The 18-year-old from Woodbridge sealed bronze in the Girl’s one-person Laser Radial event, which was Britain’s first in that discipline at the multi-class Youth Worlds since 2005, with bronze last won by two-time Olympic and 2016 senior World Champion Alison Young.
Collingridge was part of a 14-member British Youth Sailing Team squad selected to compete at the premier global youth racing event, which saw 374 of the world’s best sailors descended on the Chinese city of Sanya.
Collingridge, the under 19 RYA Youth National Champion in the class, improved every day in the tricky wind conditions off Hainan Island to sit in fourth place and with a chance of a medal going into Friday’s final day, but she was precariously placed with a number of other rivals close on points around her in the results table.
The young British sailor didn’t have the best start to her last race, but pulled through on the final run to move into the bronze medal spot, overtaking the Argentinian sailor who’d gone into the day in third place.
An elated Collingridge said on returning to shore: “I honestly don’t think it has really sunk in yet. I’m really, really shocked to have done this well, but I’m really happy with how I’ve been sailing this week.
“I knew I was in contention at the beginning of the day and was just trying to stay focused throughout the day.”
“I was pretty nervous this morning, because I knew that there were only two points between me and third, and two points between me and the person behind me so it really was completely up for grabs,” continued the Suffolk sailor.
“I knew what I needed to do, and that was get a good start, sail the pressure, which is what I’ve been doing all week. I didn’t actually get the best start and had to fight from pretty deep to get where I was and on the last downwind I took a big bundle including the Argentinian who was ahead of me. So I got it on the last bit!”
Gold went to USA’s Charlotte Rose with Uruguayan sailor Dolores Moreira Fraschini taking silver.
After a pleasing week, a buoyant Collingridge is excited to see where her sailing can take her.
“It’s been such a good experience here. I had really high expectations for the event, and it’s really lived up to it. The atmosphere is so nice, and everyone’s been so friendly. It’s been a great week, and I love sailing Lasers so much, so I’m up for training, keeping going, seeing what under 21 events bring and see where I go from here.”
James Gray, British Youth Sailing’s Team Leader at the event commented: “I’ve been really impressed with Daisy this week. She knew she was probably an outside contender but has shown great maturity to keep on learning and improving with each day to end up with the bronze medal.
“It’s been quite some time since we’ve had a single-handed female dinghy sailor who has managed to do that at this event.”
Collingridge’s was one of two medals won by the British Youth Sailing Team at the event, with Dorset windsurfer Emma Wilson retaining the world title she won in 2016.
“It’s been a hard-fought week in conditions that our sailors don’t experience that much of in the UK,” Gray continued, “but I’m delighted with the two medals we won today and I think we can be proud of how we conducted ourselves as a team regardless of outcomes.
“Each sailor continued to learn and to fight even when things hadn’t quite gone to plan.”
Full results from the 2017 Youth Sailing World Championships
British Youth Sailing Team competing in China:
Andy Brown (Loch Insh) – 6th
Emma Wilson (Christchurch) - Gold
Ben Whaley (Swanage, Dorset) – 19th
Daisy Collingridge (Woodbridge, Suffolk) - Bronze
Alex Smallwood and Ross Thompson (Beaconsfield/Godalming) – 14th
Hatty Morsley and Pippa Cropley (Y Felinheli/Sparsholt) – 5th
Benno Marstaller and Chloe Collenette (Mylor/Restronguet) – 13th
Bella Fellows and Anna Sturrock (Plymouth/Loch Tummel) – 6th
Nick Robins and Billy Vennis-Ozanne (Winchester/Hill Head) – 20th
Follow the team on the British Youth Sailing Team Facebook and Twitter @RYAYouthRacing.