Qingdao To Continue As Asian ISAF Sailing World Cup Venue

Qingdao, China has been selected as the Asian venue for the ISAF Sailing World Cup in 2015 and 2016.

Qingdao, venue of the Beijing 2008 Olympic Sailing Competition, will host some of the world’s finest sailors for the third consecutive year from 14-20 September 2015 with the 2016 dates to be confirmed.

Spots for the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final, which will be held in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates from 27 October to 1 November 2015, will be at stake as well as World Cup bragging rights.

All ten Olympic events will race in China’s sailing capital with up to 40 boats within each fleet, ensuring the crème de la crème of the Olympic sailing world will be in attendance.

Head of the ISAF Sailing World Cup, John Craig, said, “Qingdao delivered two exceptional ISAF Sailing World Cup regattas in 2013 and 2014 and we expect more of the same for the next two years. Qingdao’s infrastructure for hosting large scale international regattas makes it the perfect venue for hosting the Asian leg of the 2015 and 2016 ISAF Sailing World Cup series.

“We look forward to continuing working with the Chinese Yachting Association and the Qingdao Yachting Association over the next two years to deliver memorable events for the sailors, local community and an international audience.

The Mayor of Qingdao, Mr. Zhang Xinqi, said, “We are pleased that Qingdao is honoured to be the Asian venue for the ISAF Sailing World Cup in 2015 and 2016. We will provide more professional, more considerate and more meticulous service and deliver two events with high standards, making our due contribution to the development of sailing sport in Asia and in the world.

The announcement of Qingdao completes the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup series venues. Melbourne, Australia will host the opening bout in December 2014 before the show heads to Miami, USA in January 2015. Two European regattas in Hyères, France and Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup

Melbourne – 7-14 December 2014
Miami – 25-31 January 2015
Hyères – 20-26 April 2015
Weymouth and Portland – 8-14 June 2015
Qingdao – 14-20 September 2015
2015 Final Abu Dhabi – 27 October to 1 November 2015

ISAF Sailing World Cup Website

Text: ISAF

2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup (SWC) Qualification System


1. The 2015 SWC will consist of five Rounds for all 10 Olympic Events plus, when possible, Formula Kite racing. The SWC will culminate with a Final to be held in Abu Dhabi.

2. The Round locations, dates and entry quotas for each Event are displayed in the table below.

Event Melbourne,
7-14 Dec 2014
25-31 Jan 2015
20-26 Apr 2015
8-14 June 2015
Sept/Oct 2015
Abu Dhabi,
29 Oct-1 Nov 2015
RS:X Men 80 40 40 40 40 20
RS:X Women 80 40 40 40 40 20
Laser 150 100 40 40 40 20
Laser Radial 120 80 40 40 40 20
Finn 80 50 40 40 40 20
470 Men 120 60 40 40 40 20
470 Women 80 40 40 40 40 20
49er 100 40 25 25 25 20
49er FX 80 40 25 25 25 20
Nacra 17 80 40 40 40 40 20
Formula Kite Open NC TBC (ii) TBC (i) TBC (ii) TBC (i)

NC: No competition          TBC (i): Entry quota is tbc          TBC (ii): Inclusion of Event is tbc

3. Where the quotas (fleet sizes) are limited at a SWC Round, and demand in an Event is expected to exceed the number of places available, the Qualification Process described below, based on qualification through the ISAF World Sailing Rankings (WSR) or through a SWC Qualification Regatta, will be used for that Event. However Miami qualification will follow the process in paragraph 6.

4. Qualification through ISAF World Sailing Rankings (WSR).

4.1 For an Event with a fleet size of 40, the top 30 ISAF WSR ranked sailors in that Event shall be invited to enter a SWC Round based on their ranking on the publish dates in paragraph 4.2. For an Event with a fleet size of 25, the top 15 ISAF WSR ranked sailors will be invited.

4.2 The ISAF WSR on the following publish dates shall determine invitation for entry:
i) SWC Round Hyeres – 2 February 2015
ii) SWC Round Weymouth & Portland – 27 April 2015
iii) SWC Round Asia (Venue TBC) – TBC 2015

4.3 Upon the issuance of the invitation for entry to a Round sailors will be given 72 hours to confirm their attendance. When a sailor declines invitation for entry into a Round, or attendance is not confirmed with 72 hours, the invitation will revert to the SWC Qualification Regatta.

4.4 If a sailor accepts an invitation and then fails to attend, or withdraws within one month of the start of the Round, without written approval from the OA, ISAF may exclude that sailor from his or her next home continent SWC Round or impose any other sanction.

5. Qualification through SWC Qualification Regatta.

5.1 10 places per Event at the SWC Round, plus the number of declined invitations for that Event from section 4, shall be allocated to qualification through the Qualification Regatta.

5.2 Of these places, 4 shall be reserved for sailors from each of the associated home continent(s). However, this 4 shall be reduced to 3 if there are only 5 or 6 home continent sailors competing at the Qualification Regatta, and 2 if there are 4 or fewer.

5.3 Sailors will qualify based on finishing position at the Qualification Regatta. If a sailor who has qualified declines his or her invitation, then the invitation will pass to the highest placed finisher not yet qualified.

5.4 The process and timescales in 4.3 and 4.4 shall apply to these invitations.

5.5 The SWC Qualification Regattas will be:
i) Princess Sophia Regatta (Palma) – 2-9 April (TBC) 2015 for the SWC Hyeres Round.
ii) Delta Lloyd Regatta (Medemblik) – 26-30 May 2015 for the SWC Weymouth & Portland Round.
iii) The Asian qualification regatta will be identified when the Asian SWC Round venue is chosen.

6. Miami Round

6.1 Where the quotas (fleet sizes) are exceeded by the number of applications on midnight (local time), Friday 5 December 2014, the following procedure will apply.

6.2 For each event, the MNAs of the applications received will be sorted in Priority Order, based on the order of each MNA’s highest place in the ISAF World Sailing Rankings as of 5 December 2014.

6.3 Ties in the Priority Order will be resolved in favour of the MNA whose earliest entry application was received first. MNAs not appearing in the applicable ISAF World Sailing Rankings shall be sorted by application date and added at the end of the MNA Priority Order.

6.4 The Applications will be accepted, as follows, until the quota is filled:
(a) One place awarded to the host MNA.
(b) One place, awarded in MNA Priority Order, for each MNA with a remaining entry application.
(c) Repeat 6.4(b) above until the quota is filled.

6.5 The Event Quota will be increased until each MNA with a qualified application has at least one entry in the event. Each MNA with excess application(s) will decide which application(s) fill the available slots.

6.6 For any Event in which paragraph 6.1 does not apply, entries will be accepted in the order received until the Event Quota is reached.2015 Qualification System SWC – Final Page 3 of 3 Last updated 26-Sep-14

7. Qualification for the 2015 SWC Final

7.1 ISAF has 6 continents and 5 SWC Rounds. Each continent has a “home” SWC Round as specified in paragraph 7.3.

7.2 The Event winners from the 2015 SWC Rounds will qualify to the 2015 SWC Final.

7.3 The best placed „home continent‟ sailor in each Event at the 2015 SWC Rounds will qualify to the 2015 SWC Final. The „home continent‟ SWC Rounds are:
(a) North America and South America: SWC Round in North America (Miami, USA)
(b) Asia: SWC Round in Asia (venue TBC)
(c) Africa: SWC Round in Europe (Hyeres, FRA)
(d) Europe: SWC Round in Europe (Weymouth GBR)
(e) Oceania: SWC Round in Oceania (Melbourne, Australia)

7.4 The three podium places from the 2015 Class World Championships (if already held) will qualify to the 2015 SWC Final.

7.5 The 2015 ISAF World Sailing Rankings will be used to qualify the remaining quota places. The date of these rankings will be announced after the Asian venue is chosen.

7.6 The timescale in 4.3, and paragraph 4.4, apply to invitations to the SWC Final.

8. Kiteboarding

8.1 Kiteboarding will certainly take place in 2015 at Melbourne, Weymouth & Portland and Abu Dhabi, and may take place at other SWC Rounds.

8.2 The Kiteboarding sailor rankings will be calculated in 2015 using the same system as ISAF sailor rankings.

8.3 The fleet sizes have yet to be decided, as they will depend on discussions between ISAF, the OA, and IKA. Therefore further details on kiteboarding qualification will follow in due course


Juozas Bernotas (LTU) and Stefania Elfutina (RUS) won the ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne

From 7-14 December 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne brought together the world’s top Olympic and Paralympic class competitors. The regatta was the first stop of the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup series, the seventh edition of the annual series for sailors who are campaigning for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Competitions.

ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne was the first qualification regatta for the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final scheduled for 29 October to 1 November 2015 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Melbourne gold medallists in each Olympic event did qualify for the World Cup Final.

Lithuania’s Juozas Bernotas came out on top in the Men’s RS:X whilst Russia’s Stefania Elfutina was triumphant in the Women’s RS:X. Both sailors claim the first Abu Dhabi ISAF Sailing World Cup Final spots whilst Jock Calvert (AUS) and Joanna Sterling (AUS) picked up the Oceanic spots for the Abu Dhabi.
Stefania Elfutina RUS 02Juozas Bernotas LTU 04

Results RS:X Women
1. Stefania Elfutina (RUS)  18 pts.
2. Joanna Sterling (AUS)   36 pts.
3. Maria Aadland Mollestad (NOR)   38 pts.
Full Results … 

Results RS:X Men
1. Juozas Bernotas (LTU)   21 pts.
2. Dmitrii Polishcuk (RUS)   31 pts.
3. Alexander Askerov (RUS)   44 pts.
Full Results …

How does Sailing World Cup Final Qualification work?

Event winners from each ISAF Sailing World Cup (SWC) Regatta will qualify to the 2015 SWC Final whilst the best placed ‘home continent’ sailor in each round will also qualify. The top three finishers at the 2015 Class World Championships (if already held) will qualify to the 2015 SWC Final. The remaining SWC Final places will be awarded via the ISAF World Sailing Rankings.

Video highlights

Event website

2014 RS:X South American Champions – Ricardo Santos and Patricia Freytas from Brazil

From 3rd to 7th of December the RS:X South American Windsurfing Championships were held in Peru Beach, Buenos Aires, Argentina.
More comments and pictures on the event website - https://www.facebook.com/southamericanrsx2014




The winners are:

1. Ricardo Santos (BRA 1) – 20 pts.
2. Mariano Reuteman (ARG 8) – 23 pts.
3. Juan Manuel Moreno Vega (ESP 8) – 28 pts.

All Results – Men …


1. Patricia Freytas (BRA 8) – 10 pts.
2. Bruna Martinelli (BRA 49) – 19 pts.
3. Maria Celina Tejerina (ARG 363) – 27 pts.

All Results – Women …


1. Lars Van Someren (NED 800) – 11 pts.
2. Breno Franciolli (BRA 70) – 23 pts. – South American Champion
3. Gustavo Manzo (ARG 6) – 26 pts.

All Results – Youth Men …

Event Facebook Website

ISAF Sailing World Cup 2015 – Melbourne Opens The Series

From 7-14 December 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne returns to Sandringham Yacht Club, bringing together the world’s top Olympic and Paralympic class competitors. The regatta is the first stop of the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup series, the seventh edition of the annual series for sailors who are campaigning for the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Sailing Competitions.

ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne is the first qualification regatta for the 2015 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final scheduled for 29 October to 1 November 2015 in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates. Melbourne gold medallists in each Olympic event will qualify for the World Cup Final.

The major regatta of Yachting Victoria was first held in 1994 and is enjoyed by sailors for the great sailing conditions prevalent on Port Philip Bay and the spirit with which the event is conducted.

The Men’s and Women’s RS:X features some good sail board racers. Cyprus’ Andreas Cariolou will be joined by Juozas Bernotas (LTU) in the Men’s division. Both competitors come in well prepared following racing at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final. A string of Russian competitors and Australia’s Jock Calvert will also be in the men’s mix. In the women’s fleet Stefania Elfutina (RUS) and Maria Mollestad (NOR) will be the ones to watch.

Racing is scheduled to commence at 12:00 local time on 8 December 2014.

Event Website: http://sailmelbourne.com.au/website/home.html

Bryony Shaw (GBR) and Louis Giard (FRA) Won The 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Final In Abu Dhabi

Bryony Shaw (GBR) converted her outstanding week of racing into ISAF Sailing World Cup Final gold on the final day of racing in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The British racer has been flawless throughout the series and took a 16 point lead into the Medal Race. The Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medallist put in an assured, astute performance coming through in second to claim the honours.

“I am really pleased that I’ve had such a convincing win here,” said Shaw with a beaming smile. “It’s been a tough year in that I keep missing out on the podiums. I managed to win in Miami back in the beginning of the year. This being the end of the year it’s nice to be back on top of the podium and I hope I can take that momentum into next year.”

Charline Picon (FRA) had an outside chance of taking gold but knew she would have to force Shaw towards the back of the back and take a win. The pair went head to head as Shaw explained, “There was some really shifty and puffy wind on the first beat and I was keeping my eye on the French girl and I matched her every move which was quite fun. The two of us managed to get the best pressure up the first beat and rounded in first and fourth. I was leading the race and then one of the Chinese girls was sailing a good race and overtook me. I then maintained second all the way round and kept the French girl behind me.

“I just went in with a clear strategy and had an eye on my main rival.”

Picon fought hard to catch Shaw but also had to keep an eye on Blanca Manchon (ESP) who was in third and within touching distance. “I had a good battle with Bryony but I had to keep in front of Blanca to keep silver,” said Picon. “I did a good job by doing that at the start and then I attacked Bryony. But she raced well finishing second with me third so she took gold and I took silver.”

The French racer claimed her first world title a few months ago and came into Abu Dhabi with a reduced training schedule. With minimal time on the water she was buoyed by her performance, “Since the Worlds I only had six days of training. Coming here to discover a new country I did some good work at the start but I didn’t race well so silver is okay.”

Manchon completed the podium whilst the Medal Race victory went the way of Manjia Zheng (CHN) who finishes fourth.

1. Bryony Shaw (GBR) – 23 pts.
2. Charline Picon (FRA) – 41 pts.
3. Blanca Manchon (ESP) – 58 pts.
4. Manjia Zheng (CHN) – 62 pts.
5. Hei Man Hayley Victoria Chan (HKG) – 65 pts.
6. Zofia Noceti-Klepacka (POL) – 69 pts.
7. Qiaoshan Weng (CHN) – 80 pts.
8. Flavia Tartaglini (ITA) – 83 pts.
9. Laura Linares (ITA) – 88 pts.
10. Jiahui Wu (CHN) – 89 pts.
Full results …

Louis Giard (FRA) took a single point lead over Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) into the Men’s RS:X Medal Race and did exactly what was needed to claim gold by taking the race victory.

The young Frenchman has excelled in Abu Dhabi and knew he had to beat Kokkalanis across the line to take the honours. He covered Kokkalanis at the start to edge in front and as the race played out he was able to extend. He made it look seamless with a relaxed approach and said, “Maybe that’s the secret. The first day I was like this and it worked very well. Yesterday was difficult for me; I had the yellow jersey so I had some extra pressure on my shoulders. I relaxed today and knew in these conditions I could do something great.

“I am super happy. It’s my first win in the senior fleet so it was a really good day for me. Some of them have some Olympic medals so I tried to have fun and sail well without pressure and enjoy the fact that I am racing in Abu Dhabi. It is a great place and the organisation was perfect. It was a pleasure.”

Kokkalanis came through in third which was enough for silver and he heaped praise on his young competitor after racing, “What can I say? He was really good in this competition. He had one bad day yesterday but today he was really solid. He had a good start and he just had to cover me. That is exactly what he did. He sailed correctly and followed the gusts and he really deserves his gold medal. He was surprisingly good in this competition.

“I feel satisfied to finish the season with one more medal. Having a medal here is really important and I feel happy about it.”

Nick Dempsey sailed astutely to pick up a fifth which gave him bronze.

Top 10 RS:X MEN
1. Louis Giard (FRA) – 28 pts.
2. Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) – 33 pts.
3. Nick Dempsey (GBR) – 46 pts. 
4. Aichen Wang (CHN) – 55 pts.
5. Piotr Muszka (POL) – 57 pts.
6. Pawel Tarnowski (POL) – 58 pts.
7. Julien Bontemps (FRA) – 71 pts.
8. Pierre le Coq (FRA) – 74 pts.
9. Toni Wilhelm (GER) – 75 pts.
10. Przemyslaw Miarczynski (POL) – 94 pts.
Full results …

Live Tracking
The racing will be available to watch in 2D and 3D via the live tracking.
Click here to view live tracking.

Race Highlights
Day 1 – Part 1
Day 1 – Part 2
Medal Race – RS:X Women
Medal Race – RS:X Men (and Finn)

Text & Photos by ISAF/RS:X

Fearless Giard Takes Three In A Row – The Second Day In Abu Dhabi

France’s Louis Giard put in a fearless display in the Men’s RS:X on the second day of racing at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The Frenchman is one of the youngest competitors in the experienced pack of elite athletes and picked up three race victories to take the lead on another glamorous day in Abu Dhabi.

It was perfect for me,” beamed Giard ashore after racing, “I scored three bullets so it was a really good day. I made good choices. Sometimes everything goes perfectly and that was certainly the case today, it was perfect. The conditions were great, sunny, a bit of wind and I’m really enjoying this week. Tomorrow I will try to keep up with the same spirit.

With an abundance of Olympians within the fleet the youngster certainly isn’t daunted when going up against the best of the best. Blasting his way around the race track to take three excellent victories he is showing no sign of lacking big race knowledge, “It’s sometimes a bit inconvenient when you have less experience but sometimes you just have ‘young power’ and you’re fearless.

“You feel like you have more power and it’s just about enjoying it and not allowing any extra pressure.”

The young gun has a nine point lead over ISAF Sailing World Cup Qingdao gold medallist Byron Kokkalanis (GRE). Overnight leader Pawel Tarnowski (POL) was up and down on the race track, taking a 6-11-6 scoreline and drops to third overall.

Top 5 RS:X MEN after the second racing day
1. Louis Giard (FRA) – 7 pts.
2. Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) – 16 pts.
3. Pawel Tarnowski (POL) – 17 pts.
4. Aichen Wang (CHN) – 25 pts.
5. Nick Dempsey (GBR) – 28 pts.
Full results …

It was another great day for Bryony Shaw (GBR) as she added two more race victories to the three she worked hard for on the opening day.

The British racer has been revelling in Abu Dhabi, enjoying the conditions and the culture, and has duly been rewarded by dominating the 18-boat fleet.

Shaw started the day with a 12th place finish, which she discards but she found rhythm in Race 5. Shaw took an early lead and rounded the first mark well ahead of the chasing pack. Hei Man Chen (HKG) looked to catch up with Shaw, progressing up from ninth to second. Unfortunately for the Hong Kong racer it was little too late as she ended up 20 seconds shy of Shaw at the finish.

The Bryony then fended off charges from Charline Picon (FRA) and Flavia Tartaglini (ITA) in the final race of the day but held strong to take her fifth race win of the regatta and with it, a healthy lead.

Shaw tops the pile on five points with Picon trailing on 21 in second. Italy’s Laura Linares is third on 28 points.

Top 5 RS:X WOMEN after the second racing day
1. Bryony Shaw (GBR) – 5 pts.
2. Charline Picon (FRA) – 21 pts. Qiaoshan Weng (CHN) – 5 pts.
3. Laura Linares (ITA) – 28 pts.
4. Blanca Manchon (ESP) – 29 pts.
5. Hei Man Hayley Victoria Chan (HKG) – 31 pts.
Full results …

Racing in the RS:X resumes at 12:00 local time on Saturday 29 November.

Live Tracking
The racing will be available to watch in 2D and 3D via the live tracking.
Click here to view live tracking.

Race Highlights
Day 1 – Part 1
Day 1 – Part 2

Text & Photos by ISAF/RS:X

Dominant Shaw Steals The Women’s RS:X Show at ISAF SWC Final in Abu Dhabi

Great Britain’s Bryony Shaw stole the show in the Women’s RS:X taking three consecutive race victories to hold a steady lead over her rivals at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final in Abu Dhabi, United Arab Emirates.

The British racer, who won bronze at the Beijing 2008 Olympic Sailing Competition, was in exceptional form, mastering the conditions and ruling the waves on one of the outside course areas.

We were out on Course C today so we had quite a bit of swell and waves,” said Shaw. “The wind was between 10 and 13 knots and I was pleased to be sailing fast.

Shaw proved to be a class above the rest as she read the conditions perfectly to lead at the first mark in all of the races as she explained, “I got a good start in the first race but not such a good start in the second race. The wind had just started flicking to the right so I made a gain from going to the right in that race. The first two races I rounded first and was able to extend my lead.

In the last race we had lighter winds. I had a great start by the committee boat and really good height and speed and managed to round first again. It was quite a physical race that one. I kept it quite simple and stayed between my competitors and the mark and managed to win that third race. It was a really good day.

With 270 sailors from 38 nations competing in Abu Dhabi, the British sailor is just one of many competitors who are revelling in the Emirati capital. With a blend of old traditions in a modern metropolis there is plenty for the sailors to learn and enjoy, both on and off the water, “I’ve tried to immerse myself in the culture and we’ve been going out for dinners and the people here seem really friendly,” added Shaw.

The conditions today were fantastic. To be sailing out there in board shorts and for it to be warm, sunny and to be sailing in planing conditions is the best for windsurfing. I’ve had a great time here so far. It’s been a short regatta for them to try and set up but it’s going well.

China’s Qiaoshan Weng is second overall following a third, second and a discarded 14th. Charline Picon (FRA), 2014 Women’s RS:X World Champion, is third overall after an up and down day that included a second, a fourth and a discarded 14th place finish.

Top 5 RS:X WOMEN after the first racing day
1. Bryony Shaw (GBR) – 2 pts.
2. Qiaoshan Weng (CHN) – 5 pts.
3. Charline Picon (FRA) – 6 pts.
4. Blanca Manchon (ESP) – 8 pts.
5. Kamila Smektala (POL) – 10 pts.
Full results …

Youngsters Pawel Tarnowski (POL) and Louis Giard (FRA) are showing their experienced counterparts how to race in Abu Dhabi as they top the bill in the Men’s RS:X fleet.

Tarnowski, 20-years-old, stormed into the lead following an exceptional day on the water. He amassed two race wins and a third and holds a two point advantage over Giard, 21-years-old, who took a pair of seconds and a third.

The youngsters lead their more experienced rivals but only time will tell if they are able to continue it through for a podium finish on Sunday 30 November.

Top 5 RS:X MEN after the first racing day
1. Pawel Tarnowski (POL) – 2 pts.
2. Louis Giard (FRA) – 4 pts.
3. Piotr Muszka (POL) – 6 pts.
4. Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) – 7 pts.
5. Toni Wilhelm (GER) – 8 pts.
Full results …

RS:X racing resumes on 28 November in the Emirati capital from 12:00 local time.

Live Tracking
The racing will be available to watch in 2D and 3D via the live tracking.
Click here to view live tracking.

Race Highlights
Day 1 – Part 1
Day 1 – Part 2

Text & Photos by ISAF/RS:X

Elite RS:X Fleets For ISAF Sailing World Cup Final In Abu Dhabi

Abu Dhabi, UAE will welcome the world’s finest and fastest windsurfers from 26-30 November for the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final with Olympic medallists and world champions aplenty in the 20-boat Men’s and Women’s RS:X fleets.

It’s a who’s who in the Men’s and Women’s RS:X packs with multiple Olympians and medallists who have performed and proven themselves at the highest level of the sport.

14_SWC_AbuDhabi_RSXWMontage_1000France’s Charline Picon has been head and shoulders above her competitors in the Women’s RS:X throughout 2014, winning all the key regattas when the pressure is on.

Picon dominated the fleet at the Europeans, Olympic Test Event and Worlds and will be looking to add ISAF Sailing World Cup Final gold to her 2014 medal haul, “It’s going to be nice to discover a new country and it’s important because it’s the final of the ISAF Sailing World Cup.

“I have won everything this year so I hope to do well in Abu Dhabi. I’m training in Oman before Abu Dhabi because our worlds will be there next year and the conditions are similar so it will be nice for me to get some training in. I hope to do my best in Abu Dhabi and I hope it will be enough to win.”

The calibre of the Women’s RS:X fleet is exceptional. London 2012 Olympic gold medallist Marina Alabau (ESP) will join Picon in the pack as will silver medallist Tuuli Petaja (FIN) and bronze medallist Zofia Klepacka (POL).

Petaja knows how to find an extra gear in competitive fleets and after a disappointing World Championships, by her standards, she is looking forward to lining up against a strong bunch of racers, “The better the fleet is, the more fun it is to beat them,” exclaimed Petaja.

“Since the Santander Worlds I have been training at home in Finland. It’s starting to get a bit cold so I’m really looking forward to some great and warm sailing conditions in Abu Dhabi. It’s an interesting new concept and always a great excitement to see new racing venues. I’m looking forward to enjoying the exciting racing in good company and good conditions.”

Olga Maslivets (RUS) is one of the most experienced racers in the fleet and is a veteran of four Olympic Games. Maslivets spent some time away from the windsurfer after London 2012, focusing on a year in the mixed multihull, but now she’s back on the RS:X full time.

Maslivets finished second at ISAF Sailing World Cup Qingdao four weeks ago to secure her spot in Abu Dhabi and is eager to race against the elite level fleet, “I can’t wait to meet all the good guys. After a long break from RS:X racing I feel hungry to race in strong events.

“I believe that the Sailing World Cup Final is extremely exciting and a pinnacle of Olympic sailing as the level is super high. I wish to be on the podium,” smiled Maslivets, “but honestly, a top ten would be a great result for me this year.”

The Women’s RS:X fleet is full of top performers who will all be aiming to capture the inaugural ISAF Sailing World Cup Final title. Further competitors gunning for gold include 2010 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year Blanca Manchon (ESP), World #1 Flavia Tartaglini (ITA), World #2 and Beijing 2008 bronze medallist Bryony Shaw (GBR) and World #3 Laura Linares (ITA). Five Chinese competitors, all with ISAF event medals to their name, will also be in the mix for the top spots.

The Men’s RS:X fleet features 20 of the world’s best racers who are all capable of taking Abu Dhabi gold.

14_SWC_AbuDhabi_RSXMMontage_1250Byron Kokkalanis (GRE) comes into Abu Dhabi with good form. The Greek sailor started the year by winning gold at ISAF Sailing World Cup Miami in January and followed it up with silver in Mallorca. Top six finishes followed at the RS:X Europeans, Olympic Test Event and Santander 2014 ISAF Worlds before he took the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Qingdao title.

With a solid year under his belt, he’ll be looking to conclude 2014 the way he started it, by winning, “I think it’s going to be a great event. It’s the first time we are going to have a World Cup Final with the top 20 athletes. It’s going to be a really high level with all of the world’s top athletes there. I’m really looking forward to it.

“We’re going to have some fun and it’s going to be a great event.”

2014 Men’s RS:X World Champion Julien Bontemps will spearhead the French charge in Abu Dhabi with strong compatriots Thomas Goyard, Pierre le Coq and Louis Giard qualifying alongside. Bontemps has been a consistent performer over the years, amassing three world championship titles and silver at the Beijing 2008. However in recent times he has been pushed hard by his compatriots ensuring internal and external battles amongst the four French rivals.

Three of the world’s leading competitors Przemyslaw Miarczynski, Piotr Myszka and Pawel Tarnowski all head to Abu Dhabi with their sights on an all Polish podium. The experienced Miarczynski and Myszka combined with the youthful exuberance of 20-year-old Tarnowski make for a strong team all with a podium finish on their minds, “We have just finished our training camp in France and now we are ready to rock’n’roll in the Emirates,” smiled Tarnowski.

“My goal for the competition is to get the podium. It won’t come easy and might not even happen because there are 20 sailors all aiming for the same but I keep thinking positive. They [Miarczynski and Myszka] are very fast guys and we are feeling comfortable together at the top. We train together and I learn a lot from them.

“During the race I treat them as any other sailor, just bearing in mind not to handicap them too much but I hope we can repeat the success from the Eurosaf regatta in Medemblik where we collected all three medals for Poland.”

Tarnowski is a two-time RS:X Youth World champion and training alongside London 2012 Olympic silver medallist Miarczynski and 2010 World Champion Myszka has propelled the youngster forward at a rate of knots. Tarnowski is a rising star in the fleet and the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final will provide him the perfect platform to show what he’s made of, “It’s very exciting to race against the best guys from the RS:X, we’re obviously racing together on other events as well so there’s nothing new about it but the new format of the competition will make the game really tough and even more interesting. There will be no weak guys, just the top 20. There’s no time to make mistakes and no way to regain points.”

The fleet also features London 2012 silver medallist Nick Dempsey (GBR), Beijing 2008 bronze medallist Shahar Zubari (ISR), five time Olympian Max Oberemko (RUS) and fierce competitors Toni Wilhelm (GER) and Aichen Wang (CHN).

RS:X racing commences at 12:00 local time on Thursday 27 November with three races scheduled. The Medal Race on Sunday 30 November will bring the racing to a close.

View the full entry list here. 

Video – Tension Up, Show Us What You’re Made Of At The ISAF Sailing World Cup

Text & photos by ISAF

Abu Dhabi On Stage – Formula 1 and Olympic Sailing

From November 21st  to 30th, the capital of the UAE will host two major events: the Grand Prix “Etihad Airways Abu Dhabi Formula 1” is in program from 21 to 23 November, and the Grand Final of ISAF Sailing World Cup in 2014, with all ten Olympic sailing classes with an open kiteboarding event joining the fray around Lulu Island off the UAE capital’s stunning Corniche, from 27 to 30 November.

Just 20 boats in each event the competition is set to be fierce. The Olympic events will contest an opening series and a Medal Race with the kiteboard fleet using a short track format. Prize money will be awarded to the top three overall finishers in each of the Olympic events from a total prize purse of US$200,000.

The F1 event, hosted for the sixth time in a row at the “Yas Marina Circuit”, this year has many important innovations.

Besides to being the last race of the season will be awarded for this event for the first time in the history of the world of F1, the double points counting towards the drivers’ standings.

Furthermore, the capacity of the futuristic plant has been increased by an additional 5,000 units, for a total of 65,000 places available.

The world in 2014 is, in fact, still in the balance with Lewis Hamilton and Nico Rosberg (the two pilots of the “Silver Arrows” Mercedes) separated by only 17 points to the advantage of the first and is extremely likely to be just the latest of curves “Yas Marina Circuit “to decree the winner.


The full program of events out of the race track and sailing, including concerts of world music at the magnificent “Du Arena” near the “Ferrari World”, Abu Dhabi will showcase the glamor of the moment making this the end of November ‘social and sports highlight of the year.

Event website: http://adsyc.ae/swcfinal/en/index.php

Treiler: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RN7IoyK5pjo