Semi finalists decided in wet and windy Cork
– Ulrikkeholm, Kjellberg, Roble and Sylvan went through
World #2 Anna Kjellberg and compatriot Caroline Sylvan celebrated the Swedish National Day in Cork, Ireland, by advancing to the semi-finals of the 2014 ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship, the first event of the 2014 Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series).
Danish World #1 Camilla Ulrikkeholm and Stephanie Roble of the USA joined the Swedes in the semis.
“We had a pretty crazy day,” the American sighed, referring to her five-match quarter final against Kiwi Claudia Pierce.
“We started strong and felt really powerful and under control in the first two matches. Then Pierce managed to break back when we were penalised in the start of the third match, followed by a fourth match where we found ourselves losing ground in every tack,” Roble said.
In the fifth USA – NZL race of the day, Roble and her crew pinpointed what went wrong and made a good team effort to secure their slot in the semis, “We reset, and now we feel confident going into tomorrow,” concluded the American.
The big surprise of the day was probably young Swede Sylvan, defeating her far more experienced and higher ranked opponent, Meldgaard Pedersen of Denmark, who looked really strong in the round-robin stage.
After two initial quarterfinal wins the Swedish team approached the line too early in the start of the third match, turning back to restart thus leaving the course open for Meldgaard Pedersen. “Somehow we managed to gain distance to get contact again, but then we were penalised. And when we tried to clear the penalty we were penalised again, so it was game over for us,” Sylvan explained.
In their fourth match the distance between the two Scandinavian rivals was never more than two boat lengths as the lead changed hand on a number of occasions. It wasn’t until the last half of the final downwind that Sylvan was able to stretch her lead through some great gybes, to be confirmed as a semi-finalist.
“We had such a flow on board, with extraordinary crew work and great spirit. We’ll keep that feeling for tomorrow’s semis,” Sylvan said.
After losing her two first races to Anne-Claire Le Berre of France, Sweden’s Kjellberg was forced to win three straight matches to stay alive. Helped by their private Swedish Fan Club, travelling from the Royal Gothenburg Yacht Club to cheer their favourites, Kjellberg & Co fulfilled their challenging task.
“Even though we lost two matches I think we sailed five great races today, with small margins and tight situations in all of them,” Kjellberg smiled, back at the Royal Cork Yacht Club.
The fourth semi finalist in Cork is Ulrikkeholm who defeated Klaartje Zuiderbaan of The Netherlands in three straight quarterfinal matches.
“It wasn’t as easy as the figures may imply. Klaartje had great downwind speed today, but we managed to remain in control,” the smiling Dane commented.
As winner of the round-robin, Ulrikkeholm has the advantage of choosing her semi-final opponent, and will make her call on Saturday morning.
Results in the quarterfinals of the 2014 ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship, the first event on the 2014 Women’s International Match Racing Series (skipper name, nationality, wins/losses). The winning skippers advance to the semis:
Camilla Ulrikkeholm, DEN, defeated Klaartje Zuiderbaan, NED, 3 – 0
Caroline Sylvan, SWE, defeated Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen, DEN, 3 – 1
Anna Kjellberg, SWE, defeated Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 3 – 2
Stephanie Roble, USA, defeated Claudia Pierce, NZL, 3 – 2
ISAF Event Microsite
WIM Series Website
The 2014 ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship June 3 – 8 is presented by the Royal Cork Yacht Club, the Port of Cork, the Cork County Council and the Irish Examiner media partner. The ISAF 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 ISAF World Match Racing Ranking position. Denmark’s Dorte O Jensen is the most successful sailor having amassed four World Championship titles.
Find out more on the history of the event here
High-resolution rights free images from the 2014 edition are available to download on the ISAF Flickr here:
Daily VNRs will be available to download for the duration of the regatta. Please contact Event Press Officer Philomena Maguire Hahnel below for picture/video requests.
About WIM Series
The 2014 WIM Series is hosted by WIMRA for the world’s leading women match racing sailors, and contested in five venues: Cork, Ireland; Vannes, France; Lysekil, Sweden; Sheboygan, USA; and Busan, Korea. An overall prize purse of 50 000 USD will be distributed by the WIM Series at the final event in Busan, Korea, in addition to the prize money at each of the five events included in the WIM Series. Sebago is clothing partner. Official suppliers are Sailnet, 1080 Media, MILK, Sailing Education Association of Sheboygan, Adstream and Match Racing Results Service.
A number of hi-res images are available for download on www.wimseries.com/media
Event Press Officer
Philomena Maguire Hahnel
Tel: +353 842 515 804
ISAF Communications Department
Tel: + 44 2380 635 111
WIM Series Press Officer
Tel: + 46 70 604 25 04