Roland Gaebler at the Tornado Worlds

Runner-up and first mixed team

Monday August 29th 2011, Author: Roland Gaebler, Location: Switzerland

World Champions! Victory in the new Olympic Sailing discipline of 'Mixed Catamaran Sailing' and runners up in the Open World championship in the Tornado class.

What a grand finale. 4 races in one day. Throughout winds were 18 to 28 knots with squalls coming down from the mountains, an average over 20 knots. And in Switzerland, on Lake Biel. This final day has saved the Tornado World Championship and certainly made history in this fast boat class.

There was a lot of waiting for the wind. Many attempts to start. And then the real hammer at the end of the series. Our victory in the final race was an amazing experience. Especially in the strong breeze. Nahid, as crew did an amazing job to handle mainsail and gennaker in these  rough wind and wave conditions.

The victory in the new Olympic sailing discipline 'Mixed Multihull' was already safely secrued before the race. And before the last race we had even held the lead. But by the fifth race, a discard kicked into the standings and the Greeks Jordanis Paschalides / Kostas Trigonis took the lead in the open class.

With the series 2-3-1 - (8) -1, we are actually sailed better than our World Cup victory last year. But in the end, unfortunately, we lacked a point. But runner-up in the open class pleased us very much.

The world champion title in the new Olympic sailing discipline 'Mixed Multihull' makes us very happy. And the top three teams in the last day the high winds have come through with flying colours.

We are especially proud that we have survived after capsizing in the fourth race. The righting after capsize cost us very much, but we did not give up, but we again gave everything to get back to overtake a few teams. Thanks to the ultralight carbon mast, which allow us to continue the race.

But we were not the only ones that happened to. At times, the race course looked like a battlefield - capsized boats were everywhere. Avoiding the strong and gusty winds was a real challenge. It was almost like a slalom race through a junkyard. The wind was extremely gusty and often we open all sails. The jib came to the other side on downwind because the wind was so strong.

Such a final day with four races in such extreme conditions have never taken place in the Tornado class ever.

35 teams from 11 nations were at the start. With this, the best teams from Brazil, Australia and Greece.

But we had some bad luck. With two light wind races we were leading. Only one of them would have gone through, we had also won the open championship.

The last day has brought many small blue spots and bruises. We are very tired now. We take a rest and can sail from 8-11th the European Championships on Lake Como.

Full results here

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