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Thomas Hansson-Mild back at No 1 in largest ever OK Dinghy World Ranking List

by Robert Deaves 24 Oct 2022 05:58 BST
Thomas Hansson-Mild back at No.1 © Robert Deaves

Following the conclusion of the 2022 season's major events, the October 2022 release of the OK Dinghy World Ranking List marks a pivotal moment in its 17-year history, passing more than 600 names for the first time. This further highlights the ongoing growth in the class.

This largest list ever includes results from the World Championship in Marstrand, the European Championship in Bandol and the national championships in Sweden, Britain, Denmark, Germany, Sweden, Poland and Belgium.

Sweden's Thomas Hansson-Mild reclaims the World No 1 spot with a significant points lead, while the rest of the top 10 has seen a landscape change from the previous release, which was the first list released after a two-year pause due to the pandemic. Of the rest of the former top 10, only second placed Greg Wilcox, from New Zealand, remains, in second place, with Sönke Behrens, from Germany, climbing from 22nd to third on the back of a good season.

The big climbers though are the Swedes, with Niklas Edler climbing from 141st to tenth, after winning the Swedish championship and finishing as runner up at the World Championship. In addition, Håkan Soderberg moves from 223rd to eighth and Patric Mure from 176th to fifth.

World Champion Charlie Cumbley, from Britain, moves from 106 to 76, but only has one counting event, while the bronze medallist in Marstrand, Lars Johan Brodtkorb, from Norway, moves from 14th to sixth.

At the Swedish championship, Hansson-Mild was second to Edler, with Urban Nyhammer third. The Danish championship again proved competitive with Jens Eckartd, fourth in worlds, winning from Bo Petersen and Johan Bjorling.

Petersen would later go on to win the European Championship in Bandol, from Stefan de Vries, from The Netherlands, and France's Valerian Lebrun, but drops from eighth to 18th after pulling out of the World Championship following a couple of letter scores. The lost points from this cost him a much higher world ranking.

Oliver Gronholtz won the German championship for the first time and moves up to 38th. Andre Budzien was second with Axel Fischer in third. Meanwhile at the Belgian championship Peter van Laer won from Ralf Mackmann and Christian Heinze at a new venue in the south, though unfortunately the weather did not really cooperate.

Rounding off the championships, Jaroslaw Radzski won the Polish title from Marek Bernat and Michal Strumnik, while Russel Clark won the British title from Paul Childs and Mure.

It's interesting to note that of the 110-boat fleet in Marstrand and the 80-boat fleet in Bandol, only 24 sailors did both events. This bodes well for the future with a growing base of sailors willing to travel. A fleet of around 100 is predicted for the 2023 World Championship in Lyme Regis in Britain, while it would be no surprise to see 150 or more at the 2023 Europeans at Arco on Lake Garda in September.

The OK Dinghy class is OK.

Full list available here.

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