After flying home from Palma, going straight up to one of the Noble Marine Qualifiers in sunny Pwllheli (where I finished 2nd overall) and then coming home for a quick 12 hour pitstop it was time for me to head off back to Europe once again; this time for my first ever sailing world cup, held in Hyeres from the 24th-30th April. Read about my journey from leaving Palma below:

 A lovely sunrise greeted me in Palma as my plane was about to take off.

A lovely sunrise greeted me in Palma as my plane was about to take off.

 I flew home and got straight back into my car, driving up to Pwllheli in North Wales for one of the World and European Noble Marine qualifiers. We had a wide range of conditions from light stuff on Saturday to a bit more breeze on Sunday leading to some very tight and exciting racing. In the end I finished 2nd overall.

I flew home and got straight back into my car, driving up to Pwllheli in North Wales for one of the World and European Noble Marine qualifiers. We had a wide range of conditions from light stuff on Saturday to a bit more breeze on Sunday leading to some very tight and exciting racing. In the end I finished 2nd overall.

 Returning back to Swanage a day of perfect winds tempted my coach and I to head down Weymouth for some WASZP sailing. Unfortunately whilst he suffered minor 'technical' issues I still managed to find someone to race against, Sam Ross on his foil windsurfer! It was fair to say in those light conditions he definitely had the edge!

Returning back to Swanage a day of perfect winds tempted my coach and I to head down Weymouth for some WASZP sailing. Unfortunately whilst he suffered minor 'technical' issues I still managed to find someone to race against, Sam Ross on his foil windsurfer! It was fair to say in those light conditions he definitely had the edge!

 The very next day I was off on my way to the Hyeres world cup, flying from Southampton with a quick stopover at Geneva before my final destination of Nice and a short car journey to Hyeres.

The very next day I was off on my way to the Hyeres world cup, flying from Southampton with a quick stopover at Geneva before my final destination of Nice and a short car journey to Hyeres.

 It was very hot when I arrived in Hyeres and I quickly realised how well run and organised the World Cup program is. It really did seem like the perfect event!

It was very hot when I arrived in Hyeres and I quickly realised how well run and organised the World Cup program is. It really did seem like the perfect event!

 Meanwhile on the accommodation front we managed to bag ourselves an amazing villa in the hills for a ridiculously low price. It was amazing been ale to go for a morning swim everyday ready for sailing!

Meanwhile on the accommodation front we managed to bag ourselves an amazing villa in the hills for a ridiculously low price. It was amazing been ale to go for a morning swim everyday ready for sailing!

 The media coverage out at the World Cup was insane and it was amazing to see all the hard work going into the event. I got more photos taken than ever before!

The media coverage out at the World Cup was insane and it was amazing to see all the hard work going into the event. I got more photos taken than ever before!

 Racing started in some lovely 7-13 knot winds with sizeable sea state. 

Racing started in some lovely 7-13 knot winds with sizeable sea state. 

 After day one I was lying in 8th overall - not bad for my first ever world cup!

After day one I was lying in 8th overall - not bad for my first ever world cup!

 The week progressed with some very light and tricky winds.

The week progressed with some very light and tricky winds.

 I had some great moments...

I had some great moments...

 ... and some big learnings along the way.

... and some big learnings along the way.

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 At the end of the 5 day competition I finished in a respectable 42nd overall and 27th European sailor. Not bad for my first world cup but I knew I had potential to be many, many places higher. 

At the end of the 5 day competition I finished in a respectable 42nd overall and 27th European sailor. Not bad for my first world cup but I knew I had potential to be many, many places higher. 

 Checking out of our accommodation on the final morning before leaving to drive to La Rochelle for Laser Europeans preparation. 

Checking out of our accommodation on the final morning before leaving to drive to La Rochelle for Laser Europeans preparation. 

Overall I had a great time at the Hyeres World Cup and it really did massively help me in my preparation for the Laser Euros. Read about how that went in my next post!

Sam