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19 February 2007, 10:28 am
Triple F18 World Champion Looking For A Replay
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Seawind Formula 18 World Championship 2007
Yeppoon, Australia

Australian born, Dutch naturalized Mitch BOOTH won the first three Formula 18 World titles. This afternoon BOOTH won the first practice race at the 2007 Seawind F18 Worlds being sailed off Yeppon in Queensland, reminding the fleet that the triple World championship winner was ready and in the mood for a strong showing.
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After taking the first three F18 World titles BOOTH says, 'The other guys started catching up and we recorded a second, fifth and a discard, but we'd love to do a replay from the early year's here in Australia.' Forty-four year old BOOTH, who sailed for Australia in the Olympic Tornado class in the 1992 and 1996 Olympic Games, has been back and forward to Australia a few times this summer.

He skippered a Volvo 60 ocean racer, DHL in his first ever Rolex Sydney to Hobart Race at Christmas. 'First ever Hobart, I know why I've avoided them up to now,' smiles BOOTH.

Ashore after his win today BOOTHwas grinning. 'Australian off the beach conditions - just as I remembered it, choppy, plenty of breeze.'

Last November BOOTH and his Dutch crew Pim NIEUWENHUIS secured an overall victory in the 16th Aruba Heineken Catamaran Regatta.

Crew Comes In For Praise

BOOTH was full of praise for his crew. 'Pim comes from 49ers; he is really good at boat handling, good trimmer and very fast on the bow.

'We are looking forward to a great regatta. As long as I'm behind Bundy [Darren BUNDOCK (AUS)], I know I will get plenty of Australian support.'

Second in the first race was the Australian pairing of Brad COLLET and Lucas MCDONALD. A second Dutch pairing, Mischa HEEMSKERK and Cristopher RASLEY, were third.

Many of the crews missed the second race, busy tuning rigs, hower HEEMSKERK won from the Robert GREENHALGH and Peter GREENHALGH (GBR).

Regatta favourites Australian's BUNDOCK and Glen ASHBY did not race, they relaxed at the Beach Tower and watched the circulating fleet.

The first race in the 2007 Seawind F18 World Championship is scheduled for 10:00 tomorrow morning.

Rob Kothe (As Amended by ISAF), Image, Robbie LOVIG and crew Lachlan GIBSON head out through the break to the start line:© Al Constable
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