Vallarta, Mexico – The ILCA 6 Masters World Championships kicked off today in Riviera Nayarit, Nueveo Vallarta, Mexico, and the two scheduled races were successfully completed. The weather is hot, but the competition is hotter as the ILCA 6 masters face off for the first major event of the year.
The sailors went afloat for the first race in 8–10 knots of wind, and a big left shift caught a few sailors by surprise. Sunny skies made for warm weather and a perfect 12–15 knot thermal breeze developed for the second race of the day. The stronger breeze allowed for perfect surfing conditions on the downwind legs. Interestingly, each division leader won both races today in their fleets, making a statement to their fellow competitors about the rest of the week’s racing.
In the Apprentice division, local sailor and four-time Olympian, Tania Calles, had a large lead in race one, but mistakenly sailed to the wrong mark on the final reach, allowing Jon Emmett of Great Britain to sneak past for the win. Emmett leads the way after the first day, ahead of Calles in second and Greek Antonios Kondis in third.
In the Masters division, Great Britain’s Ian Gregory and Niall Peelo hold first and second overall, respectively. American Sumeet Patel sits in third after the first day.
In the Grand Masters division, the largest division, David Luketina of Australia is atop the leaderboard, with American Toshinari Takayanagi in second and Canadian Allan Clark one point behind Takayanagi in third.
In the Great Grand Masters division, Australians Jeff Loosemoore and Patrick Levy sit in first and third respectively around Spain’s Miguel Noguer Castellvã in second.
In the Legends division, Americans hold the top three positions – Bill Symes leads the way with his two first-place finishes, and Jacques Kerrest is tied with Chris Boome for second and third as they both finished with a second and third place in today’s races.
Two races are scheduled for tomorrow. This event follows the same schedule as last week’s ILCA 7 Masters Championships – three days of racing, then one reserve day, and three days of racing to close out the championships.
International Laser Class Association (ILCA)