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10 January 2011, 11:26 am
Belen Tavella and Franco Greggi 2011 29er World Champions
29er World Championships 2011
2011 29er World Champions Belen Tavella and Franco Greggi

29er World Championship 2011
Mar del Plata, Argentina

The deadlock between the top two was finally broken but not until after the final race was over.
It has been an incredibly close fought battle between Maria Belén Tavella and Franco Greggi and Pepe Bettini and Fernando Gwozdz through out the entire 29er World Championship in Buenos Aires, Argentina. The deadlock between the top two boats, which began on the first day of the Championship, continued all the way until beyond the last race. It was only after the third placed team, Francisco Consentino and Tomás Wagmaister retired from that race after the finish, due to an earlier infringement, that the 2011 World title belonged to Tavella and Greggi.

The final day's conditions were a complete change from what the sailors have experienced during the rest of the competition. Strong winds and big waves were replaced by postponements and light winds. The first race of the day was as tight as the rest of the regatta had been. Bettini and Gwozdz led at the first mark, but Tavella and Greggi had passed them by the second weather mark and went on to cross the finish first with Bettini and Gwozdz second.

In the second race of the day, Juan Krevisky and Billy Lopez Segura leadi from start to finish with Germán Billoch and Pedro Kocourek crossing second. Bettini and Gwozdz crossed third with Tavella and Greggi in eighteenth and having to settle for a discard, so the advantage was back with Bettini and Gwozdz.

The World title had come down to the final race and there was everything still to play for. Krevisky and Lopez Segura again led the race at the first mark followed by Gonzalo Pollitzer and Jose Maria Diez. At the finish Tavella and Greggi crossed the line in fifth and Bettini and Gwozdz in seventh resulting in a tie at the top. The drama unfolded though as Francisco Cosentino and Tomas Wagmaister, who finished third in the final race, retired after finishing for a foul they committed Tavella and Greegi during the race and with that the deadlock was broken.

Belen Tavella and Franco Greggi are 2011 World Champions followed by Pepe Bettini & Fernando Gwozdz with Francisco Cosentino and Tomas Wagmaister in third, a clean sweep for Argenitina.

Silver fleet champions are Spaniards Luis Rodenas Lorda and Juan Miguel Martinez Ruiz Ruiz with Danish girls Lin Christiansen and Stine Quorning in second and Americans Declan Whitmyer and Ian Storck in third.

The top youth team was Gael Jaffrezic and Julien Bloyet of France.

The top female team was Ida Baad Nielsen and Marie Thusgaard Olsen from Denmark, their third top female title for the 29er World Championships.

Full results at www.29erworlds.org

Photos provided by photographer Matias Capizzano, www.capizzano.com.Live

Jerelyn Biehl (As Amended By ISAF)
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