Early lead for Outteridge

15 knots gusting 20 for day one of the CST Composites Moth World Championship

Tuesday August 11th 2009, Author: Michelle Slade, Location: United Kingdom
Working the shifts was today’s mantra for Day 1 of the CST Composites Moth Worlds, sailed at Cascade Locks, Oregon. The race committee got four races off in predominantly flat water but a shifting breeze that made for tough calls throughout the day. Racing started at noon in about 12 knots, and built to 15 with gusts to 20 at the bottom mark by late afternoon.

Racing was consistently tight at the top of the fleet with the top five finishers battling it out all day. The top ten finishers were: Nathan Outteridge (AUS) 8 points, Bora Gulari (USA) 12 points, Dalton Bergan (USA) 13 points, Simon Payne (GBR) 16 points, Arnaud Psarofaghis (SUI) 18 points, Rohan Veal (AUS) 21 points, Kevin Hall (NZL) 33 points, Rob Gough (AUS) 41 points, Andrew McDougall (AUS) 44 points, and Charlie McKee (USA) 44 points.

Today’s lighter air played well for boats, with few disabling breakages. Scott Babbage caught a DNF on Race 2, after his mast exploded as it hit the water on an unspectacular maneuver between races – reaching for his water bottle, which was unfortunate as he sailed a solid first race, and finished in the top five for both races 3 and 4.

Likewise for Gulari, who had a couple of spectacular starts, and in Race 3 had a solid 100 yard advantage over the entire fleet coming into the first top mark rounding only to blow it as he missed a puff coming out of the mark and capsized. But boat speed has been his close ally this past week and he put the pedal down to finish third in this race, almost making it past Payne who just got Gulari across the line.

Bora Gulari (USA) commented: "My first race I was winning pretty handily and just kind of had a brain fart at the bottom and capsized early on top of the finish line and let five boats go by. The next race I had a good one, got a second, the next race I won, and then the last race, I had a good battle with Nathan going up the first beat, I got the last few shifts, I think I had about a one hundred yard lead. I went around the weather mark and I was so anxious just to get going down the run just to get out of there, I eased my controls off, a puff hit and I literally got blown over and crashed into the offset mark – my face was up against the offset mark just as Nathan flew by yelling, “Circle, circle,” just adding salt to the wound at that point. I had to laugh. I did my turn and got back to third though. Some competitors were actually asking me if I did my circle, and I did! You can’t win a regatta on Day 1, but you can definitely lose it. I must have been about 12th at one point there, and I almost got second – getting all the way back up there was a huge accomplishment.

Swiss European champion Arnaud Psarofaghis said: "It’s really nice racing. I’ve had good starts and the boat is going really great. I’ve just made some mistakes - a bad tack one time when I was having a problem trimming. I just keeping doing stupid stuff. The racing’s really tight, all the guys are going fast, you just miss one shift and three or four boats pass you, so nice competition. The conditions are hard because it’s very shifty, the puff’s seem to come from nowhere. It’s hard.

Winner of the US Nationals last year, 49er World Championship Nathan Outteridge said: "I’ve just been staying in the right spots at the right time. I didn’t have a massive speed advantage, just stayed in the right spot and sailed relatively conservatively. It was really shifty as, so sometimes you had to be really risky to sail conservatively. But if you sailed too conservatively you’d get passed, so you had to have a plan and just stick to it, and if people pass you, be confident that you’ll get them back. Bora’s definitely going fast at the moment, the last two starts today were really good and he just got out of the blocks and caught a couple of good shifts and once he was in the lead he was doing a good job of staying in between us and the next mark and getting in phase. In the second race he was leading and at the top mark capsized on the spacer mark and had to take a turn so he reckons I owe him a burger or something. It’s awesome racing with this many boats at such a high level. Scott (Babbage) and I were just saying that if we could do this all the time, it would be incredible. We sail around with three boats at home, and we think that’s fun, but a fleet this size and mixing it up, it’s cool."

Former Moth World Championship Simon Payne said: "I’ve had a couple of good races today but the last race was frustrating. There were about six of us coming into the finish, Nathan was just in front, and it was so close and I just got into third place when the barge came past so there was a wind shadow and massive waves, Scotty just nose-dived and that put me back. Sometimes in this game you’re the pigeon and sometimes you’re the statue, right? But it will all come back and it was all great racing. What am I doing right? Well, I’m a lot lighter than everyone else – 65kgs – so have to work for every foot, so I’m sailing well downwind, getting out of the start ok, and the boat’s carrying me a little bit. Ideally we’ll get a little bit of everything in this regatta and if it goes light, I’ll be on fire.

US 49er sailor Dalton Bergan said: "It’s been pretty good. I crumbled a little bit this afternoon. I capsized after my first tack off the line - bad sailing on my part - and in the last race I had a pretty bad start. I got tangled up with a couple of guys who were out of control and it was tight. What seems to be working for me … I have a pretty cool sail, made by Dan Kessler in Seattle. It seems to be working well and that’s helped. And, I haven’t had any breakdowns. The course is great, so is the racing.

Australian Scott Babbage described his crash between Race 1 and 2: "I was just getting a drink bottle between races and I tipped the boat over and the mast just exploded as it hit the water. The first race I didn’t do too well, I had a poor start and got boxed out at the boat end so I didn’t have enough time to get up to speed by the time the gun went so I was probably about 20 seconds late, behind the guys who got off first. I had to go back to shore for a new mast and sail, and went straight back out…only to find that they had called a break. Good workout."

Emirates Team NZ afterguard, Kevin Hall said: "My races were okay. I got horrible starts in the first two races. In the first I tried to start right to windward of Nathan and that was a big mistake. He’d just got going and it was a really light spot and I eased my foils and suddenly everyone was gone. I had a lot of catch up to do but made it into the top ten so I was happy with that. It turns out I’m going better downwind at the moment and not so well upwind. Go figure, as soon as I work it out I’ll let you know! The second race was solid but not great. But the racing’s great, it’s so much fun. My gear seems to be working fine, but that being said I’ve been working pretty much flat-out since I got here a week ago to make sure the boat holds together but that’s just part of it. I tuned up a little with Bora before the start and that’s a good benchmark obviously. Dalton sailed really well today, and Nathan’s pretty handy so he’s always going to be there too."

Results:

Pos Helm Nat R1 R2 R3 R4 Tot Net
1 Nathan Outteridge AUS 3 1 3 1 8 8
2 Bora Gulari USA 6 2 1 3 12 12
3 Dalton Bergan USA 1 3 7 2 13 13
4 Simon Payne GBR 2 5 2 7 16 16
5 Arnaud Psarofaghis SUI 4 4 6 4 18 18
6 Rohan Veal AUS 5 6 4 6 21 21
7 Kevin Hall NZL 8 7 9 9 33 33
8 Rob Gough AUS 12 10 11 8 41 41
9 Andrew McDougall AUS 9 8 12 15 44 44
10 Charlie McKee USA 11 9 13 11 44 44
11 Brad Funk USA 22 12 8 10 52 52
12 George Peet USA 15 11 14 13 53 53
13 Adam May GBR 14 13 15 16 58 58
14 Scott Babbage AUS 7 44.0 DNF 5 5 61 61
15 Mark Robinson SIN 13 15 16 20 64 64
16 Glenn Raphael UAE 17 17 26 12 72 72
17 Chris Graham UAE 10 44.0 DNF 10 14 78 78
18 Andrew Friend GBR 18 20 18 22 78 78
19 Andy Mack USA 20 16 24 21 81 81
20 Sean "Doogie" Couvreux USA 19 19 22 24 84 84
21 Hans Henken USA 21 22 20 23 86 86
22 Adam Lowry USA 28 18 17 27 90 90
23 Chris Williams USA 25 23 25 18 91 91
24 Morgan Larson USA 16 14 19 44.0 DNF 93 93
25 Zach Maxam USA 24 26 30 26 106 106
26 Chris Steele NZL 23 50.0 DNC 23 17 113 113
27 Mikis Psarofaghis SUI 26 44.0 DNF 21 25 116 116
28 Tim Wadlow USA 32 25 29 32 118 118
29 Matt Pistay USA 31 28 31 29 119 119
30 Giovanni Galeotti BEL 45.0 OCS 21 27 28 121 121
31 Lindsay Bergan USA 27 24 36 37 124 124
32 Ian Andrewes USA 30 31 35 30 126 126
33 James Phare GBR 29 27 37 34 127 127
34 Jonathan McKee USA 39 44.0 DNF 28 19 130 130
35 Andy Mills CAN 35 36 32 31 134 134
36 Will Logan AUS 38 29 33 35 135 135
37 Bates McKee USA 34 30 39 33 136 136
38 James Cole SIN 33 33 34 44.0 DNF 144 144
39 Matt Noble USA 36 34 38 38 146 146
40 Nigel Oswald USA 37 32 42 36 147 147
41 Gerold Pauler USA 42 35 44 39 160 160
42 Devin Bader USA 41 44.0 DNF 40 44.0 DNF 169 169
43 Naomi Tachibana JPN 40 44.0 DNF 43 44.0 DNF 171 171
44 Jack Driscoll USA 44 44.0 DNF 41 44.0 DNF 173 173
45 Anthony Boscolo USA 43 37 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 180 180
46 Joe Bousquet USA 45 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 195 195
47 Paul Kilkenny USA 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 200 200
47 Dan Brandt USA 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 200 200
49 Karl Wittnebel USA 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 50.0 DNC 200 200

More photos on the following pages....

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