Richard reigns supreme
The island of Jebu sitting 2 km off Jeongok Marina could once again be seen today as great weather set in for the ultimate day of Stage 3 in the ISAF World Match Racing Tour. Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team is ‘King of Korea Match Cup’ after racing against the best pool of match racing skippers in the world and concluding Korea with a victory over double World Champion Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar.
Richard kept momentum at all times in the light airs up the concentrated course area which created a need for all the crew to use their bodyweight and drill the KM36 yachts into a series of smooth roll tacks and gybes to propel the Blakewell-White designed yachts round the race marks.
Richard was delighted to have won Korea Match Cup. Two years previously he was watching the skippers in the final hoping to reach it himself one day: “I have had a good feeling onboard since the beginning of the season and I am happy with the team”.
Williams has now been in the final at Korea Match Cup for the last three years, since the inception of the Korean leg of the WMRT. Williams however has not yet won this Tour stage and is seen as ‘always the bridesmaid and never the bride’. He is however, in good spirits despite missing out on the biggest prize money and spoke about Richard’s style on the race course, “Richard really nailed the starts today, every time he dominated the first exchange”.
The semis, sailed in the sheltered flat waters of Jeongok Port, saw Williams beat Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team and Richard taking a last minute lead over Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team, followed by an instantaneous on the water request for redress due to interference from a boat on the course, redress was then denied.
Korea Match Cup was beamed LIVE via television distributed to the Middle East, Africa and the USA as well as being available via the internet.
The weekend crowd was entertained by a variety of outdoors performances with a rock band and creative percussion. A matter of seconds from the race circuit were peddle boats, kayaks, sailing dinghies and water bumper cars for the public to personally test out why Gyeonggi is such a successful marine location.
The World Match Racing Tour’s 3rd Stage has changed the ISAF WMRT ranking. After 5 days of racing at Korea Match Cup Richard reigns at the top of the table with 65 points, Adam Minoprio (ETNZ) BlackMatch Racing also stays consistent with 39 points in 2nd. Williams who is an unstoppable force is climbing the ladder from 8th place to 3rd in one event and Mirsky moves up one position into 4th place, followed by Francesco Bruni (ITA) Azzurra in 5th.
The prize giving ceremony for Korea Match Cup was flanked by thousands of locals and the charismatic Governor of Gyeonggi, Moon-Soo Kim, presented the Korea Match Cup awards totalling 300,000,000 KRW (USD $240,770). The prize money afforded to the 2010 Tour events is the main force that pulls the professional match racing trade’s elite players to annually participate in this top sporting series.
Dong Young Kim, Event Promoter, Korea Match Cup spoke about the importance of this World Series event to their national sport development, “I am really impressed and it feels great to see that the status of the Korea Match Cup and recognition of Korean yachting is on the rise throughout the world. The long term goal for Korea Match Cup is that it will attract further sports and provide an opportunity for the Korean marine sports industry to develop further.”
The next Tour event will be Stage 4, in Portimão, for Portugal Match Cup running 22 – 27 June.
Day 5 - Overall Standings
1 Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team - 25 Points
2 Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar - 20 Points
3 Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team - 15 Points
4 Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team - 12 Points
5 Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing - 10 Points
6 Francesco Bruni (ITA) Azzurra - 8 Points
7 Adam Minoprio (NZL) ETNZ/BlackMatch Racing - 6 Points
8 Bertrand Pacé (FRA) Aleph Sailing Team - 4 Points
9 Johnie Berntsson (SWE) Berntsson Sailing Team
10 Paolo Cian (ITA) Team Italia
11 Phil Robertson (NZL) WAKA Racing Team
12 Park GunWoo (KOR) Busan Match
2010 ISAF World Match Racing Tour Standings (After Event 3 of 10)
1 Mathieu Richard (FRA) French Match Racing Team - 65 Points
2 Adam Minoprio (NZL) BlackMatch Racing - 39 Points
3 Ian Williams (GBR) Team GAC Pindar - 30 Points
4 Torvar Mirsky (AUS) Mirsky Racing Team - 28 Points
5 Francesco Bruni (ITA) Azzurra - 23 Points
6= Ben Ainslie (GBR) TEAMORIGIN - 20 Points
6= Jesper Radich (SWE) Radich Racing Team - 20 Points
8 Peter Gilmour (AUS) YANMAR Racing - 18 Points
9 Paolo Cian (ITA) Team Italia - 16 Points
10 Bjorn Hansen (SWE) Gill Global Team - 15 Points