Despite the cold temperatures, the sailors all had sunny smiles during the first day of racing at the 2017 Women’s International Match Racing Series (WIM Series) final event – the International Bedanne’s Cup.
The local team of top ranked French skipper Pauline Courtois leads the way with six wins and one loss in her home waters. “We are happy with the sunny day and the results, but the sailing today was not easy with lots of shifts,” described Courtois.
With the forecast for the remainder of the week showing strong winds and rain, everyone was very happy with the sunshine and light winds that dominated the waters of the Base de loisirs de Bedanne (Lake Bedanne). “We will try to run a lot of flights today while the sun is shining as I am quite afraid of the days to come with the low pressure coming again and bringing lots of wind and rain,” Principal Race Officer, Anne Malledant, explained before racing today. And her prediction proved to be true as eleven flights (33 races) were sailed in bright sunshine and westerly winds that varied from 3 to 8 knots with racing ending just as the sun set for the day.
Pauline Courtois and her Match in Pink by Normandie Elite Team had a solid first day with six wins and only one loss to stand alone at the top of the leaderboard. Sailing in her home water off of the Club de Voile Saint Aubin Elbeuf, Courtois and her team felt comfortable with the boats and the sunshine, but thought the conditions were not easy. “We were very happy to have sunshine, but the conditions were tricky – very difficult to anticipate the shifts which were both in direction and intensity,” Courtois said with a smile as she warmed up inside the clubhouse after the long day on the water.
Close behind Courtois on the leaderboard are two teams with six wins and two losses each – French Women’s Match Racing Sailing Team skippered by Anne-Claire Le Berre and Team BAAM with skipper Allie Blecher from the USA. Le Berre is making her return to the WIM Series after taking the first part of the season off to concentrate on her work and family. “We are happy to be back. Our first race was not so good as we felt a little rusty, but we are getting better with time,” laughed Le Berre at the end of the day.
Blecher is a newcomer to the WIM Series and enjoying sailing in her first event: “We psyched to have the opportunity to sail in a WIM Series event and we are hoping to take full advantage of that opportunity here. We were happy today with the conditions – we like the flat water and the shiftiness. So far, so good.”
Racing will continue tomorrow with the intention of the race committee to complete the first round robin and begin the second.
Results in the 2017 International Bedanne’s Cup, the fourth and final event of the 2017 WIM Series, after day one of the double round-robin (skipper, nationality, team, wins – losses):
1- Pauline Courtois, FRA, Match in Pink by Normandy Elite Team, 6-1
2- Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, French Women's Match Racing Sailing Team, 6-2
3- Allie Blecher, USA, Team BAAM, 6-2
4- Margot Vennin, FRA, Team CVSAE, 5-2
5- Marinella Laaksonen, FIN, L2 Match Racing Team, 4-3
6- Margot Riou, FRA, APCC Women's Sailing Team, 3-5
7- Linnéa Floser, SWE, Peregrine Racing, 2-5
8- Sanna Mattsson, SWE, Swedish Women's Match Racing Team, 1-6
9- Ekaterina Kochkina, RUS, ProKateam Sailing Team, 0-7
The International Bedanne’s Cup in Tourville-la-Rivière, France, continues with round-robin racing on Wednesday leading up to the final races, prize giving and closing ceremony on Saturday.