Saturday, 18 July 2009

Volvo ISAF Youth Worlds Conclude in Brazil


Alexandra Maloney & Bianca Barbarich-Bacher finished fourth overall in the Girls 420 class. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

by Jodie Bakewell-White

Racing at the 2009 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championships has just concluded in Buzios, Brazil. The NZL Yachting Trust has come away with a Gold medal for Sam Meech, a fourth place in the Girl’s 420 and fifth place overall for team performance.

All members of the NZL Yachting Trust Youth Team finished in the top ten of their respective fleets. Prize-giving is on now in Brazil.


Sam Meech took Gold medal by 31 points in the Boys Laser Radial. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

Sam Meech completely dominated the Laser Radial Boy’s class from start to finish wrapping up the event with a huge 31 point margin over his nearest rival. Meech now has two Youth World Championship medals under his belt adding this year’s gold to a bronze in Denmark in 2008.

“It has been a pretty good event for me. Everything just fell into place nicely,” says Meech. “Buzios is a great venue and the regatta has been fun. I’ve met a lot of great people too.”

Yachting New Zealand’s Marty Watson says that Meech was an inspiration. “Sam won the hearts of the competitors and the coaches, and everyone here in Buzios. He demonstrated great sailing skill and great sportsmanship.”

Other New Zealanders to have won Gold at the Youth World Championships in the Boy’s single-handed class include Russell Coutts in 1981, John Irvine in 1983, Stuart Bannatyne in 1989, Dean Barker in 1990, Dan Slater in 1994 and Simon Small in 1996.


Alexandra Maloney & Bianca Barbarich-Bacher finished fourth overall in the Girls 420 class. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

Just missing out on the medals was Girl’s 420 pair Alexandra Maloney and Bianca Barbarich-Bacher who lifted to fourth place overall after the final race just sailed. Conditions today were much the same as yesterday with an ENE breeze of 15-18 knots.

“Alexandra and Bianca sailed extremely well in the last two days,” says Marty Watson. “They moved up to fourth place but weren’t able to reel in a medal. They excelled in the breeze and they’ll go on now to the 420 World Champs in Lake Garda with a lot of confidence.”

The NZL Yachting Trust Youth Team was fifth in the team standings with the Volvo Trophy for national team performance going this year to France. “We finished fifth overall for the team performance – still a pretty good result after a couple of days that didn’t go so well for us in the very light marginal sailing breeze early in the regatta,” says Watson.

Rachel Basevi finished the event in 9th place in the fleet of 39 competing in the Girl’s Laser Radial, reportedly sailing well in the fleet of 39. In the windsurfing classes Lucy Driver was eighth and Ben Mackay was 10th. “Lucy was a real surprise package for us, lifted to eighth overall exceeding our expectations,” says Marty Watson.

Other double-handed sailors Ben Goodwin and Logan Dunning-Beck finished in eighth with a second place in the final race. And multihull duo James Turner and Marcus Hansen also finished the regatta in eighth place.

Both 420 pairs now travel on to Lake Garda, Italy to compete in the 2009 420 Class World Championships, while much of the remaining team return home to New Zealand.


Sam Meech: first past the post in the Boys Laser Radial. Image copyright Dave Kneale/Volvo Ocean Race.

Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championships 2009
New Zealand’s Final Results


1st Sam Meech – Laser Radial (Boy’s One Person Dinghy – 53 boats)
9th Rachel Basevi - Laser Radial (Girl’s One Person Dinghy – 39 boats)
10th Ben Mackay – RS:X (Boy’s Windsurfer – 24 boards)
8th Lucy Driver – RS:X (Girl’s Windsurfer – 15 boards)
8th Logan Dunning-Beck & Ben Goodwin – 420 (Boy’s Two-Person Dinghy – 31 boats)
4th Alexandra Maloney & Bianca Barbarich-Bacher – 420 (Girl’s Two-Person Dinghy – 24 boats)
8th Marcus Hansen & James Turner – Hobie 16 (Open Multihull – 17 boats)

Principle sponsor of the NZL Yachting Trust Youth Team is the NZL Yachting Trust. Supporting sponsors include SPARC, ASB and Line 7.

Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF Worlds

1 comment:

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