Victory after 15 attempts

We talk to Ian Pinnell who has finally added the 505 World Championship crown to his list
While younger, nippier boats may have come onto the scene, few have stolen the hearts of so many top sailors as the 505 has done. Two weeks ago the 505 World Championships took place in Palermo, Italy. The regatta was won by Ian Pinnell - who has been trying to win the event for more than 18 years, having attended the worlds on 15 different occasions - and his crew Carl Gibbon - the 27 year old is a new crew to Pinnell with the pair only having teamed up at the end of the last World Championships in Adelaide. Well known throughout the sailing community, Pinnell started sailing in Mirrors and Enterprises. He has since sailed all manner of classes including the N12, 420, 470, Miracle, Enterprise, Fireball, 505, Soling, Mumm 30, Melges 24 and International 14. Impressively Pinnell has won 36 World, European and National championships and won the 1989 Endeavour (Champion of Champions) Trophy. However, up until this year the 505 World Championships crown had always eluded him. Partly due to this and partly due to his love of the boat, the 505 class has become his main focus over the last five years or so. So passionate is Pinnell about the 505 and particularly the calibre of sailor it attracts that he believes winning the event is materially harder than winning the Olympic Games. “When you look at the number of boats – 122 this year – along with the skill of the sailors and the fact that more than one boat is allowed to enter from each country, I think it is fair to say it is harder to win than the Games.” The sailmaker is, understandably, pleased with his win at the Worlds and it is clear this result is not just a boon for him,