SPAIN, GREAT BRITAIN AND GREECE CLAIM 420 WORLD CHAMPIONSHIP GOLD MEDALS
Ten races contested and we’ve crowned four new 420 Class World Champions in the Open, Women, U17 Open and U17 Women.
Congratulations to our new 420 Class World Champions, Martin Wizner/Pedro Ameneiro (ESP) in the Open, Vita Heathcote/Milly Boyle (GBR) in the Women, Odysseas Spanakis/Konstaninos Michalopoulos (GRE) in the U17 Open and Neus Ballester/Andrea Perello (ESP) in the U17 Women.
After a day of no racing yesterday, teams went into the final day ready for a three race schedule to complete an 11 race series.
The breeze started well, around 10 knots, but it was light, so teams knew it was possible only two races could be guaranteed and struck their game plan accordingly.
With races 9 and 10 done, race 11 got underway for the 420 Women gold fleet and 420 U17 gold fleet, but as the breeze continued to drop the Race Committee abandoned racing. A good decision for some, not for others – but that’s sailing.
The 2019 420 World Championship came to a close this evening with the Medal Ceremony and prize giving, before celebrations continued at the pasta and disco after-party.
Racing throughout the ten races has been a showcase of superb talent, as the elite of 420 Class racing from around the world have gathered in Vilamoura, Portugal. 456 sailors from 24 nations have given their all, committed and passionate to be the best they can. Racing has been fast and dramatic, with the fun and chilled ambience shore side helped along by some great socials. Friends have been made, memories shared and sailing history made.
Next for the 420 Class fleet is the Youth Sailing World Championships in Poland and the 420 Junior European Championship in Spain.
Defending 2018 World Champions Seb Menzies/Blake McGlashan went into the first race of the day holding a 10 point advantage over Spain’s Nacho Davila/Javier Mestre. A further 6 points behind were last year’s Worlds bronze medallists Martin Wizner/Pedro Ameneiro, who had their sights on the ultimate prize.
Wizner/Ameneiro knew they had their work cut out to close the gap on the Kiwis who had delivered an awesome scoreboard over the previous race days. The Spanish opened up their final day assault with a race win, with the Kiwis suffering a blow to finish back in 10th, and the gap closed to just 7 points.
The fight now was between these two teams with the Kiwis hoping to survive their double digit score. As the duel intensified, the Spanish maintained their momentum in race 10 to loosely cover the Kiwi pair who, caught up further back in the fleet, could only watch their gold medal slip away.
A super performance from Wizner/Ameneiro saw them strike the ultimate attack when it mattered, managing the competition skilfully to seize the gold medal from the Kiwis, who wrapped up silver. Spain’s Conrad Konitzer/Fernando Rodriguez climbed up to the bronze medal position.
"We're disappointed not to win but we have learned some valuable lessons that we will take into the Youth Worlds," McGlashan said. "This wasn't the result we came for but we learned a lot during the week, like the importance of every place in every race.
"We will not make the same mistakes again. With some perspective, we feel better prepared for the youth worlds where we will be fighting for the top of the podium."
The Spanish 420 fleet put on a fantastic show across the 420 Open fleet, dominating the top 10 with five teams in the line-up.
Oliver Dowson Mcgill/Szymon Matyjaszczuk (GBR) won the silver fleet.
420 Open – Final Top 10 after 10 Races
1. Martin WIZNER/Pedro AMENEIRO (ESP 56005) - 46 pts
2. Seb MENZIES/Blake MCGLASHAN (NZL 56674) - 49 pts
3. Conrad KONITZER/Fernando RODRIGUEZ (ESP 56259) - 53 pts
4. Nacho DAVILA/Javier MESTRE (ESP 55836) - 61 pts
5. Jonathan STEIDLE/Leonardo HONOLD (GER 56773) - 61 pts
6. Jacobo GARCIA/Antoni RIPOLL (ESP 56675) - 67 pts
7. Pablo RUIZ/Miguel MARTINEZ FORTUN (ESP 56187) - 68 pts
8. Mason MULCAHY/Andre VAN DAM (NZL 56163) - 71 pts
9. Luís NIZA/Paulo BAPTISTA (POR 56741) - 71 pts
10. Will MICHELS/Louis LA FONTISEE IV (USA 55175) - 84 pts
Series leaders Vita Heathcote/Milly Boyle (GBR) lost their footing round the race track in the opening race of the day, finishing in the unusual position of 18th, whilst their closest rivals Irene Calici/Petra Gregori of Italy knocked out a 2nd place. Another double digit finish for the British in race 10, compared to the Italians front of fleet 3rd place, saw the scoreboard differential reduced to just 4 points.
Onto race 11, and the Italians were ahead, with the British now chasing hard to hold onto gold. The dropping wind brought a twist to the drama as the Race Committee had no choice but to abandon racing.
“It is the weirdest feeling ever,” said a clearly ecstatic Heathcote on their World Champion win. “I can’t believe it has happened, I actually can’t. God is with us right now. The last race I had a heart attack.”
“And then it was abandoned,” exclaimed Boyle in reference to the drama of race 11. “The Italian girls did so well, congratulations to them. They deserved everything that they got. We got a bit lucky at the end but you know it is fine."
“After 5 years of 420s we finally did it and it is such a good feeling,” added Heathcote.
“Tick that box off, World Champions, thank you very much,” concluded a grinning Boyle.
Silver medals to the Italians who showed a massive gain on last year’s 16th place finish, and bronze medals to Melina Pappa/Maria Tsamopoulou (GRE) who were last year’s U17 Women silver medallists.
Race track kudos to the USA’s Maddie Hawkins/Yumi Yoshiyasu, who started the day in 11th place and ended it in sixth just 8 points off the podium, and to Germany’s Sophie Steinlein/Oda Hausmann who converted their 13th overall to 7th.
420 Women – Final Top 10 after 10 Races
1. Vita HEATHCOTE/Milly BOYLE (GBR 55244) - 37 pts
2. Irene CALICI/Petra GREGORI (ITA 56571) - 41 pts
3. Melina PAPPA/Maria TSAMOPOULOU (GRE 56340) - 54 pts
4. Paula VAN WIERINGEN/Maria Del Mar GIL (ESP 56417) - 55 pts
5. Patricia REINO/Isabel LAISECA (ESP 56490) - 56 pts
6. Maddie HAWKINS/Yumi YOSHIYASU (USA 56037) - 62 pts
7. Sophie STEINLEIN/Oda HAUSMANN (GER 56772) - 67 pts
8. Jess LAVERY/Rebecca COLES (GBR 54480) - 69 pts
9. Carlotta SCODNIK/Camilla SCODNIK (ITA 56272) - 76 pts
10. Marina GARAU/Blanca CABOT (ESP 56762) - 81 pts
Odysseas Spanakis/Konstaninos Michalopoulos (GRE) followed the trend of the overnight series leaders in the other classes, delivering an off-pace result in the first race of the day to give the chasing Ange Delerce/Timothee Rossi the chance to more than half the Greek’s points advantage after the French pair took the win.
The battle for gold and silver has always been between these two, with just 5 points separating the teams as they went into what turned out to be the final race. The margin to the third placed team was 20 points, so they knew the race for gold was just between them.
Off the starting line in race 10 and the Greeks set the pace, powering off with the French chasing. As the breeze decreased, it was impossible for Delerce/Rossi to make gains on the Greeks, who crossed the line in 4th.
Gold to Greece, silver to France and Spain’s Alberto Morales/Miguel Bethencourt took bronze.
“I am very happy,” smiled Odysseas Spanakis. “After last year’s second in the U17 Open place we managed to come first and we are very happy for this even though we had an inconvenience the day before because of our protest. “We managed to come back stronger and win the Championship.”
The top three women’s teams all finished inside the top 10, with Neus Ballester/Andrea Perello (ESP) taking U17 Women World Championship gold in 4th overall, the USA’s Vanessa Lahrkamp/Katherine McNamara taking silver in 8th and bronze to Spain’s Julia De Juan/Carla Nuñez who moved up to 10th overall after winning the last race.
Davide Manica/Eugenio Di Meco of Italy finished first in the silver fleet.
420 U17 – Final Top 10 after 10 Races
1. Odysseas SPANAKIS/Konstaninos MICHALOPOULOS (GRE 56478) - 20 pts
2. Ange DELERCE/Timothee ROSSI (FRA 56650) - 33 pts
3. Alberto MORALES/Miguel BETHENCOURT (ESP 56600) - 44 pts
4. Neus BALLESTER/Andrea PERELLO (ESP 56769) - 56 pts
5. Lampis GIANNOULIS/Simos MICHALOPOULOS (GRE 54484) - 66.9 pts
6. Florian KRAUSS/Jannis SUEMMCHEN (GER 56437) - 68 pts
7. Oscar POUSCHÈ/Luca COSLOVICH (ITA 56771) - 78 pts
8. Vanessa LAHRKAMP/Katherine MCNAMARA (USA 56364) - 82.9 pts
9. Rosa DONNER/Sebastian SLIVON (AUT 56761) - 83 pts
10. Julia DE JUAN/Carla NUÑEZ (ESP 56575) - 87 pts
About the 2019 420 World, Women’s World and U17 World Championships
The 2019 420 World, Women’s World and U17 World Championships, 3-11 July 2019, is hosted at Vilamoura, Portugal. 456 sailors from 24 nations are competing, with 89 boats in the Open fleet, 73 in the Women and 67 in the U17. From 6-11 July, all fleets will contest a 6 race qualification series and 6 race final series, with a single race discard coming into play after race three.
About the International 420 Class Association
The 420 is an established worldwide performance two-person trapeze and spinnaker racing dinghy which holds status as a World Sailing Class and Learn-to-Sail recognized boat.
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