Third World Match Racing Tour win for Ian Williams

Photo: Chris Davies/WMRT
The Team GAC Pindar skipper describes his year on the World Match Racing Tour and Extreme Sailing Series
Ian Williams is in buoyant mood following his win not just of the Monsoon Cup in Malaysia at the weekend, but also of the 2011 World Match Racing Tour – the third time he has won match racing’s World Championship. Williams and his Team GAC Pindar crew of Bill Hardesty, Mal Parker, Gerry Mitchell and Matt Cassidy went into the Monsoon Cup with a small lead of 106 points ahead of Italian ace Francesco Bruni on 100 with young Australian Torvar Mirsky on 99.8. That provided them a little slack. “It meant that if we made the final and lost to either of them in the final, then we would still win the World Championship,” says Williams. “There was a vague possibility that we could not be the top of those three and still win, but it was unlikely because the reality of the Monsoon Cup is that you tend to end up having your showdown before the final. I don’t think it has ever gone to the final. The World Championship has always been decided in the quarters and semis.” Traditionally the Monsoon Cup claims one of the big scalps early on. In 2009 it was Williams' while last year defending champion Adam Minoprio failed to make it through. This year once again the clash came to a head in the Round Robins. Williams initially lost out to Torvar Mirsky and after this, on four wins and five losses with two flights to go, it was essential that they won the two races or Championship victory would slip through their fingers. Unfortunately next up was Francesco Bruni... “There were some pretty tense moments during that race,” recounts Williams of his match against the Italian. “We rounded the last top mark just behind, but we managed to soak inside and gybe on his air,