Brazilians Reach ISAF Nations Cup Grand Final After South American Regional Victory
Brazil will represent South America at the ISAF Nations Cup Grand Final in Sheboygan, USA in September.
, in the open division, and Juliana Senfft
, in the women's division, won the South American ISAF Nations Cup Regional Final held from Thursday to Saturday in Porto Alegre, Brazil.
Argentina's Juan Grimaldi
defeated Daniel Mendoza
(PER) to set up a final against Haddad. The Brazilian defeated Grimaldi 3-2 in the best of five series. But Haddad had a nervous start in the final losing the first race. Grimaldi sailed very well throughout the first four races to set up a decisive final race.
After overcoming a penalty the Argentine lead on the second upwind leg. But soon after the windwark mark Haddad took the lead on the downwind leg and did not let Grimaldi reclaim the lead.
In the end Haddad claimed victory by the tip of the bow in what was a very tense and exciting finale to a successful regatta.
Haddad said, "I've met Grimaldi in several championships. The round robin was quite relaxed but in the final we had some difficulties.
"I think it was overconfidence, we should have been more conservative at the start of the race but we improved and match racing is so quick that mistakes can happen."
The Brazilian skipper is very pleased to be back at the Nations Cup Grand Final in 2009, ranked second in the competition which was also held in the Veleiros do Sul, in Porto Alegre.
In the women's division skipper Juliana Senfft and her crew Nicolino Gabriela and Daniela Adler ended the South American qualifier unbeaten, both in the round robin and in the final.
They won 3-0 over the team led by Peruvian Tania Zimmermann
. Senfft was thrilled with the result that served as encouragement for her team.
Senfft said, "It will be nice to represent Brazil at the ISAF Nations Cup final again with Haddad after our performance in 2009 where we placed sixth. Our goal now is to improve the classification.
"We have competed five times in Sheboygan and we have good connections there as a family regularly hosts us.
"The ISAF Nations Cup is a beautiful competition and will be our main focus this year."
The ISAF Nations Cup is a global competition to find the world's top match racing nations in both open and women's events and to develop match racing infrastructure around the world. The Nations Cup encompasses a series of eight Regional Finals from March to July 2011, from which the top team will qualify for the ISAF Nations Cup Grand Final, which will take place in Sheboygan, USA from 13-18 September 2011.