Finally the 194 competing sailors at the Aloha and Raceboard World Championships gained just a glimpse of what the Clyde estuary can offer as the elusive combination of sunshine and breeze arrived.
With the pressure to get a start in before the 1530hrs cut-off deadline, a modest afternoon sea-breeze proved just enough to allow the Formula class to establish a World Championship with their crucial third race, while the Aloha and Raceboard titles were decided around full courses.
In the Aloha class the Boys World title was won by Italy's Enrico Collura from Palermo who took third place today, winning the championship from his compatriot Frederico Esposito, the 2001 Mistral Junior World Champion who won the final race.
Buoyed down with an 11th place, gained in the second race yesterday, local medal hope Peter Bird took second place today chasing the leading Italian hard, but he could do no more than second and had to settle for fourth place overall, one better than his finish last year in Rome.
" It's still a very good result and I am happy that I am sailing much better than last year. I made a couple of mistakes which proved killers and I was disappointed then, but I'll go on from here." Said Bird
While the Italians dominated the top places in the Boys' fleet, it was the French girls who stole four of the five top places in the Aloha with La Rochelle's Sophie Anne le Page winning the Girls World title, while Poland's Lukasz Grodzicki won the Minim's (Under 15) title.
Spain's Toni Tores Colomar came good on the final day and won the final race in the Men's Raceboard class to take fifth overall, but third for Gao Chuanwei ensured he lifted the Men's Raceboard World title by just a single point from his compatriot Chen Zhe.
Britain's Hugh Sims Williams won the bronze medal in the Men's Raceboard, losing out by just two points to the China's Zhe. " Obviously my aim was to win, but I'm really happy with third," said Sims-Williams who attributes some of his success to a winter spent training with New Zealand's Olympic medallist Bruce Kendall in Auckland, " I'm happy with my speed and my kit and that I'm as quick as the guys who were ahead of me, but I just made a couple of mistakes."
Aucklander Paul Page,44, was pleased to have made a successful Raceboard Masters title defence over what he considered a testing series. Second place today behind Britain's Tom Naylor - who took third overall - ensured he retained the championship, and happy to have kept the 2000 Masters World title winner Netherlands' Fred Hastman behind him. " I think this is the first time that there have been more than one Masters World title holders or past winners at a Worlds so it's great to win here. Usually title winners give up!" laughed Page.
"It has been a pretty tough week thanks to the general lack of co-operation from the winds, so we were really glad to see a breeze this afternoon, but in general the sailors have been very patient and I think that we have proven that we can run a very good championship here at Largs." Concluded Jo Dixon, Devlelopment Officer at the Scottish Sailing Institute.
1 G Chuanwei (CHN) 9pts,
2 C Zhe (CHN) 10pts,
3 H Sims Williams (GBR)12pts,
4 S Mao Chun (CHN) 18pts,
5 T Tores Colomar (ESP) 23pts.
Masters and Women Masters Raceboard:
1 P Page (NZL) 7pts,
2 F Hastman (NED) 11pts,
3 T Naylor (GBR) 17pts,
4 M Stalman (NED) 17pts (1st woman)
5 P Leone (GBR) 18pts
1 M Kay (GBR) 4pts,
2 A Jackson (GBR) 9pts,
3 T Gibson (GBR) 11pts .
Aloha Class Girls:
1 S le Page (FRA)14pts,
2 M Noesmoen (FRA) 15.4pts,
3 P Le Guiban (FRA) 16pts.
Aloha Class Junior Men:
E Collura (ITA) 7pts,
2 F Esposito (ITA) 11pts,
3 G Bernard (FRA),
4 P Bird (GBR) 23pts.
Aloha Minim (Under 15):
1 L Grodzicki (POL) 8pts,
2 K Festocq (FRA) 10pts,
3 A Jehu (FRA) 14pts,
4 J Dziecielski (POL) 20pts,
5 C du Buyer (FRA) 30pts.
1 Besse (Mistral/Gaastra) 3pts,
2 Van Risselberghe (Bic/Neil Pryde) 6pts,
3 F Renard (Starboard/Neil Pryde)
Formula Espoir (Under 22):
1 Y Fleury (Starboard/Aerotech) 3pts,
2 K Atkinson (Starboard/Neil Pryde) 5pts,
3 N McKean (GBR/Fanatic/Gaastra) 7pts.
1 L Hutter (FRA) 2pts,
2 L Marchand (FRA) 4pts,
3 P Vogel (FRA) 4pts.