Echegoyen still undefeated
As the Thursday flights of the ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship 2013 in Busan went on, Spanish star Tamara Echegoyen shined brighter and sunnier for each match, lining up victory after victory on the Korean waters.
She is still undefeated, but in the last match of the day, against local hope Sung-Eun Choi, it didn’t look too good in the prestart.
The jib head on the Spanish boat broke and tore completely off, forcing bowman Lara Cabaleros to tie the halyard with a knot around the upper end of the remaining sail. It didn’t work properly until after her third attempt, and then Tamara Echegoyen and her crew had to sail safely, without sheeting the jib too much. They managed to keep within reasonable distance from the Korean boat upwind, and then overtook them with superior down wind speed.
“This was one of the strangest things I’ve ever seen on a match racing course,” Principal Race Officer Peter Reggio of the USA commented, smiling and shaking his head.
The second day of round robin racing brought new challenges for the nine teams competing for a 100,000 USD prize purse at the ISAF Women’s Match Racing Championship 2013, which is also the second event of the inaugural Women’s International Match Racing Series, in Busan, Korea.
Yesterday might be considered a warm-up as the crews today were challenged by the physical nature of sailing the K30 (Bakewell-White 9m) boats in more breeze. The first teams ashore showed relief after finishing sailing for the day, and many took advantage of the free massages offered at the venue by the local massage training school.
Katie Spithill of Australia is back on the match racing scene after having had a break for a year or so, and then being on maternity leave for another half year. Leaving her six months baby daughter ashore, she and her partially new crew approaches the course in order to have fun out there, “Well, in the first place we went to this event just to have fun, but then we decided that it’s only fun if we win,” she laughs, showing the fighting spirit she’s known for.
“Today was OK, but not more. It wasn’t awful, but it wasn’t really good either,” she comments on losing three matches and winning just two.
“For the rest of the regatta we have to stop making the same stupid mistakes we unfortunately have done so far, we have to move forward as a team and I’m sure we can.”
Former London 2012 Olympian Anna Kjellberg of Sweden celebrated her country’s National Day by winning five matches and losing just one. She was happy improving to fourth place on the scoreboard, after yesterday’s doubtful start of the ISAF Women’s Match Racing Championship 2013, “We kept it all better together today, beginning with excellent starts that made the rest so much easier than yesterday. Lack of speed was also a problem we had yesterday, but we solved that too,” she sighs relieved.
“The key to success is being able to analyse and make changes, rather than focusing too much on the actual problem,” she concludes.
1. Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) 12 – 0
2. Ekaterina Skudina (RUS) 9 – 2
3. Camilla Ulrikkeholm (DEN) 7 – 4
4. Anna Kjellberg (SWE) 6 – 5
5. Katie Spithill (AUS) 7 – 6
6. Claudia Pierce (NZL) 5 – 7
7. Alexa Bezel (SUI) 4 – 8
8. Susannah Pyatt (NZL) 3 – 9
9. Sung-Eun Choi (KOR) 1 – 13