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9 July 2007, 06:00 pm
Star Reports
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ISAF Sailing World Championships 2007
Cascais, Portugal

Reports from the Star class in Cascais.
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Cascais Photo Galleries

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The Basics

Event: Mens Keelboat
Equipment: Star
Fleet size: 72
Olympic qualification places: 11
Reigning World Champion: Hamish PEPPER and Carl WILLIAMS (NZL)
Reigning Olympic Champion: Torben GRAEL and Marcelo FERREIRA (BRA)

Star Runners and Riders

Top Ten Results

Pos Nation Helm Crew R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Pts
1 BRA Robert SCHEIDT Bruno PRADA 2 4 3 1 1 1 (29) 1 2 15
2 FRA Xavier ROHART Pascal RAMBEAU 3 1 1 2 3 3 (7) 2 4 19
3 GBR Iain PERCY Andrew SIMPSON 1 8 2 5 2 2 4 (8) 1 25
4 NZL Hamish PEPPER Carl WILLIAMS 3 1 7 (19) 7 1 2 5 6 32
5 ITA Diego NEGRI Luigi VIALE 4 2 2 5 (9) 5 5 4 5 32
6 POL Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ Dominik ZYCKI 1 8 1 10 1 4 (19) 16 3 44
7 GER Marc PICKEL Ingo BORKOWSKI 2 7 3 8 11 7 8 6 (BFD) 52
8 SWE Fredrik LOOF Anders EKSTRM 9 9 4 1 2 8 17 (18) 7 57
9 AUS Iain MURRAY Andrew PALFREY 6 17 8 8 4 12 12 3 (23) 70
10 POR Afonso DOMINGOS Bernardo SANTOS 12 3 5 13 7 4 16 (21) 13 73

Full Star Results

Click here to view the nations which have qualified for the 2008 Olympic Sailing Competition

10 July

Star World Championship Decided Without A Medal Race

By Lynn Fitzpatrick

The winds were up and down all week in Cascais, Portugal. Even from one race course to another the velocity varied by 10-20 knots. On the final scheduled day for racing in the Star Class, while wind conditions may have been within ranges for the class to sail, there was no safe way for the competitors to get out to a race course.

The crane operated throughout the day and one by one, boats were hoisted out of the water. First it was the silver fleet boats and gradually the gold fleet boats who didnt think that they had a chance of qualifying their country for the Olympics in 2008 started to haul out. The wind did not abate during the afternoon. The television helicopter was in the air ready to film exciting races in survival conditions while the regatta organizers tried to work through all of the scheduling complications that excessive wind had wrought. Press conferences were called at regular intervals, and competitors and media alike watched the signal flags and awaited news.

Baseball caps, sun glasses, even boat parts flew and skittered across the boat yard. While some sailors packed up boats and others lounged around trying to make the afternoon go faster, a photo of past Star World Champions who were present at the regatta was organized. Present and in the photo were (kneeling left to right) Xavier ROHART (2003,2005), Iain PERCY (2002), Hamish PEPPER (2006), Torben GRAEL (1990), Ross MACDONALD (1994), Vince BRUN (1986), (standing left to right) Carl WILLIAMS (2006), Steve MITCHELL (2002), Pascal RAMBEAU (2003,2005), Marcello FERREIRA (1990,1997), Hal HAENEL (1995), Mark REYNOLDS (1995,2000), Magnus LILJEDAHL (2000), Freddie LOOF (2001,2004) and Anders EKSTROM (2004). Attending the 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships but not present for the photo were Ed ADAMS (1987) and Alexander HAGEN (1982,1997).

Much later in the day, after all sailing except for the medal rounds had been cancelled and it looked as if the wind had abated a bit, the ten medal round contenders were sent out to the race course. While the water looked flatter from the shore, a clear indication of just how windy it was occurred when Marc PICKELs (GER) hat blew off his head even before the German boat left the protection of the breakwater. No one attempted a jibe before the start. Spittle was blowing off the waves and the rooster tails that the Stars were leaving. The Stars went into sequence and all of the boats headed a great distance to starboard and downwind of the committee boat. With mains flogging, they struggled to stay upright and time their approach to the start. The race committee put up the abandonment flag and the competitors continued their slog toward the harbour, because none of them could bear down and the sails were flogging so much that they feared shredding them and breaking their rigs. Happily everybody was able to turn the corner into the basin without their masts toppling.

Brazilians Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA joined the fraternity of famous sailors who have won the prestigious Star World Championship title. The highest ranking International Star Class Yacht Racing Association (ISCYRA) member present, two-time Star World Champion, HAGEN informally welcomed SCHEIDT and PRADA to the 'club' by presenting each with a Gold star on the dock. Following the ISAF Medal Ceremony, the International Star Class Yacht Racing Association (ISCYRA) World Championship Trophy was awarded. Names engraved on the base and the bowl of the trophy date all of the way back to 1923, when the trophy was won by W. INSLEE and R. NELSON of Western Long Island Sound. The Mary Etchells Trophy, the trophy awarded to the winning crew at the Star Worlds, was presented to Bruno Prada of Brazil.

9 July

8 July

News from the Star fleet in Cascais

By Lynn Fitzpatrick

From the time that Irishmen Maxwell TREACY and Anthony SHANKS crossed the line until the last boat was scored in the silver fleets first race of the day, over ten minutes passed.

TREACY and SHANKS led a pack of five boats around the first weather mark as a port tack header hit the rest of the fleet that was nearing the top of the leg. TREACY and SHANKS led around the course and were followed by Argentineans Julio LABANDEIRA and Enrique DELLA TORRE throughout the race. The Ricks, Rick MERRIMAN and Rick PETERS (USA) were third in the race. As the wind dropped off during the last two legs, and the fleet got overrun by the top half of the Gold fleet positions behind the leaders got scrambled up a lot.

Bad News

Teams who were scored with an OCS in the silver fleets first race were Croatians Dan LOVROVIC and his father, Marin Sr., Giullio GATTI and Sergio LAMBERTENGHI (ITA) and Lorenz ZIMMERMAN and Michael MARTIN (SUI).

The gold fleet started their first race nearly a leg and a half of the silver fleets first start. Wind conditions throughout the day were up and down. Yesterdays extreme light air did not return to the course, but crews had to pay attention to shifts, micro bursts and puffs that didnt necessarily move down the course as fast as expected. The regatta leaders were fairly evenly spread across the line for the first start. Current within the washer machine made starting conditions difficult. The heartbreaker came for Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ and Dominik ZYCKI (POL) when the pins anchor rode got caught between their skeg and rudder. By the time that they parted company with the pin, they trailed the fleet by 200 yards and about 2 minutes.

Iain MURRAY and Andrew PALFREY (AUS) rounded the weather mark just ahead of Iain PERCY and Andrew SIMPSON (GBR). Croatians, Marin LOVROVIC and Sinisa MILULICIC were in third and Diego NEGRI and Gigi VIALE (ITA) were in fourth. The usual suspects were not far behind.

As the top of the Gold fleet got mixed up with the silver fleet Xavier ROHART and Pascal RAMBEAU (FRA) took the lead. MURRAY and PALFREY hung tough throughout the race and Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA (BRA) moved their way from 12th around the first weather mark to seventh around the second weather mark to a 30-second lead by the time they reached the third weather mark. Their biggest gain came on the second run. Hamish PEPPER and Carl WILLIAMS (NZL) and Mark REYNOLDS and Hal HAENEL (USA) also worked their way up through the fleet.

Bad News

Current played a major factor during the many attempted starts of the gold fleets second race. As you can imagine, the black flag came out and there were two general recalls under the black flag. Boats sent home for the day included: Marc PICKEL and Ingo BORKOWSKI (GER), Torben GRAEL and Marcelo FERREIRA (BRA), John DANE and Austin SPERRY (USA), Flavio MARAZZI and Chrsitoph CHRISTEN, Matthias MILLER and Manuel VOIGT (GER), Robert STANJEK and Markus KOY (GER) and George SZABO and Andrew SCOTT (USA). At one point during the attempted starts, many competitors were so hot and the wind was so light that they took their spray tops off. By the time the actual race was started, they were suited up and ready for heavy air conditions again.

Probably the most aggressive starter on the line, PERCY and SIMPSON rounded the weather mark first followed by ROHART and RAMBEAU, Peter BROMBY and Bill MCNIVEN (BER) and KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI.

PERCY and SIMPSON extended their lead throughout the race and they were so far ahead that the rest of the fleet could use them as a great judge of the conditions up to weather. Their win was as close to a horizon job as there has been in this regatta. SCHEIDT and PRADA had a fantastic final run and passed KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI to take second. ROHART and RAMBEAU finished fourth and NEGRI and VIALE finished fifth.

More Bad News

It just wasnt Dan LOVROIC and Marin LOVROIC Sr.s day. Their top section broke at the bottom of a beat and the two were towed home with the top of the main sail and the top section dangling by the halyard and flailing in the wind. Carl ANDERSON and Ed MOREY (USA) had an unbelievable port-starboard incident at a weather mark. Thankfully there was no damage, because there was plenty of momentum. As they struggled to complete their second circle on the way to the offset mark, their boom hit the shroud of another boat.

Imagine the anguish of doing two sets of circles over such a short distance.

The silver fleet had a long day. Not only did they have to wait around for the Gold fleet to start their second race, the wind went light during their final race. To top it off, they sailed into the harbour a little before 21:00 in 40 knots of breeze! TREACY and SHANKS sailed snake eyes for the day. The Swiss team of Daniel STEGMEIER and Beat STEGMEIER had a finished the day with a 5,2. MERRIMAN and PETERS scored a 3,8. Benny ANDERSEN and Morgens JUST (DEN) rolled a pair of sixes.

Going into the final day of racing two-time Star World Champions and Olympic gold medallist skippers, REYNOLDS and GRAEL sit in 12th and 13th place with 80 and 83 points, respectively. Assuming that there is racing on Monday despite the weather forecast, expect the interesting dynamics to be among the Americans, Irish and Croatians as they vie for the final country qualifying slots.

7 July

Trying Conditions for All Out On The Star Course

By Lynn Fitzpatrick

The loud moan that Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ (POL) let out as he tried to approach the first weather mark from the port tack lay line and watched Iain PERCY (GBR) and a number of other boats coast around it, said it all. There was no need for translation. The winds and the current frustrated the Race Committee and the sailors alike. The fleet followed the Race Committee halfway to Lisbon before the winds turned on enough to start a race. Unfortunately the wind did not settle down for a while. It took an hour of fits and starts and going from being fully hiked to standing up in the boat searching for breeze, before the first race was called for both the gold and the silver Star fleets.

Racing finally looked promising for the US team as Andy HORTON and Brad NICHOL rounded the first weather mark first with Hamish PEPPER and Carl WILLIAMS (NZL) and fellow countrymen John DANE and Austin SPERRY (USA) close on their tail. The regatta leaders, Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA (BRA), PERCY and SIMPSON and KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI were well off the pace. HORTON and NICHOL held a 15-second lead at the second weather mark, but split with PEPPER and WILLIAMS and DANE and SPERRY. PEPPER and WILLIAMS and DANE and SPERRY stayed left in a little more pressure and moved into the lead. DANE and SPERRY and PEPPER and WILLIAMS challenged each other all the way to the finish line while HORTON and NICHOL paid the price and slipped to 15th in the race. DANE and SPERRY gave the USA their first bullet of the regatta. Americans George SZABO and Andrew SCOTT and PERCY and SIMPSON moved up through the fleet to finish third and fourth, respectively.

The silver fleet was in an equally unsettled and undiscriminating breeze. Their course was shifted to the right for the fleets second beat.

Following a general recall, the second start of the gold fleet was held up so that the fleets start would not interfere with the silver fleets run and leeward mark rounding. As the wind died, the natives got restless and started to make a lot of noise. Within minutes, both races were abandoned. So, with many hours on the water, only one race was sailed in the gold fleet.

Irishman, Maxwell TREACY, when asked about the abandonment of the silver fleets race said, 'I was doing well, but that doesnt mean anything.'

American, DANE commented that, 'you hope that you have your horseshoe with you for good luck' out on that course. DANEs win was not solely due to good luck. He used the knowledge that he gained through a general recall and abandoned start down at the pin end. DANE and SPERRY played the current so that they set up high, dipped below the line and executed a perfect pin end start. He said that everyone was changing gears out on the course all of the time and noted that it is much more difficult to change gears in a Star than in many of the other boats out there. With running back stays and check stays and masts that are raked forward several degrees during downwind legs, there are a lot of adjustments to make throughout the race. DANE and SPERRY are happy to have done well in todays exhausting conditions and are trying hard to qualify the USA for the Olympics in Qingdao.

Xavier ROHART and Pascal RAMBEAU The Teams Secret to Success

By Lynn Fitzpatrick

More than half way through the 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships in Cascais, Portugal, Xavier ROHART and Pascal RAMBEAU are one of three teams that have yet to finish out of the top ten. We have had a broad range of conditions, and the two are sitting in second place, one point out of the lead. Major Star regatta after major Star regatta Frances ROHART and RAMBEAU are always contenders. What are their secrets to success?

Click here to read the full story

The Star, Sailing History and Cascais

By Lynn Fitzpatrick

The Star, as one of the oldest one-design classes and as one that thrives and prospers under its Olympic status, has been at the forefront of new ideas since the first 22 boats were built during the winter of 1910-1911 in Port Washington, New York. The design and the sail configuration changed quite a bit during the Stars first decade of existence.

During that first decade, the Stars popularity had grown enough so that the Star Class Yacht Racing Association was formed in 1922 at a meeting at the Hotel Astor in New York City. The first national championship was held 1922 also. The winners, W. L. Insslee and Harry REEVE (USA), hailed from Western Long Island Sound.

The Star and the Olympics

The Star made its Olympic debut in 1932 in Los Angeles. Star sailors stole the show that year in Los Angeles. Three out of the four yachting events were won by Star skippers. Aside from the Star series, Jacques LE BRUN, of France, won the little single-handed one-design (Monotype) crown and Owen CHURCHILL, of the USA, won the Eight Metres at the helm of Babe. In contrast to other yachtsmen at the event, Star members were old friends and spent much of their time ashore together. It was the first time that the rest of the yachting world was able to witness the comradeship already developed within the International Star Class Yacht Racing Association (I.S.C.Y.R.A).

Gilbert GRAY (USA), of New Orleans, sailed the best series of is career and steered Jupiter to a decisive victory. With Andrew LABINO as crew, he won five of the races in the series and was never seriously threatened. While GRAY and LABINO gave the USA its first Olympic Star champions, the US has won the gold medal at the Olympics six other times.

The USAs most recent Olympic victory came in 2000 when Mark REYNOLDS and Magnus LILJEDAHL won.

Star Camaraderie

Appearing 17 times at the Olympics and sailed by many of the most famous names in sailing history, the Star has demonstrated that it presents mental, physical and tactical challenges to the best in the sport throughout the world. This year, 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships in Cascais, there are 19 former and current Star World Champion skippers and crew present. While many of them are competing, some of them are coaching. Since 1992, skippers REYNOLDS and Torben GRAEL (BRA), of the USA and Brazil, have traded the Olympic gold medal. REYNOLDS, the consummate sportsman, and the classs foremost sail maker, is singled out by many skippers and crews as being the individual who has helped them the most with their development in the Star class. The camaraderie in the class that was noteworthy at the Stars Olympic debut remains characteristic of the class. As skippers and crews mature from single-handed dinghies such as the Finn and the Laser and take on the challenge of sailing with a partner and sailing against the best who have graduated from their class and other classes, they move to the Star class.

Many of todays newcomers to the class have competed for years on the international sailing circuit and known their competitors a long time before they sail their first Star regatta. As a matter of fact, national allegiances are often dispensed with and oftentimes crews are not from the same country as their skippers.

The Star and Cascais

Nearly 60 years ago, hosting the 1948 Star World Championships was as important to Cascais as this years ISAF Sailing World Championships. Back then, the predecessor to Clube Naval de Cascais was barely complete. In 2007 we are enjoying the benefit of the newly dedicated yacht club during the World Championships. Back then the winds screeched down from the Sonoras so strongly that four Stars parted their mooring lines and drifted out to sea one night. The Star returned to Cascais for its World Championships in 1952, 1954 and 1962. For the fifth time in Class history, some of the worlds best sailors are demonstrating their sailing prowess, physical and mental stamina, tactical wizardry, joy of competing against and socializing with one another. The Star

Class a galaxy of talent, come join us.

5 July

Consistency Continues To Be The Name of the Game

by Lynn Fitzpatrick

Consistency continues to be the theme in the Star Classss at the ISAF Sailing World Championships 2007 in Cascais, Portugal. Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA (BRA), Ian PERCY and Andrew SIMPSON (GBR), Xavier ROHART and Pascal RAMBEAU (FRA) sailed two first, two second and two third place finishes, respectively today. SCHEIDT and PRADA lead the regatta with eight points following their discard. Two points behind them are the Frenchmen and the Brits follow by another two points.

An outgoing tide flowing against the swell and the wind made for difficult conditions for the start of the first race. With the benefit of a general recall and an abandoned start, PERCY and SIMPSON nailed the start at the boat end of the line and led a small pack, which included Irishmen Maxwell TREACY and Anthony SHANKS, to the right side of the course.

PERCY and SIMPSON led around the top mark with Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ and Dominik ZYCKI (POL) following close behind. Hamish PEPPER and Carl WILLIAMS (NZL) and ROHART and RAMBEAU had slightly better than mid-fleet mark roundings. While PERCY and SIMPSON favoured the right side of the course on the beat and the left side on the run, ROHART and RAMBEAU and PEPPER and WILLIAMS played the shifts up the middle of the course and scrambled back to third and seventh place finishes, respectively. When asked about his recovery to a third place finish, ROHART sighed and said that, 'There were a lot of very good people in the yellow fleet today.' ROHART sails conservatively and rarely bangs corners, so he was more than satisfied with his finishes.

Why fix something when it is not broken? PERCY and SIMPSON sailed a nearly identical first beat in the second race of the day. KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI rounded within striking distance. The pair of boats extended their leads on ROHART and RAMBEAU and the rest of the fleet. KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI challenged PERCY and SIMPSON throughout the race. On the third weather leg PERCY and SIMPSON, who were to leeward and behind, took advantage of a right hand shift and were able to recapture the lead because KUSZNIEREWICZ and ZYCKI effectively over stood the weather mark. PEPPER and WILLIAMS, Prof OCONNELL and Ben COOKE (IRL), and Iain MURRAY and Andrew PALFREY (AUS) sailed a pair of good races today in the yellow fleet in addition to the English, French and Poles.

SCHEIDT and PRADA were on fire today. The Brazilians led around every mark except for the final weather mark of their second race of the day. As they sailed up the right side of the course Freddie LOOF and Anders EKSTROM (SWE) went on the attack. The Swedes sailed through the Brazilians lee with yet another right hand shift at the top of the beat. SCHEIDT and PRADA took advantage of a little more pressure on the right during the run and a wind shadow that the Danish team of Benny ANDERSEN and Morgens JUST threw on LOOF and EKSTROM, to skate into the lead and finish 20 seconds ahead of the Swedes and Danes.

The current, short chop and breeze fostered a number of collisions during the day. Portuguese sailors, Henrique ANJOS and Afonso MARQUES lost their forestay during a collision and had to retire from the first race and could not sail the second. The team is filing for redress. If redress is awarded then they will move up in the preliminary standings and be eligible to sail in the gold fleet for the remainder of the regatta. At the moment, the Fins, Staffan LINDBERG and Erkki HEINONEN, are straddling the gold and silver fleet line for the rest of the championship.

The biggest surprise for the day came from Marin LOVROVIC Jr. and Mikulicic SINISA of Croatia. Three of the four Croatians in the regatta are related. Marin LOVROVIC Sr. is crewing for Marin LOVROVIC Jr.s younger brother, Dan. Up until about a year ago Jr. sailed with Sr. Jr. and SINISA sailed a 6,2 in the blue fleet and are now in 16th for the regatta. Italians Francesco BRUNI and Gilberto NOBILI and Portuguese Afonso DOMINGOS and Bernardo SANTOS each scored 11 points in todays two races. Tomorrow is a lay day. It is a day for working on the boats, practice for some and golf for others, such as Bermudian Peter BROMBY.

4 July

Star Battle

by Lynn Fitzpatrick

France's Xavier ROHART and Pascal RAMBEAU sailed a stellar 1,2 today during the third and fourth races of the Star fleet. Sunny skies, a four to five foot short swell, chop and a shifty race course didn't stop the pair from continuing to rack up impressive results.

Close on the heels of the 2003 and 2005 Star World Champions are Brazilians Robert SCHEIDT and Bruno PRADA. SCHEIDT and PRADA have not had a finish out of the top three since the 2006 Rolex Miami OCR, over a year and a half ago. At last year's Star Worlds in San Francisco, they finished second and ROHART and RAMBEAU finished third behind New Zealanders Hamish PEPPER and Carl WILLIAMS. While all have devoted a lot of time to practicing in Cascais, none will savour the taste of victory as much as the Brazilians.

Consistency has been the name of the game so far and four other teams, Italians Diego NEGRI and Luigi VIALLE, Brits Ian PERCY and Andrew SIMPSON, Germans Marc PICKEL and Ingo BORKOWSKI and Swedes Freddie LOOF and Anders EKSTROM have managed post single digit scores for all of the races sailed thus far. PERCY and SIMPSON recovered from an individual recall to a fifth place in the shifty conditions and Torben GRAEL's (BRA) muscle memory seems to have been completely restored as he and Marcelo FERREIRA sailed a 6,3 today.

Some of today's more memorable sites out on the water were watching Portugal's Afonso DOMINGOS and Bernardo SANTOS and two-time Star World Champion skipper Alexander HAGEN and crew, Firthjof KLEEN (GER) come off a pin end start, catch the first shift and cross the fleet. The Portuguese fans let out cheers as DOMINGOS and SANTOS rounded the first weather mark in first place. We'll need to come up with a name for a constellation that may never have been seen before a cluster of four gold stars GRAEL and FERREIRA, LOOF and EKSTROM, PEPPER and WILLIAMS and HAGEN and KLEEN all rounded a weather mark in a pack and sailed most of their first race of the day in close formation. Julio LABANDEIRA (ARG), the oldest competitor among all of the classes in Cascais, and crew Enrique DELLA TORRE, finished sixth in their second race of the day.

In the press conference that followed today's sailing, both ROHART and SCHEIDT stressed how important getting a good start is in the Star fleet. The time elapsed from when the first boat rounds a mark until the last boat rounds the mark is often less than a minute and a half. It is very difficult to recover from a bad start and sail through the fleet. PERCY and PEPPER managed to do so today, but some of their rivals were not as successful at clawing their way back to the top of these strong fleets.

Two more races will be sailed before the gold and silver fleets are determined. There are 18 teams with between 50 and 70 points. A total of five races must be sailed before a race can be discarded. Some will be jubilant and others will be crestfallen when they return to the dock at the end of the third day of racing.

About The 2007 ISAF Worlds

Over 1,300 sailors from 76 nations are competing at the 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships, from 28 June-13 July in Cascais, Portugal. 'The Wind Is Calling' is the official motto for the 2007 Worlds. The Championships are the principal qualification regatta for the 2008 Olympic Sailing Competition, with 75% of all national places to be decided.

Watch the Medal Races live on Sail.TV

For all the news on the ISAF Sailing World Championships 2007 CLICK HERE.

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