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5 July 2005, 04:43 pm
Double-Handed Dinghy Boys And Double-Handed Dinghy Girls
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Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship 2005
Busan, Korea

The double-handed dinghy events in the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship have for the past two years been dominated by Australia's star performers. However, they have now moved on to the senior circuit and this year the competition in the 420 looks wide open.
None of the 2004 medallists in either of the double-handed dinghy events will be back at the ISAF Youth Worlds in Busan, Korea when they take place from 14-23 July. Unlike some of the other fleets the competition in the 420 will start with sailors who are yet to fully establish themselves on the senior circuit giving plenty of opportunities for a generation of new sailors to jump into the limelight.

Australia On Top

Nathan OUTTERIDGE (AUS) and Elise RECHICHI (AUS) have dominated the boys' and girls' double-handed dinghy events in recent years. RECHICHI took silver with Rashele MARTIN (AUS) in 2002 and followed it up with gold a year later with the same crew, and then with another gold in the competition in Gdynia, Poland last year, this time with crew Tessa PARKISON (AUS). OUTTERIDGE's record is even more impressive with three straight golds, last year with Iain JENSEN and in the two preceding years with Ayden MENZIES.

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No one has been able to match
the Aussie teams in recent years
© Peter Bentley
This year the Australian team features Steven THOMAS and Tim RECHICHI and Emma FLUKES and Stephanie FLUKES. They will be aiming to continue a long line of Australian success in the events which stretch well beyond OUTTERIDGE and RECHICHI. Since the 2000 ISAF Youth Worlds Australia have medalled in both events every year and you have go back further, to Fukuoka, Japan in 1997, to find a Championship in which they failed to win a medal in either of the double-handed dinghy events. In the seven Champions following Fukuoka the Australians have taken a total of seven gold, two silver and three bronze medals.

The Pretenders

Great Britain have also proved one of the strongest contenders in the double-handed dinghy events in recent years, scoring two medals last year and winning the last non-Australian gold thanks to Pippa WILSON and Jenny MARKS back in 2002. Tom MALINDINE and James CLARK and Hannah MILLS and Peggy WEBSTER go to Busan as ISAF Youth World rookies and will be aiming to break the Australian stranglehold on the event.

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No nation has more double-
handed dingy medals than
France, but lately Australia
have kept them in the silver
medal positions
© Peter Bentley
Along with Britain, France has been the strongest challenger to the Australian double-handed crown. No nation has won more medals in the double-handed dinghy events than the 19 won by the six times winners of the Nations Cup, France, nor has anybody won more than the nine gold medals the French currently hold. However both these records now look to be seriously under threat from the Australians, who have forced the French sailors into the near miss bracket in the last couple of years. Whilst Australia has won four golds in two years, France has won three silvers. In Busan the French will be looking to Antoine GUILLOU and Vincent GUILLARM and Claire BOSSARD and Marie LUMEAU to go one better.

Nobody would love to knock Australia off their perch more than the Kiwi team. Despite their general success at the ISAF Youth Worlds the New Zealand teams in the double-handed dinghy events have usually found it tough going. With the exception of their Nations Cup winning year of 2002, New Zealand have failed to achieve medals in the last five Championships. This year Olivia POWRIE has moved from the 420 to the Laser Radial leaving the way clear for Georgina HILL and Michelle KENNEDY to make their debut at the ISAF Youth Worlds along with Peter BURLING and Bruce KENNEDY.

The Benefit of Experience

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Ricky and Brennan ROBINSON
will be aiming to put their
experience of last year's
Championship to good effect
© Peter Bentley
With new teams coming from some of the most successful nations, sailors arriving in Busan with the benefit of ISAF Youth Worlds' experience could well come to the fore. Israel's Amit BROKMAN and Ben ESHEL finished eighth in Gdynia last year and will start the competition in Korea knowing what racing at the Championship is all about. Ricky ROBERTSON and Brennan ROBINSON (RSA) will be the only African representatives in the double-handed dinghy events, and will be returning to their second Championship.

In the girls event Marie LUMEAU and Claire BOSSARD (FRA) will be on the start line on Suyong Bay looking to improve on their ninth place in Gdynia. Spain's Tara PACHECO VAN RIJNSOAVE will also be at her second ISAF Youth Worlds, this time with new crew Gabriel UTRERA THOMPSON.

Recent Results

The end of June saw thousands of sailors gather in Kiel, Germany for the Kieler Woche. The Indian team of Farokh TARAPORE and Vikas KAPILA took victory in the 420 event. Behind this pair, a host of the ISAF Youth World's competitors were fighting it out for podium places with Germany's new 420 girls team of Jenna WOLF and Teresa HEMMETER winning the battle for second place. They scored a bullet and two seconds to trail TARAPORE and KAPILA by just two points. Two points behind them the British girls team of MILLS and WEBSTER secured third. The British pair had an outstanding start to the week with bullets in both the opening races, but then struggled to recapture that form in the later races. France's 420 girls team of BOSSARD and LUMEAU came in fifth thanks to a bullet in the final race.

The American challenge cannot be ignored either with Adam ROBERTS and Nick MARTIN and Megan MAGILL and Briana PROVANCHA looking to improve upon the USA's recent performances in the double-handed events. They too will be amongst a host of sailors appearing at their first ISAF Youth Worlds in Busan. With the champions of the past moving on, 2005 will see new winners in the two double-handed dinghy events for the first time in three years. With the most successful nations at the ISAF Youth Worlds all sending rookie crews, 2005 looks set to be an interesting year in the double-handed dinghy events.

Tomorrow, 6 July ISAF will bring you a preview of the Multihull open event.

ISAF. Image, The Aussie girls on their way to victory last year:© Peter Bentley
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