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24 July 2003, 03:53 pm
Latest Rankings Issued 24 July 2003
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Mark MENDELBLATT (USA)© Oneworld

ISAF World Match Race Rankings

With only a sixteen day gap since the previous issue of the ISAF World Match Race Rankings on 8 July 2003, it is not surprising that changes in positions are few and far between.
Open Rankings

Karol JABLONSKI (POL) continues to top the leaderboard, a position he has held since November 2002. Behind Jablonski, a small upset in the Danish camp as there is a swap in positions, with Jes GRAM-HANSEN overtaking Jesper RADICH, as a result of his bullet at the ISAF Grade 1 Trofeo Challenge Roberto Trombini.

Aside from the ISAF Grade 1 event, only two other sets of results have been brought in since the previous rankings, both from ISAF Grade 3 events, being the Seven Feet Cup in Russia and the St Moritz Match Race in Switzerland.

A totally Russian affair, the Seven Feet Cup was won by Garik STEPANYAN, a result which has seen him move up the rankings a significant 59 places, and make his mark in the world's top 100 at number 83, his highest ever placing.

Meanwhile at the St Moritz Cup, whilst not a high ranking event, it pulled in some well-known sailors from the match racing scene and more recently the America's Cup. With Murray JONES, a kiwi by berth but sailing under Swiss nationality, Thierry PEPONNET (FRA), Jesper BANK (DEN), Luc PILLOT (FRA) and Francesco BRUNI (ITA) amongst the skippers doing battle at the Segel Club in St Moritz.

However, no home turf win for this event, with Mark MENDELBLATT (USA) from the Oneworld syndicate making his way to the final rounds via a repechage, before going onto defeat favourites BANK and JONES.

This result scored a significant hit on his world ranking, with MENDELBLATT making his first entry onto the rankings, straight in at number 277. However, MENDELBLATT is no stranger to top international competition and also holds an ISAF World Ranking of 34 in the Laser class.

Elsewhere, with the usual rotation of events, from year 1 to year 2 and some results dropping out of skippers' ranking calculation altogether, there are some moves but nothing significant.

The same top 20 skippers lead the world rankings, despite a few minor position changes, and looking into the top 40, there is only one new entry with Denmark's Henrik CHRISTENSEN moving to 40 from 41.

Top Ten

Position Skipper Nation Events Previous Points
1 Karol JABLONSKI POL 8 1 11237
2 Jes GRAM-HANSEN DEN 8 3 10725
3 Jesper RADICH DEN 8 2 10625
4 Ed BAIRD USA 8 4 10069
5 James SPITHILL USA 7 5 9837
6 Bjorn HANSEN SWE 8 7 8963
7 Mathieu RICHARD FRA 8 8 8958
8 Magnus HOLMBERG SWE 8 6 8947
9 Staffan LINDBERG FIN 8 9 8902
10 Mikael LINDQVIST SWE 8 10 8852


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Women's Match Race Rankings

With no Women's match racing events since the previous ranking of 8 July, it is not surprising that there is absolutely no change in the world's top 40 with Marie BJÖRLING (SWE) continuing her undisputed run at the top.

Swedish sailors dominate the world's top 20, with 5 skippers, 25 per cent holding places. France is not far behind with 4 skippers in the top 20, followed by Italy and the USA with 3 skippers apiece.

Many of the world's top women's match racing skippers are also contesting the women's keelboat event in the Yngling. Currently taking place in Travemuender, Germany is the Yngling Open World Championship, with many women's crews easily holding their own against their male counterparts. Indeed it is Betsy ALISON (USA), ranked 8 in the world match race rankings, who is now leading the Yngling fleet after 4 races, with crew of Suzy LEECH and Lee LCYDA.

The next event to be included in the world rankings is the ISAF Grade 2 European Women's Match Racing Championship, 21-24 August in Helsinki, Finland.

Top Ten

Position Skipper Nation Events Previous Points
1 Marie BJORLING SWE 8 1 10347
2 Malin MILLBOURN SWE 8 2 9249
3 Nina BRAESTRUP DEN 8 3 8268
4 Marie FAURE FRA 7 4 8132
5 Lotte MELDGAARED PEDERSEN DEN 8 5 8053
6 Liz BAYLIS USA 7 6 7692
7 Giulia CONTI ITA 8 7 7410
8 Betsy ALISON USA 5 8 6929
9 Malin KALLSTROM SWE 6 9 6138
10 Gwen JOULIE FRA 8 10 6119


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The next ISAF World Match Race Rankings will be released on 4 September, after the ISAF World Match Racing Championship, 24-31 August, Riva del Garda, Italy.

Subscribe to receive the ISAF World Match Race Rankings directly by email via ISAF Sailor - www.sailing.org/isafsailor
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