On to the Quarter-Finals in Helsinki
– Macgregor Goes Undefeated to Win Round Robin
The battle for the final spots in the quarterfinals came down to the last flight at the 2017 Women’s Match Racing World Championship in Helsinki, Finland. Eight of the top teams in the world will move on to the second stage and keep their dreams of a World Championship title alive while six teams had their hopes defeated. Lucy Macgregor (GBR) put an exclamation point on her team’s round robin by winning all of her matches today and remaining undefeated.
As the last flights played out in the bright sunshine in front of the evening crowds on the terrace of Hernesaaren Ranta, the final two spots were still to be decided. The most exciting of the late matches featured two Finnish teams skippered by Marinella Laaksonen and Antonia Degerlund. During a tacking duel on the second upwind leg, Degerlund’s main trimmer slipped overboard while tacking. She hung on to the mainsheet, but while the others recovered her, Laaksonen was able to slip away to an insurmountable lead. “Although we are disappointed for our team, we are very happy that our training partners, Marinella and her team, qualified through to the quarter-finals with her win over us,” Degerlund confided at the end of the day.
Joining Macgregor and Laaksonen in the quarter-finals will be defending Women’s Match Racing World Champion Anna Östling (SWE), Trine Palludan (DEN), Renée Groeneveld (NED), Mikaela Fors (FIN), Pauline Courtois (FRA), and Caroline Sylvan (SWE).
As the winner of the round robin stage, Lucy Macgregor (GBR) gets two significant “prizes”. She will be presented with the ISAF / World Sailing Nucci Novi Ceppellini Memorial Trophy. The trophy is named after Nucci Novi Ceppellini, ISAF Vice-President from 1998-2008, who passed away in February 2008 after many years dedicated to the sport, with women’s match racing one of her particular passions. In addition, she gets the opportunity to choose her opponent for the quarter-finals. When pressed by Liz Baylis, WIM Series Manager, during the after race “Sailor Talk Show” to reveal her choice, Macgregor responded: “You’ll have to wait until the morning. Our team has to sit down with a cup of tea and a biscuit and have a chat about it tonight!”
The weather in Helsinki has been a rollercoaster over the past few days – bright sunshine then blustery clouds then brilliant sun again. “Welcome to Finnish summer!” joked Mats Welin, Commodore of Nyländska Jaktklubben (NJK), the host yacht club of this year’s World Championship.
Tomorrow evening the sailors and officials will be treated to a special evening at Blekholmen, the historic clubhouse of NJK on a beautiful island in the middle of the harbour with stunning views of Helsinki.
Results in the 2017 Women’s Match Racing World Championship, the first event of the 2017 WIM Series, at the end of Stage One (skipper, nationality, wins – losses, winning percentages):
- Lucy Macgregor, GBR, 13 – 0, 100%
- Trine Palludan, DEN, 10 – 3, 77%
- Anna Östling, SWE, 9 – 4, 69%
- Renée Groeneveld, NED, 9 – 4, 69%
- Marinella Laaksonen, FIN, 8 – 5, 62%
- Mikaela Fors, FIN, 7 – 6, 54%
- Pauline Courtois, FRA, 7 – 6, 54%
- Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 7 – 6, 54%
- Johanna Bergqvist, SWE, 6 – 7, 46%
- Margot Riou, FRA, 5 – 8, 38%
- Martina Karlemo, FIN, 4 – 9, 31%
- Antonia Degerlund, FIN, 4 – 9, 31%
- Sanna Häger, SWE, 2 – 11, 15%
- Ekaterina Kochkina, RUS, 0 – 13, 0%
The racing continues Tuesday with the quarter-finals on the waters at Hernesaari (Ärtholmen), to be followed by the semi-finals and then concludes with the final on the longest day of the year, Wednesday 21 June.
The Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series) is the first and only professional sailing series for women, hosted by the Women’s International Match Racing Association and joined by the world’s leading women match racing sailors. Match racing is sailed in two identical boats around a short course, providing fast action close to the crowds on shore. The intense racing is just as exciting for the spectators as it is strategically, tactically and physically challenging for the competing crews.
2017 WIM Series (date, event name, location, boat type):
* 16-21 June – 2017 Women’s Match Racing World Championship – Helsinki, Finland – J/80
* 7-12 August – 2017 Lysekil Women’s Match – Lysekil, Sweden – Fareast 28
* 13-18 November – 2017 Busan Cup Women’s International Match Race – Busan, South Korea – K30
* 30 November – 3 December – 2017 Carlos Aguilar Match Race – St. Thomas, U.S. Virgin Islands – IC 24
The WIM Series is hosted by WIMRA. Official suppliers are Sailnet, Sebago, MILK, Adstream, Intertidal Ventures, Fredag and Match Racing Results Service.
More information about the Women’s International Match Racing Series:
WIM Series Manager Liz Baylis, Liz@wimseries.com, +1 415 691 6202
Nyländska Jaktklubben, NJK, was founded in 1861 and is with more than 2 000 members and numerous yacht racing accomplishments the leading Finnish Yacht Club. NJK has trained several Olympic champions, and has a great heritage within match racing. The event venue of the 2017 Women’s Match Racing World Championship will be close to the shore in the southern part of the town, near Eira and Hernesaari (Ärtholmen) areas. The former industrial site of Hernesaari is transforming into a residential area, and thanks to the great sea views, the Hernesaaren ranta restaurant complex and the Löyly public sauna, the place has quickly become very popular.
More information about the 2017 Women’s Match Racing World Championship:
Local Press Officer Leena Vento-Selen, email@example.com, +358 50 389 46 00
The World Sailing Women’s Match Racing World Championship is an annual event that was first held in Genoa, Italy in 1999, after a successful event was held as part of the 1998 ISAF Sailing World Championship in Dubai, UAE. Skippers are invited to attend the Championship based on their World Sailing Match Racing Ranking position. Denmark’s Dorte Jensen is the most successful sailor, having amassed four World Championship titles.
World Sailing Communications Department, firstname.lastname@example.org, + 44 2380 635 111