GOLD TO BELCHER/RYAN AND ZEGERS/VAN VEEN IN HYERES30 Apr 2017
A cold, overcast day with a steady 8-12 knot breeze did nothing to dampen the spirits of the final few lucky World Cup Series medallists on the final day of racing at Hyeres, France.
When the going gets tough, some teams have the ability to just get the job done. Rio 2016 Men's 470 silver medallists, Mat Belcher and Will Ryan (AUS) rose to the top when others around them were struggling. With a string of four race wins in a row handing them the gold with a day to spare, the Aussies could have sat back and basked in the glory. Instead they went for the jugular and claimed a fifth straight race win in the Medal Race.
On paper the gold look liked a walk in the park, but for Belcher it was anything but, "The one thing I love about this class is the strength and depth throughout which always gives us good racing. We had a great scorecard this week but we have had to fight for every metre.
"It's one of our first events back after Rio so it was great for me and Will and we look forward to building on this through the year now."
The two teams that pushed Belcher and Ryan the most were Carl-Fredrik Fock and Marcus Dackhammar (SWE) and Panagiotis Mantis and Pavlos Kagialis (GRE). The Swedish team claimed silver and the Greeks recovered from a disastrous fourth day to keep hold of bronze.
World #1 Women's 470 team, Afrodite Zegers and Annaloes van Veen (NED) made it three straight regatta wins in Hyères, backing up their World Cup Series Miami win and Trofeo Princesa Sofia victories.
Despite the victory, Zegers first thoughts were on improvement when she reached ashore at the end of the day, "We didn't have a good race because we had a good start. But I am happy that we stayed cool and just did our best. If I look back at the whole week I am happy with the things that we have improved and happy with the things we know we still need to work on."
Zegers and van Veen crossed the line in fifth position in the Medal Race, but with a gold medal all but confirmed beforehand, the result wouldn't hurt as much. The same cannot be said for Great Britain's Amy Seabright and Anna Carpenter. The Britons came in last place, and with it the chance of a medal slipped away.
The medals instead went to Silvia Mas Depares and Patricia Cantero Reina (ESP) who claimed silver and Linda Fahrni and Maja Siegenthaler (SUI) who took bronze. Finishing on equal points, the Spanish team stand one step higher than their rivals on the podium thanks to a third-place Medal Race finish compared to the Swiss teams eighth.
As all the winners spray the champagne, wave to the crowd and collect their medals, focus will now shift to the 2017 World Cup Series Final in Santander, Spain this coming June.
Information on how to follow the event is below:
RESULTS / ENTRIES
A full list of sailors registered to sail in Hyères is available to view here - http://manage2sail.com/en-US/event/0adf7bcd-01d0-4214-a295-bb0b9136999e#!/entries?classId=7a9662de-4565-41e3-9008-4025d3177d5e
Results will be available from Tuesday 25 April via the World Cup Series results centre here - http://www.sailing.org/worldcup/results/index.php
Live tracking and competitor's analytics will be available via SAP Sailing Analytics throughout the event here - http://swc2017-hyeres.sapsailing.com/
High resolution imagery free for editorial usage will be provided throughout the World Cup Series by Sailing Energy. Imagery will be available to download via - http://worldsailing.photoshelter.com/gallery-collection/Sailing-World-Cup/C0000IVK9PByLpgw. The password to download is WSimages
Racing and action shots plus interviews in English and native language will be available throughout World Cup Series.
For further information please contact:
Sabina Mollart Rogerson
M: +44 (0) 7922 140 148
Medal Races on Saturday 29 and Sunday 30 April will be streamed live on World Sailing's Facebook and YouTube Channel.
WCS Hyères - Medal Races - 470, Finn, Laser, Laser Radial
URL - https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qiLMa8QoXWI
Embed - <iframe width="560" height="315" src="https://www.youtube.com/embed/ qiLMa8QoXWI" frameborder="0" allowfullscreen></iframe>
World Sailing will be releasing international press releases after racing throughout the duration of World Cup Hyères. All the latest news and reports will be available to read here - http://www.sailing.org/worldcup/news/index.php
Follow the event on World Sailing's social networks and get involved in the conversation using #WCSHyeres2017
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/worldsailingofficial/
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/worldsailingofficial/
Twitter - @worldsailing
Snapchat - Follow our Story on Snapchat, search for worldsailing
Source: Richard Apsland - World Sailing