Foiling Regattas

Racing abandoned

 

 

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Josh McKnight – Photos © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

 

McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds at Sorrento, Australia

 

 

Despite their best attempts, race officials were forced to abandon racing on Day 4 of the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship being hosted by the Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club (SSCBC) at Sorrento in Victoria.

At a meeting with Moth competitors this morning, Event Director, Peter Osbourne (from the SSCBC) asked for a show of hands for racing. Most in the Gold fleet elected for racing. All but a couple in the Silver fleet voted against.

Officials asked competitors to stay ashore while they waited for visibility to improve, along with the general conditions, including pouring rain and winds that were up and down like a yoyo.

Finally, late this afternoon, the Gold fleet headed out to the course, but PRO Garry Hosie felt that of the fleet, perhaps only ten would finish, so once again, racing was abandoned.

 

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Some competitors felt they could race, Josh McKnight (AUS) and Tom Slingsby (AUS) amongst them. But others thought it was a good move, because a fair amount of damage could occur in the built up seaway.

“To be honest, I just wake up every morning and make the best of it. I can’t control the weather,” said McKnight, the 2012 world champion. “I wish we could have stayed out this afternoon. It was 18-20 knots, sailable, but a big sea. It would have been fun though.”

On his current second place, McKnight said, “It won’t be easy to beat Peter Burling, but not impossible. He could have a bad race like everyone else.”

Scott Babbage, is in third place overall, three points behind McKnight. He said, “I’m going very fast at the moment, but if you were going to pick anyone to win, you’d have to say Peter Burling, without a doubt.

“The weather hasn’t been the best so far. Too little wind, too much. It’s hard for the Race Officer – his job is thankless, I wouldn’t do it.”

“I was quick on the second day (good solid wind), some more of that would be good,” he added.

Early this evening, Peter Osbourne commented:  “We’re going ahead with the lay day, because winds in the high 20’s are expected. We will start again from 11am on Thursday. We want to deliver what the class wants,” he said of the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship.

Full results, news, more photos and video at www.mothworlds.org/sorrento

By Di Pearson

 

 

 

Emotional win for Hiroki Goto

 

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Hiroki celebrates his win – Photo © Beau Outteridge / www.beauoutteridge.com

 

 

McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds at Sorrento, Australia

 

 

Japan’s Hiroki Goto unusually showed emotion after taking out Race 8 in the Gold fleet Finals of the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship being hosted by the Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club at Sorrento in Victoria.

“Japanese people do not show emotion, but I was leading. There was nobody in front of me and a big spectator fleet as I came to the finish. It was the most amazing feeling. I could not help it, I shouted out, because I was so happy. It felt so good to win,” Goto said.

Goto typically enjoys the breeze, “but I was in good shape from the beginning. I was in the top ten in the light breeze on the first day (he was third in the opening race) and now today I win. I don’t understand, as I feel best in 15 knots and sailing on flat seas.

“Today I just seemed to have the advantage – it is strange to discover I can sail in light wind. I was in second place for a while; Chris Draper (GBR) had a good lead. But I gybed and was sailing deeper and faster and I could gybe on my foils. Chris couldn’t,” said Goto, who took the lead at that point and has moved up to 14th overall.

Chris Draper (GBR) set off from the start line on port tack and sailed to the port lay where he picked up the first of the fickle breeze line and popped up on the foils to lead the race until the final mark rounding where Hiroki Goto stole the lead.

 

Chris Draper quotes from on the water after race 1 (from Jonny Fullerton)

“I started on port and just went to all the way to the starboard lay. It was my plan from the pre-start, I just kept circling on the left and popped out on the foil.”

“It was a crash fest down the first run!”

“I was leading all the way round but coming into the last leeward mark there was an armada of boats gathered there that sucked the wind away and Hiroki in true Japanese ‘samurai’ style just came round the outside and snuck in there. It was a good race though.”

 

 

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Chris Draper – Photo © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

Peter Burling (NZL) continued his good run with third place in a dwindling north-nor ‘easterly wind that petered out to 2-3 knots.

Race officials abandoned further racing for the day at the conclusion of Race 8 for the Gold fleet.

Nathan Outteridge was timed out in 19th place (“that has never happened to me before,” the Australian said) and dropped down to sixth place overall, Burling now leads 2012 Moth world champion, Josh McKnight, by 11 points with a drop in play. McKnight finished fifth in today’s race.

 

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Scott Babbage – Photo © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

 

Following 10th place Scott Babbage has moved into third place, while Great Britain’s Chris Rashley (GBR) is in fourth place after finishing eighth. On equal points behind him is fellow Brit, Chris Draper, after his second today behind Goto.

There will be cause for double celebration in Japan, as their only female contender Wakako Tabata has lead the Women’s since Day 1. Not only that, she is sailing in the Gold fleet and was very excited by her 48th place today. Why? “Because I beat Tom Slingsby – I beat Tom Slingsby,” she said, incredulous.

“I am surprised I am the leading woman. I have only sailed a Moth for half a year and I am sailing against women like Sam England (AUS) and Annalise Murphy (IRE),” Tabata said. Sam England won the Women’s 2011 world title, while Murphy finished fourth at the 2012 Olympics in the Laser Radial.

Tabata represented Japan in the 470 Women’s at the 2012 Olympics. Beforehand, she won the 470 Women’s title at the Asian Games. Currently, she and Goto are campaigning for the 2016 Olympics in the Mixed Nacra 17.

“We have only been sailing the Nacra together for half a year also,” Goto laughs. “We are not very good, but I think now that both of us are sailing the Nacra and the Moth, we will only become better. That is the hope.”

 

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Wakako wipeout in the big breeze on Sunday but still qualyfies in the gold fleet

– Photo c Sander van der Borch / Sailing Anarchy

 

Goto is also excited as the next Moth Worlds will be held in his hometown of Hayama, Japan. “Wakako also lives nearby. We are thinking about it already,” he ended.

The Silver fleet did not race today. Currently Adriano Petrino (ITA) leads Tom Spithill (AUS) and Ryan Seaton (IRE).

Racing at the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship is due to start from 1100 hours tomorrow morning.

 

Full results, news, more photos and video at www.mothworlds.org/sorrento

 

 

Video by Beau Outteridge Productions

Pistol Pete fires four straight bullets

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Photos © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

 

McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds at Sorrento, Australia

 

 

New Zealand’s Peter Burling reeled off four straight wins to take the lead on day 2 of the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship on Port Phillip Bay in Sorrento, Victoria, sounding the warning bell for the other 159 competitors.

With the fleet split into Blue and Yellow fleets, Burling was in the Blue group on a course closer to shore. Defending world champion Nathan Outteridge (AUS) was in the Yellow on a course further out and on the receiving end of bumpier conditions and scored 3-2-2-1 results.

Two drops are in place following the seven qualifying races. Burling is on 5 points and Outteridge on 7. Tomorrow the fleet will be divided into Gold and Silver, with the top half of leaderboard going through to the Gold fleet.

Ashore Burling said: “I won all four races – the last one by over a lap, which is pretty pleasing in this fleet. it’s all come together here,” he said referring to his disappointing results at the Worlds in 2011 and 2013.

“I did well in the light and shifty weather yesterday and today was as good. I put a lot of work into improving my game for this event.”

“We were in flatter more manageable water than the Yellow fleet, but even so, I dropped off the foil at one stage and fell back to 11th, but I still got back and won. Everyone had a swim, or crashed or overtook,” the 2012 Olympic 49er silver medallist said of the course which was closer to the Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club, host for the event.

 

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Photos © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

On Nathan Outteridge, Burling said: “Both of us have different commitments now – me with Emirates Team NZ and him with Artemis Racing (AC syndicates). We’re still good mates, but things are slightly different now. He is my biggest challenge for this title, of course.”

He named Chris Rashley and Chris Draper from Great Britain and Australians Tom Slingsby, Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen, Josh McKnight and Scott Babbage as other threats.

For his part, Outteridge said of Burling: “I’ll face him tomorrow, because qualifying is over and we’ll be in the Gold fleet. I beat him on the first day in light air – that’s what I’m best at, but tomorrow’s meant to be even windier than today… I’ll be OK, but I prefer the light.

“I was OK for the first race today, but then the current changed – the last race especially was full-on and I was just trying to keep up with the leaders. It was bumpy and hard going and we all swam at some stage; everyone’s feeling it.”

 

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Photos © Th. Martinez / Sea&Co / 2015 Moth Worlds

 

On his Yellow fleet opponents: “Five of us shared it around, me; Chris Rashley (GBR), Josh McKnight (AUS), Scott Babbage (AUS) the top four from the last Worlds in the Yellow fleet, so it was never going to be easy. Dave Lister got (AUS) amongst it too.”

Babbage is tucked into third place overall, a win in Race 6 giving him the jump on Outteridge’s 49er crew and fellow Artemis Racing team member, Iain Jensen, who sailed in the Blue fleet and is fourth overall after, “three good races, but I broke a bunch of stuff in the fourth… It was bumpy, crazy and full-on in the last two races,” he said.

Babbage led the last race of the day on the yellow course until a fatal face plant within 100m of the finish line. Having recovered he limped to the line only to wipeout twice more before crossing in fifth. His misfortune handed a vital race win to Nathan Outteridge.

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Photo © Sander van der Borch / Sailing Anarchy

 

 

Tom Slingsby suffered major wing damage on race 1 of the day and had to nurse his Moth around the course with excess water in the hull for the remaining races, still managing to score a 4,2,5,2 for the day and hold fourth overall shared with Josh McKnight and Iain Jensen.

Also not so lucky was 2008 Olympic Tornado silver medallist and multiple multihull world champion Glenn Ashby (AUS). The Emirates Team NZ wing trimmer suffered extensive damage after a crash with one of the American boats in Race 6, dropping him down the board and cutting him out of Race 7, for which he will ask for redress.

“Lucky I’m a Sailmaker, so I can fix that, but I’ve got a broken foil and bow damage that will take a bit of fixing. Apart from that, it was a tough and bumpy old day, but awesome sailing.”

 

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Photo © Sander van der Borch / Sailing Anarchy

 

There were numerous stacks and wipeouts all over both courses, even the best Moth sailors were struggling in the last race of the day. The workshop was full this evening will a vast range of casualties working all night to fix the damage.

Racing will get underway from 1300 hours tomorrow in gold and silver fleets split after the end of the qualifying series today.

 

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Photo © Sander van der Borch / Sailing Anarchy

 

Results are being finalised on the official website here.

 

www.mothworlds.org/sorrento

Nathan Outteridge gets early jump

2015 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds. Sorrento - VIC AUSTRALIA  . 6/16 January 2015. Organize by Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club.Nathan Outteridge scores 2 bulletts – All photos c Thierry Martinez / Sea & Co

 

 

McDougall + McConaghy 2015 Moth Worlds at Sorrento, Australia

 

Reigning Moth world champion, Nathan Outteridge (AUS) kick-started his defence in style, getting the early jump at the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship which started on Port Phillip Bay in Sorrento, Victoria today.

Outteridge, the 2012 Olympic 49er gold medallist skipper, fired off two bullets and a fourth (his drop) on the first day of the Qualifying series to take an early lead.

Peter Burling (NZL), the 49er 2012 Olympic silver medallist skipper, who fellow Moth competitor Tom Slingsby forewarned would be the biggest threat for the series some weeks ago, is in second place after scoring 7-2-1 results, while Outteridge’s 49er gold medallist crew, Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen, is third. The top three are each separated by one point.

 

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Pete Burling pushes Nathan to the limits – Photo c Thierry Martinez

 

“There’s a lot of kiwi rivalry going on,” Outteridge said tonight. We raced against them (Burling and Blair Tuke) in the 49er and now here we are again. Peter is top in my group, so we’ll see how we go tomorrow.”

Jensen agreed. “Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, who were our training partners in the 49er are our biggest rivals. Peter’s in Nathan’s group and Blair’s in mine; he’s only sailed a Moth for three months, so his win (in Race 3) is pretty impressive,” Jensen said of Tuke who is currently in 21st place.

 

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Josh McKnight – Photo c Thierry Martinez

 

The 2012 Moth world champion, Josh McKnight (AUS) is poised nicely in fourth place, with Chris Draper (GBR), Tom Slingsby (AUS) and 2013 Moth world champion Bora Gulari (USA) trailing him, with very little between them at this early stage.

Former two-time world champion and Moth exponent, Rohan Veal, is on the comeback trail, having not competed since 2008. A little rusty, he is in 35th place. In 2005 he won every single race of the Worlds in stunning fashion. The best placed female is Wakako Tabata (JPN) in 65th place.

With 165 entries, the fleet was split into two (Blue and Yellow) on two course areas, a big job for race officials. Originally, PRO Garry Hosie planned to hold four races, but conditions decided otherwise.

 

2015 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds. Sorrento - VIC AUSTRALIA  . 6/16 January 2015. Organize by Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club.

 

Two races were held in a 6-10 knot south/south-easterly breeze. Race 1 was fairly quick, but by Race 2, patchy fickle winds slowed the fleets on both courses and the sailors struggled to foil. Then the breeze fizzled to little more than 2 knots.

The AP flag was raised and the sailors waited it out. Finally a third race was underway in more light patchy airs. Race officials shortened the race to one lap, and once it was over, they were forced to call it quits for the day and competitors returned to Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club (SSCBC) which is hosting the Worlds.

The record entry fleet is represented by Italy, Austria, Ireland, Japan, Great Britain, Denmark, Switzerland, USA, South Africa, New Zealand, Hong Kong, France, Sweden and Australia are all well represented.

The qualifying rounds of the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship continue tomorrow from 1300 hours local time.

 

Full results, news, photos and video at: www.mothworlds.org/sorrento/

Connect with us on social media using: #MothWorlds15

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By Di Pearson

 

 

Nathan Outteridge prepares for Sorrento showdown 

 

2015 McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds. Sorrento - VIC AUSTRALIA  . 6/16 January 2015. Organize by Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club.

Photo c Thierry Martinez

 

 

McDougall & McConaghy 2015 Moth Worlds in Sorrento, Australia

 

The Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club (SSCBC) has received a record 165 entries for the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 International Moth World Championship due to be sailed in the popular seaside town of Sorrento from 9-16 January, 2015, on Port Phillip.

Among the entries is defending world champion Nathan Outteridge. The NSW 2012 Olympic 49er gold medallist and America’s Cup skipper for Artemis Racing will attempt to defend his title and in the process become one of the first world champions in the New Year.

Outteridge is well aware those he will race against are just as credentialed. Concentrating on his 2016 Olympic 49er campaign in Rio and the Worlds in Santander, he has also been flat out in his role as skipper for Artemis Racing in San Francisco these last few months.

“I actually haven’t sailed my Moth at all since the 2014 Worlds in Hayling Island back in July,” said the multi-skilled sailor.

“I’ve been watching all the videos of the Oracle boys sailing at my home club in Wangi Wangi (on the NSW Central Coast). I’m good mates with a lot of them, especially Tom Slingsby,” he says of the Oracle strategist and 2012 Olympic Laser gold medallist.

“I’ve had my brother (Beau) there and have employed his video skills to do some secret spy work for me so I can keep tabs on them,” Outteridge says laughing.

“It’s great to see such a huge entry list. I believe the biggest ever. I can see a battle between the AC teams developing; there could be some good banter.”

Almost entire America’s Cup teams will be represented by Oracle Team USA, Emirates Team New Zealand and some from Artemis Racing. So it will be a double edged sword, as fellow America’s Cup and Olympic crew members go head-to-head for the title.

With regards to the major threats in defending his title, “Where do I start?” Outteridge questions.

“Probably Boar (Bora Gulari, 2013) and Josh (Josh McKnight, 2012), who have won Moth World titles before will be tough to beat. They’ve been training really hard all year.

“Then there are the fulltime Moth sailors who for the past few years have populated the top ten; like Scott Babbage, Chris Rashly (GBR), Ben Paton (GBR), Dave Lister, Anthony Kotoun (USA), Rob Gough and Amac (Andrew McDougall, also co-sponsor of the Worlds).

“They may not be pro sailors, but they are dedicated to their Moth sailing and would love nothing more than to take the title.

“And let’s not forget the America’s Cup sailors, many who were key in the 2013 America’s Cup and are new to the class: Tom Slingsby, Kyle Langford and Rome Kirby from Oracle; Chris Draper from Luna Rossa and Peter Burling, Blair Tuke, Glenn Ashby, Ray Davies and Dean Barker from Emirates Team New Zealand.”

Outteridge will also be joined by a small group of sailors from Artemis Racing; Iain Jensen, Paul Goodison BR), Freddy Loof and Loick Peyron. “It’s going to be a great chance for us to spend time together outside of our Cup duties, and we’ll get to know each other better.”

All information on official website: www.mothworlds.org/sorrento/

By Di Pearson, McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds Media

 

 

Foiling cats join the conch republic party

 

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Photo © Jim Condon

 

28th Edition Quantum Key West Race Week

 

High-speed foiling catamarans, powerful 72-foot Maxi yachts, innovative High Performance Racing designs and large classes of exciting sport boats are heading to the Florida Keys. Quantum Key West Race Week 2015 will once again showcase the full spectrum of sailboat racing amid the beautiful setting of aqua-colored waters and warm sunshine.

Many of the world’s best sailors will come to the Conch Republic for the 28th edition of Key West Race Week. For the fourth consecutive year, Quantum Sail Design Group will serve as title sponsor of the iconic event, which is organized by Premiere Racing.

A touch of the America’s Cup will come to Key West for the first time with the addition of the GC 32 class. GC stands for ‘Great Cup’ and the state-of-the-art foiling catamarans mimic the larger models used in the most recent America’s Cup by providing an airborne racing experience.

The GC32 Racing Tour will be held from May through September out of such European sites as Austria, England, Germany, Italy and France. Key West will serve as somewhat of a training and tuneup event for the Argo program along with at least three others from Switzerland, the Netherlands and France.

From a spectator standpoint, the most majestic racing machines in Key West will be those racing in the Maxi 72 class, which typically requires a crew of 17 to race. Minneapolis-based skipper Hap Fauth and his crew aboard Bella Mente return after capturing class honors in 2014 and will do battle with a pair of familiar foes in Numbers and Shockwave (George Sakellaris).

Premiere Racing is very pleased to have a pair of J/Boat classes making one design debuts at Key West Race Week. To date , the J/111 has attracted seven boats while J/88 has six on the scratch sheet.

The Farr 280 will make their Key West debut next January. Four boats will battle for one design sub-class trophies within a larger PHRF class.

Regatta dates are January 18 – 23, 2015

For more go to: www.Premiere-Racing.com

 

 

How slow can you go?

 

Mott Foiling

 

 

 

Zhik Mothapalooza™ set to be even more of a spectacle this year

 

The 2015 McDougall + McConaghy Moth World Championship is set to be even more of a spectacle this year, with the return of the Zhik ‘Mothapalooza’ which promises a potential head-to-head with teams of America’s Cup and Olympic sailors.

The event will take place alongside the Moth Worlds in Sorrento, on the Mornington Peninsula in Victoria, between 10-16 January 2015.

This year, the Zhik Mothapalooza has evolved into a unique two-event series for individuals and teams, all devised to test the competitors’ innovative foiling skills and boat handling to the extreme.

An individual event, ‘How Slow Can You Go’ is a test to find the ‘slowest foiler’ sailing between two points. You read that right – the slowest! Competitors will sail at 90 degrees to the wind over a straight 100 metre course.

Whichever sailor takes the longest time while still keeping their boat foiling at all times, without tacking or gybing, will be the winner! Anyone who has tried foiling for themselves will quickly recognise just how difficult this test will be.

The team event will be the World’s first foiling ‘Sailing Relay Race’. Teams of four, many of whom are Olympic and America’s Cup sailors will have to pick up, carry and deliver a baton to a floating bucket, then get out of the way so the next team mate can grab the baton and head back in the opposite direction.

 

 

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Photo © www.go4image.com

 

 

 

Set to be an exciting event that will test all sailors’ ability to work as a team, we expect there will be some very close calls! Any Moth Worlds entrants can team up together to battle it out for overall honours and generous prizes awarded by Zhik.

With names including Tom Slingsby, Rome Kirby, Kyle Langford, as well as Dean Barker, Glenn Ashby, Ray Davies and Peter Burling, there is potential for another race off between Oracle Racing and Team New Zealand.

Other well-known names include defending world champion Nathan Outteridge, former world champion Bora Gulari, British Laser Olympic gold medallist Paul Goodison and 49er Olympic bronze medallist Chris Draper. Will we see ‘Moth Team Oracle’ or ‘Moth Artemis’, or even perhaps the Aussie Olympic medallists’ team up?

With $5000 worth of Zhik prizes up for grabs, this is an event not to be missed by competitors and public alike!

 

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Photo © www.go4image.com

 

Mothapalooza promises some serious fun on the water and off!

Brian Connolly, founder and CEO of Zhik, said, “The Zhik Mothapalooza is an outstanding test of the sailors’ skills, and enormous fun for the spectators to watch too. We are delighted to be involved with this event. The Moth class is right at the forefront of dinghy sailing technology, and Zhik is right there with the sailors all the way.”

 

See more at: www.mothapalooza.com

America’s Cup & Olympic stars heading to Sorrento for 2015 Moth Worlds

 

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Photos © Thierry Martinez / Sea & Co. / www.thmartinez.com

 

 

America’s Cup stars, Olympic medallists and world champions are among the record 150 plus sailors who will converge on Port Phillip in the New Year when the Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club (SSCBC) in Victoria hosts the McDougall + McConaghy 2015 Moth World Championship from 9-16 January, 2015, on Port Phillip.

Defending Moth world champion and Artemis America’s Cup helm, Nathan Outteridge (AUS), heads the line-up. Like so many others, Outteridge, the 2012 Olympic 49er gold medallist, will take on fellow crew and rivals from the Olympics and the America’s Cup, among them his 49er medallist crew and fellow Artemis member, Iain ‘Goobs’ Jensen.

Other Artemis entries are Loick Peyron (FRA), who has four ORMA titles and a Transat win among his illustrious results, and 2008 Beijing Laser gold medallist Paul Goodison (GBR).

Intermingled with other big names are winning Oracle Team members Philippe Presti (FRA), Rome Kirby (USA) and Joey Newton (AUS), while Emirates Team New Zealand boats Glenn Ashby (AUS) and Kiwis Dean Barker, Ray Davies, and Peter Burling and Blair Tuke, the 2012 Olympic 49er silver medallists.

Burling and Tuke are Outteridge and Jensen’s rivals, and not just in the 49er, according to Tom Slingsby, who slates Burling as the biggest potential threat for the Moth world title.

“Peter Burling is the man to beat. I’ve been watching him, he’s sailing really well and improving all the time,” says Slingsby, the first Australian to be named ISAF World Sailor of the Year (2010) and Oracle strategist.

 

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2014 World Champion Nathan Outteridge – Photos © Thierry Martinez / Sea & Co. / www.thmartinez.com

 

 

Slingsby is running himself ragged in the lead-up. Competing in the Moth class at Sail Sydney along with other Moth Worlds candidates, on Tuesday he will call tactics aboard Perpetual Loyal in the SOLAS Big Boat Challenge on Sydney Harbour and in the Rolex Sydney Hobart. In between, the 30 year-old will skipper Oman Air in the Extreme Sailing Series from 11-14 December, but insists he is enjoying every minute.

“I had a break from sailing – I needed it. But now I’m enjoying all the opportunities that are coming my way,” said Slingsby, a multiple world title holder in the Olympic Laser class and former Etchells world champion. “The Extreme is a great opportunity to sail with some of my Oracle crew and it will give me time on the water and practice for the Moth Worlds,” he said.

“Realistically, there are 10-15 people who could win the Worlds. People are coming up with new twists all the time. The Moth is developing all the time, as can be seen with the foiling,” explains the Terrigal sailor who with his Oracle team mates has been practicing on the home turf of Outteridge and Jensen at Wangi Wangi on the NSW Central Coast.

“I’m more local than they are now,” he says laughing. “The Oracle guys have spent a bit of time there because the conditions are perfect for Moth sailing – it’s quiet – there are no distractions, so we can concentrate on sailing.”

Tornado Olympic medallist Glenn Ashby owns more world championship trophies across a broad range of multihull classes than anyone else. Leaving the woes of losing the America’s Cup behind him, the Bendigo sailor commented: “it will be, without doubt, the single most high-performance regatta I’ve ever done.

“There’ll be at least eight Olympic medallists, three Moth world champions and 15 America’s Cup sailors,” added sailmaker Ashby, who is already in Sorrento practicing regularly with Emirates Team NZ crew.

Bora Gulari, the 2013 Moth world champion returns this year after taking a year off. Since his win in Hawaii, the American has been training with the Luna Rossa America’s Cup syndicate.

Missing in action will be America’s Cup winning skipper, Jimmy Spithill, who is having his elbow operated on, but another Spithill will take his place. Younger brother Tom will try his luck in this fast-paced high-level foiling class and has also been putting in practice.

In the younger set too is 2012 Moth world champion, Josh McKnight (AUS), who has to be considered a threat after winning the title at his first Worlds. He was also crowned the 2013 NSW Moth title and in July, won the Open Italian Moth Championship.

Women have thrown their hats in the ‘Moth sphere’ too, notably local sailor, Sam England. The 2011 Moth Worlds Women’s winner is training hard to bring the trophy home again. Multi-skilled Wakako Tabata, 470 Women’s Japanese representative at the 2012 Olympics, also competes in the Laser Radial and Mixed Nacra 17, while Annalise Murphy (IRE) finished fourth at the 2012 Olympics in the Laser Radial.

Japan, Great Britain, Denmark, Italy, Switzerland, USA, South Africa, New Zealand, Austria, Hong Kong, France, Ireland, Sweden and Australia are all well represented.

It is not the first time that SSCBC, located in the pretty seaside holiday destination of Sorrento, has hosted a major event; numerous competitors are familiar with the waters having contested the 49er Worlds here in 2008.

“The Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club enjoys a first-class reputation for managing and running major sailing events,” Andrew Plympton, SSCBC’s Commodore commented. “And we’re looking forward to welcoming everyone here. Already Glenn Ashby and others from Emirates Team New Zealand are training here,” he said.

“The McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds will be the centre of attention during our typically busy January period and 10 days of sea breeze, sunshine and flat seas have been ordered.

“Planning with the Moth Association and our club started some two years ago,” he said of the event organised by SSCBC in conjunction with the International Moth Class Association.

 

SSCBC Sorrento

 

Co-sponsor of the Moth Worlds, McConaghy’s Jono Morris said: “McConaghy Boats has had an enduring association with the Moth class. As foiling started to become the norm for the fleet, we started to work with Andrew McDougall on the Bladerider project when we set up in China in 2006. Between 2006 and 2008, we built around 300 Bladeriders together.

“In 2008 we launched the Mach2, which took everything we had learned collectively from the Bladerider and improved it in every respect. Today, we’ve built over 500 Mach 2’s, combined with 300 Bladeriders; that’s 800 hydrofoiling moths and counting,” he said.

McDougall is also a stalwart sailor of the class and will have his work cut out taking on the younger guns in the fleet. “I’m realistic. A top ten finish would make me proud. I no longer have a serious speed advantage over the fleet, because they’ve got the gear I developed, so it’s a more even playing field now.”

Spectators can catch a glimpse of what is to come when the SSCBC hosts a round of the Victorian Moth Grand Prix sponsored by KA Sails this weekend and the McDougall + McConaghy Moth Australian Championship ahead of the Worlds from 6-8 January. Those keen to go on the water to view the Worlds can register their interest with Sorrento Sailing Couta Boat Club.

 

www.mothworlds.org/sorrento

 

 

See promo video here: https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QhtqAuRtWgM