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24 October 2007, 01:58 pm
Match Race Rankings - 24 October 2007
New world #1 Mathieu RICHARD in action at the Bermuda Gold Cup
New world #1 Mathieu RICHARD, wearing the red cap, in action at the Bermuda Gold Cup

ISAF World Match Race Rankings

Victory in Bermuda has lifted Mathieu RICHARD up to world #1 spot in the ISAF World Match Race Rankings released on 24 October.
In the Women's Rankings, Claire LEROY (FRA) makes it a French double at the top of the Match Race Rankings.

Open Rankings

After five months at #2 behind Ian WILLIAMS (GBR), Mathieu RICHARD (FRA) claims the world #1 spot for the first time, buoyed by his recent victory in Bermuda at the ISAF Grade WC Gold Cup. WILLIAMS had held the top spot since May 2007, but lost crucial Ranking points with a disappointing 12th place in Bermuda.

RICHARD has been one of the most consistent performers on the match racing circuit over the past few years, holding a top ten Ranking since October 2002. His win in Bermuda was his first ever on the World Tour and, in addition to giving him the world #1 spot, has thrown him right into contention with WILLIAMS at the top of the Tour standings. With just two events remaining, the 31 year old skipper will be aiming to follow in the footsteps of compatriot Claire LEROY (FRA), who holds both the #1 spot in the World Rankings and the World Championship title.

Behind the top two, Paolo CIAN (ITA) stays third ahead of Sebastien COL (FRA), with 2006 European Champion Staffan LINDBERG (FIN) at #5. At #7 and #9 respectively, Damien IEHL (FRA) and Pierre-Antoine MORVAN (FRA) make it a remarkable four French skipper in the top ten. Just behind MORVAN, rising Australian star Torvar MIRSKY climbs up one place to enter the world top ten for the first time.

Denmark's Jesper RADICH is the sole new entry into the top 20 after a fifth place finish at the ISAF Grade 1 Cento Cup in Italy. Winner in Italy, Ben AINSLIE (GBR), is by far the biggest climber near the top of the Rankings, gaining over 100 places to move up from #161 to #47.

Women's Rankings

Claire LEROY's (FRA) run in the world #1 spot continues unabated, although Lotte MELDGAARD PEDERSEN (DEN) has made a considerable dent in her points lead. A dominant victory at the ISAF Grade 1 Ladies Match Cup in Germany helps the Danish skipper reduce the gap to the top spot from 875 points to 257. However LEROY has led the World Rankings for well over two years now and looks unlikely to give up the top spot without a fight. It has been an incredible 12 months for the 27 year old French skipper, whose victories have included the ISAF Women's Match Racing Worlds, the ISAF Nations Cup Grand Final and the Women's European title - a string of performances rewarded with a nomination for the 2007 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Award.

Australia's Katie SPITHILL remains at #3 after her recent victory at the ISAF Grade 1 Rolex Osprey Cup in the USA. The World Championship silver medallist has undoubtedly been one of the stars of the women's match racing circuit this year and will be a force to be reckoned with next year as the ISAF Women's Match Racing Worlds are held in Oceania for the first time.

With the top three unchanged, Christelle PHILIPPE (FRA) is the big mover in this Ranking release, gaining three places up to #4. PHILIPPE finished second at the Ladies Match Cup to equal her career-best Ranking. A little further back, Linda RAHM (SWE) and Liz BAYLIS (USA) are both new into the world top ten at #9 and #10 respectively.

Osprey Cup runner up Giulia CONTI (ITA) is amongst the highest climbers in this Ranking release. The young Italian skipper, currently world #1 in the Women's 470 Rankings, climbs up from #52 to #25.

The next release of the ISAF World Match Race Rankings will be on 5 December.

Open Rankings - www.sailing.org/mrorankings
Women's Rankings - www.sailing.org/mrwrankings
ISAF Events & World Rankings homepage - www.sailing.org/events

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