Day one of 2015 ISAF Youth Worlds was full on with big breeze and plenty of waves greeting the sailors for the first races.
Strong wind opens 2015 ISAF Youth Worlds
Langkawi, Malaysia offered the record numbers of 425 sailors from 76 nations up to 20 knots of wind which eased off throughout the long day. There were nerves on shore as the afternoon session was delayed, but were put aside as the young sailors did what they came to do, sail.
With everyone trying to get off to a flyer to set up their tilt at a gold medal, it would seem that today was reserved for the few who liked the stronger winds that Langkawi had to offer for its first racing day.
2015 ISAF Youth Worlds – Laser Radial – Boy’s results
Returning to the Youth Worlds after finishing fifth in Tavira, Portugal last year, Australia’s Alistair Young AUS got off to a great start with a bullet in the first race and a fourth in the second to sit on top of the leaderboard after the first day of racing.
Obviously wanting to push in to the medal places, the Aussie was happy to have strong wind to start of the regatta, conditions which the youngster enjoys,
It started off pretty windy, about 20 knots in the first race and pretty choppy. I managed to do alright though. I picked the shifts and sailed fast and won the race which was great to calm the nerves first race in. Calm the nerves it has as he looks at the days to follow and the possible drop in knots that could come. We may get some lighter winds so it will be shiftier so we will all get some bigger scores, so the drops will be needed later on. I prefer the stronger winds but I don’t mind to be honest. What you get is what you get so you just have to go out there and do what you can in the conditions that are there.
The second winner of the day was Finland’s Oskari Muhonen FIN, who was also at Tavira with Young, so experience in the regatta came to the fore. The Finnish sailor’s bullet followed a ninth and leaves him laying in fourth overall.
Ecuador’s Matias Dyck ECU must have been feeling happy and confident going in to the second race after finishing just behind Young in race one. That was short lived though when he was one of nine sailors to be black flagged out of race two. The Ecuadorian will be looking to drop that from his scorecard with some good sailing for the rest of the regatta.
USA’s Nicholas Baird USA and New Zealand’s George Gautrey NZL finished near the top of the order in both races to sit in second and third respectively.
2015 ISAF Youth Worlds – Laser Radial – Girl’s results
In the girl’s section, the top five is held by Europe with Poland’s Magdalena Kwasna POL currently in pole position on six points thanks to a bullet and fifth place. With a ninth place finish in Tavira, Portugal, it would seem that just like the boy’s fleet, experience in this event is paying off on the first day.
Sitting just behind in second is Hungary’s Maria Erdi HUN who somehow seems to defy her age with an attitude and outlook of a seasoned competitor. Despite making mistakes throughout both races, Erdi never let it get to her as she says with her ever present smile,
I’m happy with my results but I did make some mistakes. I was leading in the first race quite a lot in the first upwind and then I capsized twice in the first downwind so I dropped back to fifth. But I managed to come back to finish third. In the second race it was quite tricky, I think I was about tenth around the first mark but managed to move up and finished fifth. I tried to forget about the first race at the second start and I had a clear head. But it’s only the first day so anything can happen.
Even with self-confessed mistakes, Erdi sits in second, joint on eight points with Germany’s Hannah Anderssohn GER who had a steady day with two fourth place finishes.
Taking the first bullet of the day was New Zealand’s Alexandra Nightingale NZL who couldn’t carry the form through to the second race where she finished 19th. Nightingale currently sits in tenth place overall with those two results.