Photo Credit: FRIED ELLIOTT / friedbits.com
Beautiful sunshine and light breeze welcomed this morning the 36 teamsattending the inaugural Star Junior World Championship at Coral Reef Yacht Club in Miami, USA. The Committee was eager to get on the racecourse as the weather forecast said the breeze would be dropping in the early afternoon. One race was concluded on Biscayne Bay with the wind blowing around 6-8 knots from West at the start at 12,10 pm and then dropping to 4-5 knots towards the end of the race one hour and 15 minutes later.
The fleet began the Junior World Championship with a general recall and a few flags went up on the racecourse for unauthorized pumping over the four leg race. The fleet was distributed evenly over the course, with a little more wind on the right hand side of it, towards Key Biscayne. It was American Star sailor Luke Lawrence, with crew Alexey Selivanov, who took an early lead at the first windward mark and kept gaining on the way down to the gate and through to the finish. Behind them, the Italian Laser Radial Youth World Champion, Guido Gallinaro with German Star World Champion crew Firthjof Kleen fought for second against Irish brothers Robert and Peter O’Leary – in the unusual setting with Robert at the helm.
“It was great out there – said Luke Lawrence – a bit shifty but after a good start on the pin side, clean and easy, the wind went our way and we could put the bow down.There are a lot of fast guys on the racecourse, even among the newcomers. I’ve been sailing in the Star class for five years now, I love it and this 30 and under World Championship is a great idea!”
“It was very shifty on the racecourse – said American Olympic Laser sailor Charlie Buckingham – I am coming from the World Cup Series event that just ended yesterday with the Medal Race and I am quite tired, but I am lucky to sail with Austin Sperry who makes my job much easier and it is a lot of fun to be on the boat with a friend instead of racing alone like in the Laser.”
After racing, the official Opening Ceremony took place in the beautiful garden of Coral Reef Yacht Club before everyone went home to rest for tomorrow. Racing is scheduled to start one hour earlier (at 11am EST) to try to get three races done and get back on track with the program.
Top ten teams in the provisional ranking after one race:
1 – USA Luke Lawrence – Alexey Selivanov
2 – ITA Guido Gallinaro – Frithjof Kleen
3 – IRL Robert O’Leary – Peter O’Leary
4 – ARG Facundo Olezza – Frederico Melo
5 – BRA Nick Pellicano Grael – Samuel Gonçalves
6 – MEX Juan Ignacio Perez – Mark Strube
7 – USA Tomas Hornos – Pedro Trouche
8 – USA Charlie Buckingham – Austin Sperry
9 – AUS Luke Payne – Torvar Minsky
10 – CAN Alex Baker – Rick Burgess