British Star boys settle for second overall at world championship in Buenos Aires
Iain Percy and Steve Mitchell sent this report from the final race at the Star world championship in Buenos Aires
The Star World Championship in Buenos Aires which concluded on Saturday was won French Olympic Bronze medal team of Xavier Rohart and Pascal Rambeau who took overall victory from the Brazilian legends, and Olympic Gold medalists Torben Grael and Marcelo Ferreira. This was Rohart and Rambeau’s second world championship win, the first one being in Cadiz in 2003.
The final race was expected to be a match race between Rohart and Grael, but they chose to both sail the first beat apart and see where how they fared. First around the top in the 10 knot breeze was Dutch Volvo skipper Heiner/Breuseker with Rohart/Rambeau second and Domingos/Santos of Portugal third. We rounded fourth just in front of USA legends Reynolds/Trinter.
The first downwind saw us get a clear lane and some good waves to pass the front three to lead at the bottom, with Rohart 2nd, Heiner 3rd and Grael into 4th. Grael had to win, with Rohart outside the top 2 to win overall, and we needed to win with Grael 7th or lower to come second. Our only hope was that Rohart sailed Grael down the fleet, that was not to be. We led for the rest of the race with Rohart’s amazing speed a constant worry, but he had his eyes back on Grael and his goal was to keep him in third. We took the gun for the race; our second in as many days, but the cheers and horns went to the French as they crossed the line, a deserved win and a popular one on the dock for the laid back pair from Nice. Loof/Ekstrom (SWE) made a big comeback in the race to go from 23rd at the top mark to 4th at the finish to take 4th overall. Presti/Saliou (FRA) rounded up the top five overall with a 10th in the race.
So the Gold Stars take the top 4 places overall, Lillia boats take the top 3 places, and 6 out of the top 10, sail wise Quantum win, with Halsey second and North third, and Emetti masts taking the top 10 overall. Olympic medalists took 8 of the top 10 places overall, proof that there is no such thing as a weak Star Worlds.
A great championship was organized by the Club Nautico Olivos, with 6 races in perfect Star winds, with sunshine and great hospitality. Next year the Worlds are in San Francisco, the good thing about the Star class is the quality of the venues.
For us, a good result, our fourth medal at the World Championship in four years, the first time anyone has done this in the 83 years of the Star Class, but disappointed at what could have been had we not broken our mast in race 1 when in 4th place, or hitting a mark in race 4 while in 5th place??if only.
1 GBR 8144 PERCY/MITCHELL
2 FRA 8107 ROHART/RAMBEAU
3 BRA 8210 GRAEL/FERREIRA
4 SWE 8191 LOOF/EKSTROM
5 USA 8129 REYNOLDS/TRINTER
6 NED 8170 HEINER/BREUSEKER
7 BRA 8127 SCHEIDT/PRADA
8 USA 7995 SZABO/FATIH
9 ARG 7213 LABANDEIRA/THOMPSON
10 FRA 7879 PRESTI/SALIOU
1 FRA 8107 ROHART/RAMBEAU (6),1,3,2,2,2 10pts
2 BRA 8210 GRAEL/FERREIRA 1,6,(8),1,4,3 15pts
3 GBR 8144 PERCY/MITCHELL (53),2,2,13,1,1 19pts
4 SWE 8191 LOOF/EKSTROM 2,4,6,6,(7),4 22pts
5 FRA 7879 PRESTI/SALIOU 5,9,4,3,6,(10) 27pts
6 BRA 8127 SCHEIDT/PRADA 10,8,1,5,(13),7 31pts
7 NED 8170 HEINER/BREUSEKER 3,7,10,(53),8,6 34pts
8 POR 8145 DOMINGOS/SANTOS (14),5,9,9,3,11 37pts
9 USA 8129 REYNOLDS/TRINTER 7,3,11,16,(16),5 42pts
10 AUS 7836 MURRAY/PALFREY 8,12,5,8,(21),12 45pts