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F18 World Championship at Sarasota Sailing Squadron - Day 1

by Ellinor Walters 16 Oct 2018 05:50 BST 12-19 October 2018
F18 Worlds at Sarasota day 1 © Ellinor Walters

The F18 World Championship got their first race of the event underway today on Sarasota Bay. The fleet is comprised of 68 teams from 14 different countries, representing the best talent of the class globally. This is the second time that the event has been hosted in the United States.

Australian team 526, Brett Burvill and Max Puttnam currently hold the first place position, after battling it out on the course in tough conditions.

"It goes back to the competitive nature of the class and really trying to be the best in the world. We came here to keep trying to back our result, says Puttman, who had a strong finish in Spain earlier this year. "This is the premier class in the catamaran world at the moment and we wanted to come and see where we were among the fleet."

Light breeze on the bay challenged the focus of competitors, and the patience of race committee who ultimately decided to cut the day's racing short.

Local sailor Nicholas Lovisa had to say of the conditions, "We had decent breeze throughout the first race, but after we finished it lightened up a lot. You have to be "head-out-of-the-boat" and constantly talking to your crew. Fine tuning is important to make sure you are going as fast as possible."

Despite the lack of wind, the mood onshore was positive. "The F18 has become the elite class, everyone is so generous with their information and willing to share." says Burvill.

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