A building southerly Adelaide breeze gave sailors a challenging second day of ILCA Masters sailing in Adelaide today with glamour conditions turning to extremely fresh by day’s end.
Racing got underway close to scheduled start time and all fleets completed two races, however with the forecast set to build throughout the day, by the end of the second race the breeze was consistently hitting more than 20 knots.
ILCA 7 Masters sailor, and former Olympic Finn sailor, Brendan Casey said the vibe at this regatta was really enjoyable and brought people together for great sailing, as well as some fantastic off-water culture.
“It’s my first Masters World Championships and while I’ve obviously done a lot of elite sailing, it was 18 years ago since my last ILCA event, but I’m feeling really energized,” he said.
Casey, who is leading the ILCA 7 Masters fleet after Day 2 with two race wins today, said Masters regattas were what sailing was all about.
“I think this is why everyone keeps coming back, you’re meeting up with friends you haven’t seen for a long time, you’re sharing your experiences and you’re around a common group of people that have a passion for sailing – and it’s a real passion for life,” he said.
“The racing and the banter is good, everyone wants to do well and everyone sails the boats to the best of their abilities, which keeps the racing quite tight.
“I’m in the Masters division and we are combined with the Apprentices, so it’s a good sizable fleet to have, where you have to make good decisions to get to the front of the fleet.”
Casey said he had fond memories sailing in Adelaide and also had a family connection, so it was nice to come back to South Australia for this event.
“Sailing off here in these waters is one of my favourite places to sail in Australia, great sea conditions, waves, wind, the volunteers and everyone involved in organising not just the Masters event, but the series of events we’ve had, it’s been first class,” he said.
“It’s really nice to hear positive feedback from everyone around the world about Adelaide and whether they’ve visited wineries or, they’ve gone into the city, whatever’s been on they’ve tried it out.”
After four races, the results are starting to take shape with clear leaders emerging in a number of divisions.
In the Apprentice fleets, New Zealand’s Luke Deegan leads the ILCA 7s with four race wins from as many races, while Germany’s Svenja Weger leads the ILCA 6s with by three points to Argentina’s Franco Riquelme Antonetti, who won both races today.
Some great battles are emerging in the Masters fleets with Brendan Casey (AUS) leading the ILCA 7 Masters by just one point to Christoph Bottoni (AUS), while Simon Small (AUS) leads the ILCA 6s by just one point to Jon Emmett (GBR).
Brett Beyer (AUS) had two race wins today in the ILCA 7 Grand Masters fleet, giving himself a strong lead, while Mark Tonner-Joyce (AUS) leads Andrew Holdsworth (USA) by just one point in the ILCA 6 Grand Masters.
Steve Gunther (AUS) had two race wins in the breeze today in the ILCA 7 Great Grand Masters fleet to give himself a strong lead after the drop, while Terry Scutcher (GBR) holds just a slender one-point lead in the ILCA 6 Great Grand Masters with James Mitchell (AUS) hot on his heels after two wins today.
And in the ILCA 6 Legends fleet it was William Symes (USA) who won his fourth race from four today to help build a strong lead after the first two days.
Tomorrow appears to have another healthy forecast, however with some sore bodies after today, just how windy it is will be the big question.
For full results, and more information about the event, head to https://ilca2024adelaide.ilca-worlds.org/
Story author: Harry Fisher, Down Under Sail
Photo credit: Harry Fisher, Down Under Sail
Video credit: Jordan Roberts, Down Under Sail