2018 Zhik Hong Kong 29er World Championship: New Zealand takes top places for Zhik 29er Worlds

20180110 05New Zealand’s Francesco KAYROUZ and Jackson KEON (NZL12) took the title of the 2018 Zhik 29er World Champions today with top 4 results in all races and a 9 point cushion separating them from their closest competition. New Zealand got the edge in the last two races today with an early gybe allowing them to take advantage of a big right-hand shift. KAYROUZ and KEON commented on their win on the race course “How did we do it? Consistency; making sure we sail to our best and to our full potential, sailing every leg like a new race and keeping your head out of the boat. Bow down and send it!

On winning the title, Kayrouz said: “Well it sounds kind of cheesy but it hasn’t sunk in yet, but it feels good. The event’s been good; it’s been challenging and a bit nerve-racking at times, but it’s been a good send.”

2nd Overall went to Australia’s Lachie BREWER and Max PAUL (AUS6) on 20 points. France’s Benjamin JAFFREZIC and Leo CHAUVEL (FRA2) followed in third on 25points with fellow countrymen Theo REVIL and Gautier GUEVEL also on 25 points in fourth.

New Zealanders Crystal SUN and Olivia HOBBS (NZL2394) took the title as top female team in the Zhik 29er World Championship as well as 21st Overall. SUN and HOBBS were interviewed after their win “We feel pretty good, pretty excited, such a good feeling!  We have been very excited the last few days to be the only girls to make the cut into the gold fleet. It feels good to know that all our training and hard work has paid off. The event was pretty tricky with the wind and all that, but it was really a great, fun event. The racing was pretty hectic, we had all sorts of competition but it was really fun and really enjoyable to race against other people in these tricky conditions.”  

Today racers were met with no breeze and a heavy fog as they descended on the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club Middle Island Clubhouse. Racers were initially held onshore with Race Officer Charlie Manzoni commented “We couldn’t launch you into nowhere with no wind and no visibility.”

However, by around 1130hrs, a cold northerly had started to fill in and steadily built, compressing the fog into a more wet but transparent light drizzle. The gold fleet was sent to their race course in Stanley Bay where four races were sailed. The breeze for the beginning of the first two races race was at the top of the 29er wind limit however changing gears was critical as the breeze tapered off in the second lap of both the first two races.  The breeze moderated for the remaining two races of the day and crossing the line first in the final race of the championship was the first Hong Kong team and winners of the 2017 Hong Kong Open Calum GREGOR and Jon CRAWFORD (HKG2532) who took 6th overall with 26 points. The results from the Silver fleet remain the same from yesterday as the race committee decided to hold them onshore due to the breeze being in the upper class limit. 

After racing competitors made a beeline back to shore to pack up their gear in time for the 2018 Zhik 29er World Championship prize giving which will be held tonight at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Club’s Kellett Island location in Causeway Bay.  

Full provisional results at http://www.rhkyc.org.hk/upload/Sailing/Race-and-Regattas/29erWorlds/WorldsResultsFinal.htm

29er Worlds Day 5

29er Zhik World Championship being blown away!

2018 Zhik Hong Kong 29er World Championship

It was another seriously brisk day for the second day of the final series of the 2018 Zhik 29er World Championship.  Racing was cancelled yesterday with the breeze far above the 29er wind limit and the Race Officer even reporting one gust punching up to 50kts!

With the 58 teams from 11 countries now separated into Gold and Silver Fleets, nine countries are vying for the Zhik 29er World Championship from New Zealand, France, Australia, Slovenia, Russia, Canada, USA, Great Britain and Hong Kong.

This morning, sailors were initially held onshore until the breeze moderated a little before both fleets were released onto the water.  Racing was conducted off Stanley with Race 1 starting off in a north-easterly breeze of 22kts.

One race was sailed as the breeze built and the lead was constantly changing.  As the teams pushed hard to try and go faster, they also pushed each other; each keeping the pressure on the rest and the pace was frenzied -with the pressure forcing some teams to lose control and capsize. 

As the breeze increased, Race 2 got away for both fleets.  The wind, however, steadily rose and with some gusts having some serious weight behind them, the race committee decided to abandon the race whilst both fleets were in their first lap.

Going into the final day of racing, New Zealand’s Francesco KAYROUZ and Jackson KEON (NZL12) are leading followed by, Hong Kong’s Calum GREGOR and Jon CRAWFORD (HKG2532) and France’s Benjamin JAFFREZIC and Leo CHAUVEL (FRA2) in third with five points separating them.

The first mixed team is Hong Kong’s Karrie CLARK and Akira SAKAI (HKG22) who are currently in 19th position. Having already cemented the top female position in the 2018 Zhik 29er World Championship are New Zealand’s Crystal SUN and Olivia HOBBS (NZL2394) in 26th position.

The silver fleet was not at its full strength today with some of lesser experienced teams electing to stay onshore. On the water, Australia is dominating the fleet taking the first three positions.  First in the fleet are female team Annabelle DAVIES and Madison WOODWARD (AUS18) followed by William WALLIS and Brendan CRISP (AUS2447) and John-Mark PAUL and George RICHARDSON (AUS2131) with 3 points separating them.

If the breeze decides to agree, up to four races may be held tomorrow and once the teams duke it out on the race course the prize giving will be held at the Royal Hong Kong Yacht Clubs main clubhouse on Kellett Island.

Nikki Claringbold

Official race website:

http://2018.29erworlds.org/

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