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An Oasis of Sailing at Pwllheli: A Britpop International Canoe Worlds preview

by Gareth Caldwell 14 Aug 2017 19:59 BST 19-25 August 2017
Richard Bowers ahead of the International Canoe Worlds © Brian Drake

What's The Story? A British World IC Champion? Definitely, Maybe...

The Talk Tonight will be about the XX World Championships for the IC to be held at Plas Heli Centre in Pwllheli from 19th - 25th August. A supporting cast as glittering as a Champagne Supernova with competitors from USA, Canada, Ukraine, Norway, Australia and Britain that include multiple World Champions, the scene is set for one of the most contested World's in the last decade.

Some Might Say that Robin Wood, recently crowned 2017 National Champion and sailing on Welsh water would be the bookies favourite, but he Cast No Shadow on Al Warren who finished a close second and was a top three finisher in the windy conditions at San Fransisco in the last Worlds. Both are excellent sailors who have dominated the British scene during the last few years.

Phil Robin has continued to show consistent high placing in the Opens and Nationals, and will Roll With It whatever the wind and sea state. Expect another consistent series with the corresponding high place finish.

Steve Clarke is the archetypical Rock and Roll Star - fast talking, fast cars and fast boats. He is also half of the brains of C12 Composites who make the Morrison 3, and will be keen to lead by example and steer his recently launched boat to some good places. With three new boats on the water from C12, Steve is one to watch in a F4.

Peter Ullmann leads the European charge, and has proven World's experience showing Supersonic speed at times in San Francisco.

The challenge from across the pond is led by a dual prong attack - Steve Clark and Chris Maas. Exceptional sailors and boat designers, and current New York Canoe Club Sailing Challenge Cup holders, both have a Bring it on Down attitude and expect a top three position from either/ both these athletes.

In the AC fleet, Steve Bowen - recently qualified as a helicopter pilot - will need to maintain his calm and not Look Back in Anger in order to take home the top prize.

With a boat named Incognito, Simon Allen prefers to slip beneath the radar and Slide Away unnoticed... but he is a past European and National Champion who makes predicting the IC results to be Up In The Sky.

Both Colin Brown and Mike Fenwick are not to be overlooked if the winds are light. Colin remains focussed, has cut down on his Cigarettes and Alcohol, and increased his gym routine. Both Colin and Mike have impressive sailing CVs, and are experts in strategic sailing. Ones to watch.

The action throughout the week can be followed on

Thank you to the main sponsor Hytera Communications of China and to Gwin Llyn Wines and Firmhelm Marine whose support is appreciated.

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