Please select your home edition
Edition
Lennon Thermalite 728x90 3

2016 WIM Series Buddy Melges Challenge - Overall

by Joakim Hermansson on 26 Sep 2016 21-25 September 2016
World Championship gold medals secured for Anna Östling and Annie and Linnea Wennergren, in Sheboygan, USA © Niklas Axhede / WIM Series

Gold to Swede Anna Östling in Sheboygan

Anna Östling with crew Annie and Linnea Wennergren are the 2016 Women's Match Racing World Champions. In the Buddy Melges Challenge, the 3rd event of the 2016 WIM Series, the Swedes defeated Anne-Claire Le Berre, Mathilde Geron and Alice Ponsar of France, in a thrilling final over five exciting matches on Lake Michigan:

"They had us under extreme pressure during four fierce fights, and it wasn't until the very last match we were allowed to breathe, but then just a bit" says Östling.

Their room to breathe a little came in handy in the fifth match, when they managed to force the French over early to the course side of the starting line. Le Berre had to turn back behind the line, and the Swedes took advantage of that situation to gain a lead they would keep throughout the match:

"I'm exhausted right now, but very, very happy. We've been fighting so hard for this the last few days, it's been really crazy. When we woke up this morning we felt very strong," Östling comments.

Anna Östling took her first World Championship gold in Cork, Ireland, in 2014, and this year's medal is a milestone in a very successful year so far. Her Sheboygan triumph is her third consecutive WIM Series victory, after winning earlier in Helsinki, Finland, as well as in Lysekil, Sweden. With this result Team Anna stretches their WIM Series lead further, as only the regattas in Busan, South Korea, and St Thomas, US Virgin Islands, remain: "Our World Championship gold is one more step towards this year's big goal for us; to win the WIM Series. This year we've found calm and focus in our crew as never before, so we're definitely prepared for becoming the overall winners," says Östling.

After a maternity leave of almost one year, Anne-Claire Le Berre came back to the WIM Series just for this World Championship, aiming for the final and for a medal to put around her neck. This time it's silver, but the gold wasn't very far away:

"My girls did a very good job to keep the speed up, and I'm not sure more advance practise would have helped us today. We made a few more mistakes than Anna, and that cost. Now we're looking forward to the next event in South Korea," says Le Berre.

The petite final saw the two top teams from the round-robin stage battling it out for third place and the Women's Match Racing World Championship bronze medals. After three incredibly tight matches, with schoolbook match racing containing several lead changes, spectacular mark roundings and stunning manoeuvres, Renée Groeneveld proved to be the strongest skipper at the end. Her Dutch team of Lobke Berkhout and Mijke Lievens beat American Epic Racing, with skipper Stephanie Roble and crew Maggie Shea and Janel Zarkowsky, 2 – 1:

"We had a couple of split starts where we got away very good, allowing us to play our game. We crossed to the right side and defended it, but today it was really hard to stay in front while leading," Groeneveld explains.

Roble & Co won the round-robin stage 14 – 2, looking very strong up until the final day of racing on their home waters of Lake Michigan. Fourth place in the regatta was certainly not what the reigning WIM Series champion had hoped for, but Stephanie Roble concealed her disappointment well:

"We had really close racing all day, and I'm pretty sure all of the four teams could have won. It was a tough day and everyone raced very well, but unfortunately we made more mistakes than the others," she concludes.

Buddy Melges Challenge Results:

1. Anna Östling, Annie Wennergren, Linnea Wennergren, SWE, 25, 2 600 USD
2. Anne-Claire Le Berre, Mathilde Geron, Alice Ponsar, FRA, 22, 1 600 USD
3. Renée Groeneveld, Lobke Berkhout, Mijke Lievens, NED, 20, 1 300 USD
4. Stephanie Roble, Maggie Shea, Janel Zarkowsky, USA, 18, 1 100 USD
5. Caroline Sylvan, Louise Kruuse af Verchou, Frida Langenius, SWE, 16, 1 000 USD
6. Samantha Norman, Carla Holgate, Taylor Holland, NZL, 14, 900 USD
7. Pauline Courtois, Jeanne Courtois, Juliette Le Friec, FRA, 12, 800 USD
8. Nicole Breault, Molly Carapiet, Karen Loutzenheiser, USA, 10, 700 USD
9. Elizabeth Shaw, Madeline Gill, Malin Holmberg, CAN, 8, 0 USD

Final Results
Anna Östling, SWE – Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 3 – 2

Petite Final Results
Renée Groeneveld, NED – Stephanie Roble, USA, 2 – 1

Semi Final Results
Stephanie Roble, USA – Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 1 – 3
Anna Östling, SWE – Renée Groeneveld, NED, 3 – 1

2016 WIM Series Standings: (after three events out of five)

1. Anna Östling, SWE, 75pts
2. Pauline Courtois, FRA, 48pts
3. Caroline Sylvan, SWE, 48pts
4. Stephanie Roble, USA, 40pts
5. Renée Groeneveld, NED, 40pts
6. Camilla Ulrikkeholm Klinkby, DEN, 38pts
7. Anne-Claire Le Berre, FRA, 22pts
8. Marinella Laaksonen, FIN, 21pts
9. Lotte Meldgaard, DEN, 18pts
10. Samantha Norman, NZL, 14pts
11. Sanna Häger, SWE, 14pts
12. Alexa Bezel, SUI, 12pts
13. Rikst Dijkstra, NED, 12pts
14. Nicole Breault, USA, 10pts
15. Johanna Bergqvist, SWE, 10pts
16. Antonia Degerlund, FIN, 10pts
17. Elizabeth Shaw, CAN, 8pts
18. Susanna Kukkonen FIN, 8pts
19. Diana Kissane, IRL, 7pts
20. Sanna Mattsson, SWE, 5pts

The next event on the 2016 WIM Series is the Busan Cup Women's International Match Race in Busan, South Korea, October 25 – 29.

Related Articles

Australian Youth Match Racing day 1
NSW teams in fine form The 2017 Sharp Australian Youth Match Racing Championship got underway today at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia with 8 of the 9 flights in round robin one completed in a gusty and chilling south easterly breeze. Posted today at 11:04 am
Five States to battle it out
For Australia's Youth Match Racing Championship Trophy For the second year, the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia will host the 2017 SHARP Australian Youth Match Racing Championship with ten teams from five States set to battle it out on Sydney Harbour to be named Australia's top youth match racing team. Posted on 23 Sep
Blind Fleet Racing Worlds at Sheboygan overall
Great Britain become World Champions GBR woke on the final day with all to play for in the B1, B3 fleets. The wind was light from the South South Westerly which through the morning swung to the West. The B2 and B3 were out first with two races scheduled. Posted on 19 Sep
Blind Fleet Racing Worlds at Sheboygan day 4
GBR getting to grips with the conditions The GBR team woke to glorious sailing conditions with the wind from the South at 12-14 knots with a slight chop from the South East. Posted on 16 Sep
Blind Fleet Racing Worlds at Sheboygan day 3
A solid day for GBR sailors Teams woke again to fog but the forecast showed it to lift early morning. B1s were up first with the race officer hoping to fit in 3 or 4 races. Posted on 15 Sep
Blind Fleet Racing Worlds at Sheboygan day 2
Fog lifts to allow for some fierce racing GBR pulled the curtains back to be met with fog, but B2 & B3 headed down to the water in hope for racing. But by 11 o'clock the fog was still thick, which saw the racing postponed for the day. Posted on 14 Sep
Blind Fleet Racing Worlds at Sheboygan day 1
GBR Blind Sailing get off to a solid start Sail Sheboygan welcomed 14 teams from 5 countries from around the World with all teams under the control of Principal Race Officer Richard Reichelsdorfer. Great Britain, under the coaching of Steve Irish, got off to a great start. Posted on 13 Sep
Simon Bertheau wins inaugural title
In the European Match Race Tour French skipper Simon Bertheau and his team APCC Team Jeune secured the victory in the first European Match Race Tour with an impressive win over reigning European Champion Maxime Mesnil. Posted on 12 Sep
British team arrive in the USA
For the 2017 Blind Fleet Racing Worlds GBR have landed in Sheboygan, the weather is warm and the breeze is steady 12 - 15 knots. The blind fleet racing is raced in a team of four in sight categories B1, B2, and B3. Posted on 11 Sep
Marinassess Women's Match Racing Regatta
Costanzo takes the win in Sydney Royal Prince Alfred Yacht Club's Clare Costanzo, Emma May, Hannah Lanz, Amy Lee and Annie Scholten have won the CYCA Youth Sailing Academy's 2017 Marinassess Women's Match Racing Regatta following an action-packed weekend on Sydney Harbour. Posted on 11 Sep