Levent Ahiskali currently enjoys a comfortable lead in the Boys Laser Radial division at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship in Istanbul.
18 year old Levent Ahiskali
started sailing seven years ago and has competed in Optimist and Laser 4.7 classes before stepping up to the Radial rig. He has been racing the Laser for two years but here in Istanbul he is competing in his first ISAF Youth Worlds Championship. He sails in Marmaris on the Mediterranean Sea where there is usually more breeze than in Istanbul but he does not believe he has any local advantage here in Istanbul.
Currently Levent's results stand at 1,2,2 at the halfway point in the championship and he has a 22 point lead over his nearest opponent.
So I ask him how he copes with the long delays waiting ashore for the breeze to fill in? "I stay concentrated, only thinking about the race."
What is his formula for his success so far in this championship? "Mainly boat speed and clever racing"
Levent describes his last race, "The last race on Monday was a bad race for me. I rounded the top mark in 25th place but caught up everybody downwind. "I have good boat speed downwind but also upwind."
He finished this race in second.
So I ask him who his strongest opponent is?
"There are some very good sailors but the Italian Giovanni Coconut is very good."
Giovanni shared the lead with Levant with the same scores, 2,1, on the first day of racing however a disaster in race three left him counting 42 points and he will have to hope that there are at least five races sailed to discard his worst result.
After two years sailing the Laser Radial rig Levent will look to move on to the Standard rig and aims to qualify to represent Turkey at major competitions including maybe even the Olympics.
We all wish him the best of luck.
Race tracking is used for a different fleet each day and can be viewed at: www.onlineracetrack.net
For more details on the 2010 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship visit: www.isafyouthworlds.com
Link to the Volvo Youth Worlds Facebook site: www.facebook.com/pages/Volvo-Youth-Worlds/93806273347
For videos visit the Volvo Youth Worlds YouTube site: www.YouTube.com/VolvoYouthWorlds
Thursday 8 July - Arrival Day
Friday 9 July - Training Day and Opening Ceremony
Saturday 10 July - Practice Day
Sunday 11 July - First Official Race Day (3 raced scheduled)
Monday 12 July - Second Official Race Day (3 races scheduled)
Tuesday 13 July - Lay Day
Wednesday 14 July - Third Official Race Day (3 races scheduled)
Thursday 15 July - Fourth Official Race Day (2 races scheduled)
Friday 16 July - Fifth Official Race Day (1 race scheduled) and Prize Giving and Closing Ceremony
Saturday 17 July - Departure Day