Shaw continues to shine at ISAF Sailing World Cup Final

Written by RYA | 28 November 2014

The Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club once again served up spectacular conditions on the second day of the inaugural ISAF Sailing World Cup Final on Thursday (28 November), with British Sailing Team competitors enjoying mixed fortunes in the Emirati capital.

Another impressive day for Bryony Shaw in the RS:X Women’s windsurfing fleet saw her extend her lead at the top of the leaderboard, while 470 pairing Sophie Weguelin-Eilidh McIntyre and 49er duo John Pink-Stuart Bithell have both elevated themselves into the podium positions as the four day regatta reached the halfway stage.

Weguelin, who is making her competitive return with crew McIntyre after having been given the all-clear to return after treatment for a deep vein thrombosis suffered in August, has broken into the top three positions, with the help of a consistent 7-2 on the race track today.

“It was awesome today, we had a really good day out on the water,” expressed the 25-year-old Weguelin.

“It was really nice sailing with a light-ish breeze, I would say about 7-12 knots but not a very powerful wind which made it really fun and great racing.”

The Lymington based helm, whose last competitive outing for the British Sailing Team was at the  Aquece Rio International Regatta where she placed ninth, admits she is thrilled to back out on the water and competing at an event which she originally thought she would miss.

“It is really great to be back sailing the boat again, obviously we are a little bit rusty and at times it is quite funny around the course but we can’t expect to be good at everything and it is nice to be learning, getting the feel of the boat back again and to just to be out on the water.

“We went out to do a little bit of training before the racing began today and also worked quite hard on the way in just to make sure that we are maximising our hours out on the water.”

Racing against a small but competitive fleet, which includes the 2014 World and European Champions Lara Vadlau and Jolanta Ogar (AUT), who currently hold pole position after the four race series, Weguelin recognises the benefits of racing against the world’s best.

“In an ideal situation we would be better trained for this event but given the circumstances we are really grateful to be out on the water. Racing against the best in the world gives us a marker of what we need to be working towards, how we can improve and where we are at in our campaign.”

The Beijing bronze medallist Bryony Shaw had a shaky start on day two of competition posting a 12th in her first race of the day, however soon found her winning rhythm adding a further two race wins to her imposing scorecard.

On her impressive first two days of the regatta, Shaw said: “I feel fast, I feel fit and fresh and up for it. My starts have all been smashing and I feel like my downwind speed allows me to really extend away from the fleet once I’m on the fin.  

“Tomorrow I will just try to keep going through the same processes, trying to smash the starboard end and have good acceleration off the start line and then take the race from there.”

Shaw now discards today’s opening result and is counting the best possible scoreline of five points from the six races held to extend her lead over the World, European and Olympic Test Event champion Charline Picon from France, who’s in second overall. In the Men’s RS:X event, Nick Dempsey has moved up the table into eighth with 8,14,2 and remains confident of ending the event on a high.

“I think a medal is certainly still achievable. It was a difficult day today where I think I made a few mistakes but have somehow managed to move up from eight into fifth overall and not too far off the important places,” explained the double Olympic medallist.

“My aim is to finish in the podium positions so I just need a solid day tomorrow to put me in the hunt on Sunday for the medal race.”

A 16-6-4 for John Pink and Stuart Bithell sees them advance to third overall in the 49er event, just one point off Marcus Hansen-Josh Porebski (NZL) in second and ten points behind Poland’s Tomasz Januszewski-Jacek Nowak in first.

“We didn’t have a great start to the day, we had our priorities but we didn’t execute them very well and were a bit unlucky,” said Portsmouth’s Pink on their opening score of 16.

“From that, I think we learnt well for the second and third race and executed what we thought was the winning strategy much better.” H

aving moved up the leaderboard from sixth into third and with only three more races left on Saturday and then the medal race on Sunday, Pink confirms their strategy will remain the same as they push for the podium places on Sunday.

“We will see what the conditions bring tomorrow, but we will enter the three races like we have been doing with an attacking style whilst also trying to learn from each individual race. It is very close on points with the other boats so we need to attack each individual race tomorrow, try and win the races to hopefully put us in contention for the podium come the medal race.”

In the single-handed dinghy events, Laser sailor Nick Thompson has dropped three places into sixth while a 4-7 for Alison Young saw her drop from second to fourth in the Laser Radial event. Lucy Macgregor-Andrew Walsh jump one place into seventh, while Ben Saxton-Nicola Groves remain in ninth.

Ed Wright is 13th in the heavyweight Finn class, while Kate Macgregor-Kirstie Urwin had a better second day of racing and sit 16th overall. Oliver Bridge has slipped one place to fourth in the Kiteboarding event.

Click here for the full list of results from the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final. Racing at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final continues tomorrow (Saturday 29 November), with the final medal races on Sunday 30 November.

For the latest news and information from the British Sailing Team follow us at, on Facebook or on Twitter @BritishSailing.


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