Jørgen Svendsen (DEN) and Bo Petersen (DEN) shared the spoils on the first day of the 2016 OK Dinghy World Championship in Quiberon, France after a glamour day on the water with unbroken sunshine and a building sea breeze that topped out at 16-18 knots. An impressive 105 OK Dinghies from 10 nations completed registration.
An early postponement ashore to wait for the sea breeze was rewarded with an increasing wind all day. The left side proved largely favoured most of the day with Jim Hunt (GBR) the early leader in race 1, after one general recall. He led for the first triangle before the Danish duo came past in the building breeze.
While the 2014 European champion Svendsen challenged for the lead, it was current European champion Petersen who took a narrow win to open the championship, from Petersen and Hunt
The breeze continued to build for race 2, producing perfect sailing conditions that left a smile on the faces of all the competitors wherever they were in the fleet. Race 2 belonged to Svendsen who built a huge lead on the fleet after the leeward mark. Petersen was second while Stefan Myralf (DEN) rounded out the top three for the strong Danish team.
Petersen said, “I had hoped for nice, calm wind, a little bit of sea breeze, that would fit me perfectly, but we had 10 metres/sec and we had two wonderful races. I was lucky in both starts. In the first race we had a lot of fights between Svendsen, Jim Hunt and I. The lead kept shifting and I had some good lucky tacks on the final upwind. It was a really good fight.”
“In the second race I took the lead after the gybe mark, but Svendsen was lucky and had a big gust and took off all alone and built a really big gap. Stefan was really fast in these windy conditions and you have to use whatever you have to keep him behind.”
“It’s nice to see us in front as we have put in a lot of work in Hellerup and sailing a lot, but then again it’s long week ahead.”
Svendsen, “I was surprised that it went so well, as yesterday when we had the tune up my speed wasn’t so good. Today I had two good starts, and yesterday it was good on the left, but you shouldn’t do it too much. And I had a lucky hand with the shifts.”
“I hope to be in the top five, but my body is top 10 only. My knees and back are bad so I haven’t raced for two months. It’s the last call for me, so I also hope for light winds here.”
The venue of the national sailing school and the town, with its many restaurants and bars, is a perfect place to hold a championship, with most of the sailors heading down the narrow streets and seaside roads each evening to capture the flavours and essence of the area. With the sun shining and a fabulous sea breeze every day so far, the championship has got off to the best possible start.
Racing is scheduled to continue at 13.00 on Tuesday with two races scheduled each day until Friday.
Results after 2 races (provisional)
1 DEN 3 Jorgen SVENDSEN 3
2 DEN 21 Bo PETERSEN 3
3 GBR 11 Jim HUNT 6
4 GER 792 Andre BUDZIEN 11
5 GBR 1 Charlie CUMBLEY 11
6 GBR 2183 Richard BURTON 12
7 NZL 544 Greg WILCOX 17
8 POL 1 Thomasz GAJ 18
9 SWE 100 Thomas HANSSON-MILD 19
10 SWE 2797 Mats CAAP 23