Another country, another regatta, another 10 hours on the water, another borrowed boat that things keep breaking on. I am over this sailing gig!
No the funkster hasn’t been slacking on his reporting duties, since the last report, I have been madly packing containers, dashing to airports, travelling to the other side of the World to sail a boat in windy conditions again and looking for an internet connection.
By now you all know the results for the regatta. Mike Martin and Jeff Nelson, won the 2009SAP 505 World Championships in convincing fashion, counting 6 firsts and a second. Martin and Nelson pictured above thanks to Erik Simonson.
With two races to run, Mike Holt and Carl Smit had it all to lose, as Martin and Nelson already had their drops on the scorecard, whereas theirs was clean. It was a perfect situation from which to attack and attack they did. The last two races featured two 5ohs having a match racing dial up on a crowded start line. Unfortunately for Holt and Smit, everyone gave them room to play, whereas Holt/Smit wanted the crowd, so they could force an error. Both times Martin and Nelson escaped the trap and with their dominant speed, bolted. It was an impressive result.
These Worlds were full of talented sailors and past World Champions, yet none were even in the same league as our new champions. The speed difference was significant, particularly downhill. For Martin, it was his second win in a 505. !0 years previously, he won as a crew for Howie Hamlin. As a result, Mike becomes the first to win from both positions.
From an event perspective, it was a big deal. The technology brought to the event coverage really made this a standout event. The combination of the tracker system and the video meant the event was watched around the World. I would get home to find tactical suggestions emailed to me from my normal helm after watching events unfold throughout the day. It was an impressive effort!
Physically, this was the most demanding regatta I have ever done and truthfully, it was least prepared I have ever been, which probably made it worse. However, the two things that will stick with me most from this regatta, is just how quick the Yanks were on their home waters and just how bloody cold San Francisco can be.
I think it’s time I retire.