20 JUL

Silver Medal at WASZP Worlds

20 JUL

What a week. The 2022 Waszp International Games drew to a close on Saturday and I'm pretty stoked to have finished up 2nd overall, just four points behind first placed Kiwi Sam Street.

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The week began with a slalom, a mini one day downwind regatta to get warmed up before championship racing. The racing was pretty hectic and boats were everywhere at extremely close quarters.

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I managed to get to grips with the starting by the last few races, although struggled with the waves downwind which led to some interesting wipe-outs. Check out the slalom video below:

In the end I managed to finish the slalom in 6th, a solid result to bag before the championship racing started the very next day.

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Championship racing kicked off the very next day with some glamorous 8-14 knot conditions. The starts were difficult to get a grip on but by far the most challenging aspect of the day were the waves which built up towards the end of the day. I really struggled to stop my boat from porpoising over them, which usually ended up with a swim!

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By day two I had a much better idea what I was trying to achieve with the starts and found my execution improve considerably. Unfortunately I was still struggling with the waves, which as it turned out would be a theme across the whole week.

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Qualifying for gold fleet in 4th overall, I managed to capitalise on some good starts to move into 2nd heading into the final day of racing.

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The final day was pretty stellar for me, where some consistent races very almost grabbed me the gold medal. Coming down to the final downwind of the final race, I had done all I could to be as close to the front of the fleet as possible and it was all on Sam Street to finish higher than 6th. He did a brilliant job to pull through the fleet all the way and unfortunately my hopes of being champion were dashed when he finished the race just a single place behind me.

In the end I finished 2nd, four points off Sam Street in 1st. Am I happy? Pretty much. Coming into the week I said I would be over the moon with a medal and I'm stoked to have achieved that goal. However I always want to win and being so agonisingly close to the gold was/still is pretty painful.
On a positive spin it's not a bad result for my first Waszp international.

Full results found here: WASZP INTERNATIONAL GAMES 2022 RESULTS

As always a huge thanks to everyone who has helped me along the way, especially SailingFast and Actisense!

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So what next? I'm not entirely sure of my Waszp plan moving forwards but what I do know is if I want to win, I need to learn how to go downwind in some waves. 10+ capsizes over the week is not fast at the front end of the fleet. We shall see what happens next 💪

Cheers,

Sam

2022 SWS SLIM LONG

All photos by James Tomlinson.

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