Record breaking Ian Williams (GBR) moves back into World #1 in the Open Rankings after he picked up his fifth ISAF Match Racing World Championship title in Johor Bahru, Malaysia. Meanwhile, Camilla Ulrikkeholm (DEN) retains World #1 in the Women’s Rankings.
Great Britain’s Ian Williams became the most successful match racing helmsman of all time as he sealed his fifth ISAF Match Racing World Championship title at the Monsoon Cup in Johor Bahru, Malaysia.
As well as the overall title, Williams took the Monsoon Cup honours which propelled him back to World #1 in the Open Rankings, leapfrogging rival Taylor Canfield (ISV).
Williams started the final day of the Monsoon Cup by winning a third and decisive match over Wild Card entry Eric Monnin (SUI). A ticket to the Finals was sufficient to give Williams his fifth world title. Aged 37, Williams won his first World Championship in 2007, and added three more titles in 2008, 2011 and 2012, when he drew level with Australian sailor Peter Gilmour with four titles.
Mathieu Richard (FRA) was no match for Williams in the Monsoon Cup Final, losing out 3-0. Nonetheless he holds on to World #3.
Singapore’s Maximillian Soh competed at the Monsoon Cup, finishing down in 11th place. Whilst he doesn’t count the Monsoon Cup points to his Open Rankings total he does, however, count maximum points from the Kingdom Match Race Event, an ISAF Grade 2 regatta. Soh came out on top in a strong field in Zallaq, Bahrain and as a result climbs from World #22 to World #17, a personal best.
Olli-Pekka Lumijärvi (FIN) finished runner-up to Soh in Bahrain and remains at World #21.
A second ISAF Grade 2 event, the Warren Jones International Youth Regatta, took place in the current period with New Zealand’s Chris Steele sealing the title. The Kiwi moves up one spot to World #15. Steele’s rise up the rankings has been an impressive one. Entering the rankings at World #570 in January 2012, he has continued to progress upwards and currently sits at his personal best.
Sam Gilmour (AUS) finished as runner-up at the Warren Jones regatta and holds on at World #14. Third placed Henry Kernot (AUS) climbs up nearly 200 places to World #190 from World #378.
Another Australian Gilmour, Lachy, entered the match racing domain for the first time in 2015, competing at three graded regattas. A third at the Schweppes 2015 “Little Wheel” Youth Match Racing Regatta alongside ISAF Grade 2 & 3 appearances sees him enter the rankings for the first time at World #252.
Harry Price (AUS) is one of the other big movers of the month having won the ISAF Grade 3 2015 Youth International Match Racing World Championship in Auckland, New Zealand. He climbs up 46 places to World #42, a personal best.
Matthew Jerwood (AUS) moves to his highest ranking position of World #33 this month following success at the 2015 Australian Match Racing Championship.
Great Britain’s Annabel Vose continues to progress up the Open Rankings with solid performances. Vose won the ISAF Grade 4 RYA Winter Match Racing Series Weekend 1 and followed it up with a second at Weekend 2. She enters the top 100 of the Open Rankings for the first time, occupying World #87. In the Women’s Rankings Vose is at World #14.
Milly Bennett, ranked World #9 in the Women’s Rankings, also marches up the tree in the Open division. Bennett counts points from her seventh at the ISAF Grade 3 Hardy Cup and sits inside the top 100 at World #96.
Hardy Cup winner Jay Griffin (AUS) jumps up 19 spots to World #102.
With further ISAF Grade 3, 4 and 5 match racing events taking place in the Netherlands, Ireland, France, USA and Australia there are plenty of ups and downs prevalent across the Open Rankings.
There were no Women’s Match Racing events during the current ranking period meaning that Camilla Ulrikkeholm (DEN) retains her spot at World #1. 2014 World Champion Anna Kjellberg (SWE) remains at World #2 whilst Stephanie Roble (USA) sits comfortably at World #3.
2015 sees the return of the ISAF Nations Cup and the Women’s International Match Racing Series which will certainly provide some changes to the Women’s Rankings along the way.
Women’s match racing events are scheduled to take place at six ISAF Nations Cup regional finals ahead of the Grand Final from 14-19 July 2015 in Vladivostok, Russia.
The Women’s International Match Racing Series will start off with the ISAF Women’s Match Racing World Championship in Middelfart, Denmark in July with regattas in Lysekil, Sweden, Sheboygan, USA and Busan, South Korea following.
The next stop for women’s match racers is the ISAF Grade 3 Marinassess Women’s Match Racing Regatta 2015, scheduled for 21-22 March 2015.