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29 June 2009, 10:22 am
Italians Win X-35 Worlds Whilst Germany Leads In International Classes At Kieler Woche Finale
The X-Yachts crews of Lelagain and König & Xie celebrate
The X-Yachts crews of Lelagain and König & Xie celebrate their World and European title success

Kieler Woche 2009
Kiel, Germany

The 127th year of Kieler Woche came to a close on Sunday with the last races in the 505 competition following on from the finale in the X-Yachts championships a day earlier.
Saturday provided perfect conditions for the final day of the X-35 World Championship and the X-41 European Championship. Never finishing worse than third, German entrant König & Xie sailed straight to her first X-41 European Championship title after nine races. In the 33-boat fleet of the X-35 World Championship, the Italian crew of Alessandro SOLERIO took the title even with a consistent series. SOLERIO's Lelagain crew discarded a 10th place with all of their other finishes in the top five.

Even on the last day of the double Championships the crews in the X-35 class provided a close battle in their two races. But SOLERIO and crew were never really threatened on their way towards the top step of the podium. With a first place in the second to last race everything was decided for the crew from Sanremo. The second-placed Roxanna of Finland eventually finished 10 points adrift of the winners.

With nine boats on the starting line of the X-41 European Championship the fleet was dominated by König & Xie right from the start. With only first, second and just one third place on the scoreboard helmsman Sven Erik HORSCH (GER) from Hamburg was able to sit out the last race to enjoy the sweet taste of victory by driving his boat ino the harbour of Kiel-Strande early. The silver medal went to Norway, and Thomas FOYEN's Lexington. Third on the podium and best German team were the Extasy helmed by Thomas BRUEGGE.

For all the news from the ISAF Sailing World Cup at Kieler Woche held earlier in the week click here.

Germans Win 505 Title

After a strong breeze the SAP 505 European Championship came to a thrilling conclusion with the final two races on Sunday. With comfortable seven points leading margin over their strongest competitors Jan SAUGMANN and Morten RAMSBAEK (DEN), Wolfgang HUNGER and Julien KLEINER (GER) started the day perhaps a bit too relaxed. After a victory for the Danish team in the penultimate race, the 16-time winner of Kieler Woche HUNGER suddenly found his position at the top of the leaderboard under treat and had to change his tactics from defence to attack. But the shift in strategy worked. With a victory in the last race for HUNGER and KLEINER and a fourth place for SAUGMANN and RAMSBAEK, the German team took the title by four points and set a new Kieler Woche record. HUNGER has now won the title in Kiel 17 times making him the most successful Kieler Woche sailor ever.

Third on the podium of the SAP 505 European Championship are the sixteen time Kieler Woche winner Jorgen BOJSEN-MOLLER and Jacob BOJESEN-MOLLER (DEN). On the third day of the SAP 505 European Championship heavy winds and high waves forced the race officer to cancel the races for that day. But most crews agreed that it was wise not to sail. This cancellation was great luck for the cousins Jörgen and Jacob. The Danes attended Jörgen's son's school's graduation event in Denmark and left Kiel for one day but due to the wind they were able still to hunt for the title.

Best German team behind the champions were Jens FINDEL and Johannes TELLEN (GER) ahead of the best women in the fleet of 100 boats Meike SCHOMAEKER who sailed together Holger JESS, formerly crew with HUNGER in the 505 for many years. Former 505 World Champion Ian PINELL and Carl GIBBON (GBR) came in six.

Amongst the other international classes completing their series on the final day of the 127th year Kieler Woche there was more success for the host nation. In the Folkeboat class Christoph NIELSEN (GER) took his third Kieler Woche victory ahead of namesake Heines NIELSEN (DEN). He will now ship his 36 year old boat to San Francisco to be part of the Folkeboat Cup in September.

For the fifth time the best Contender sailor of Kieler Woche since 1995 was Jan Van Der BANK (GER) who was celebrating his comeback in this class after a one year break. "Maybe that is the secret of my success not to sail the Contender too much over the last year. So I was very keen to race in Kiel", VAN DER BANK) explained.

Another successful comeback came from Greg WILCOX (NZL). The former OK Dinghy World Champion from 2002 won in the OK class to take his third Kieler Woche victory.

The young sailors in the 29er class coming to Kiel found challenging conditions with 12 knots on the final day. Top on the podium were Kevin FISCHER and Glenn GOURON (FRA) with Bleddyn MON and Nick REDDING (GBR) taking second place.

Results and more at www.kieler-woche.com.

Hermann Hell (As Amended By ISAF)
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