to win an SB20 World title, at Trentino in Italy, and still qualifies for the youth division at the age of 25.

Follin and his crew also won the Youth and Corinthian trophies for the Pre-Worlds. The Masters went to Jerry Hill (GBR) the current world champion.

In today’s racing in a brisk 10-15 knot south-easterly sea breeze, Give Me 5 finished ninth (their discard) in race five, but there was no question of his dominance as he clinched an overall victory with a last race win.

He finished with a net 9 points from placings of 1-1-2-4-(8)-1, eleven points clear of his nearest rivals, Export Roo (Michael Cooper, AUS) who finished on 19 points with a scorecard of (12)-4-7-1-2- 5.

Third place went to current Australian champion Brett Cooper in Aeolus on 29 points (11-6-3-5-(18)-4) with fourth place going to current world champion sportsboatworld.com (Jerry Hill) who did not compete in the final race.

Two other French boats followed in the final standings, Le Grand Reservoir/Mazet &A (Achille Nebout) on 35 points, EOLIFT Racing (Hugo Feynit) on 37 points.
Next best of the Australian boat was Henty.cc (Matt Pilkington) who placed eighth after winning race five, followed by the Irish entry Sin Bin (Michael Connor) and two Tasmanian boats Karabos (Nick Rogers) and Porco Rosso (Elliott Noye).

In race 5 the Irish boat Binn Eadair (Cillian Dickson) crossed the finish line first only to find he had been called UFD and disqualified for breaking the start.

This resulted in Henty.cc being first, Export Roo second and sportsboatworld.com, third

In race six, Honey Badger (Paul Burnell) was also called UFD.

Tomorrow is a lay day, with the first two races of the SB20 World Championship 2018 scheduled for Sunday, 7 January.

In race 5, the Irish boat Binn Eadair (Cillian Dickson) crossed the finish line first only to find he had been called UFD and disqualified for breaking the start.

This results in Henty.cc being first, Export Roo second and sportsboatworld.com third

In race six, Honey Badger (Paul Burnell) was also called UFD.

Full (provisional) results are here

Published in SB20
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