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2 February 2009, 11:46 am
Defending Champions Off To Perfect Start On Day One Of 2009 ISAF Team Racing Worlds
Action from the opening day of racing in Perth
Action from the opening day of racing in Perth

ISAF Team Racing World Championship 2009
Perth, Australia

The 2009 ISAF Team Racing World Championship is underway in Perth, Australia, where the champions from the USA began the defence of their title in ominous fashion.
The 2009 ISAF Team Racing World Championship was officially opened by ISAF Treasurer David KELLETT (AUS) at the Opening Ceremony at the South of Perth Yacht Club on Sunday night. Racing on Swan River launched into action today, with 60 races completed featuring all 14 of the competing teams.

Along with the defending champions from the USA and the host nation Australia, teams from Japan, Ireland, Great Britain and New Zealand are all competing in Perth for the 2009 ISAF Team Racing World Championship Trophy.

Perth is world renowned for its excellent sailing conditions - the next ISAF Sailing World Championship will be hosted by the city in 2011 - and today the famed Freemantle doctor did not disappoint with perfect conditions for team racing; winds up to 16 knots and plenty of sunshine.

Team USA 1 from New York Yacht Club, formed of Clay BISCHOFF, Lisa KEITH, Colin MERRICK, Amanda CALLAHAN, Pete LEVESQUE and Liz HALL, who won the last edition of the ISAF Team Racing World Championship held at Gandia, Spain in 2007, showed why they are hot favourites to defend their title with a perfect eight wins from eight races. Amongst their successes were wins against two of the three Australian teams, although they have yet to take on the second US team or another of the pre-championship favourites, GBR 1.

Even before facing the American favourites, there is already plenty of pressure on the GBR 1 team of Matt FINDLAY and Thomas HEBBERT, both from the team that won the silver medal in Spain two years ago, team racing legend Steve TYLECOTE, Toby LEWIS, Joanne BAILEY and Sally WILSON. The Brits surprisingly struggled to get into their top gear, losing out to both of the other British teams, GBR 2 and GBR 3 as well as NZL 3 to end the day on a 67% record with six wins and three losses.

Along with USA 1, the other standout performer on day one was the home team of AUS 2 from the Royal Perth Yacht Club. Captain Luc TASKER and his team mates Brett SHARPE, Blair SPAULDING, Kirsty PACKER, Steven THOMAS and Greta CARROLL won eight of their nine races - only losing out to GBR 1.

Racing resumes tomorrow at 09:00 local time with the last 31 races to complete round robin one and immediately after the start of round robin two.

Wednesday's racing will also feature the final of the Under 21 competition, with teams from Australia, Great Britain and New Zealand competing for the Ciudad de Gandia Trophy. A lay day follows on Thursday, then racing resumes on Friday and continues through to the knockout stages, final and prizegiving on Sunday 8 February.

Full Results - click here

2009 ISAF Team Racing World Championship website

Full details on the 2009 Worlds, past results and more can be found at the ISAF Team Racing World Championship microsite www.sailing.org/teamworlds.
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