EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR 2018
Following the success of the inaugural edition in 2017, this year’s European Match Race Tour will feature seven qualifying events all over Europe followed by the 2018 Grand Final in Montenegro’s Tivat. The spectacular format will attract once more Europe’s best match racing teams to a variety of boat types and high-quality sailing events. On the sportive side, last year’s runner-up World #11 Patryk Zbroja from Poland will be challenging the defending champion, French skipper Simon Bertheau.
The European Tour will start on the beautiful waters of Croatia’s Sibenik in February before heading the Adriatic coast south to Tivat in Montenegro. Stop number three in April will be at PWA’s windsurf world cup venue at Podersdorf at Lake Neusiedl in Austria, followed by the Tour’s first visit to Sweden, when Gothenburg will welcome the match race circuit beginning of May. Another stop in Scandinavia at Copenhagen’s KDY will keep the teams busy on the Baltic, followed by Poland’s Swinojusce, where the northern section of the Tour will finish with another remarkable event. Last year’s host of the Grand Final, Ravenna, will provide the last opportunity to qualify for the 2018 Grand Final which will take place in September at Porto Montenegro, Tivat, where the mountains of Montenegro and the scenic landscape will provide a spectacular backdrop for the climax of the European Tour.
There will be no changes to the scoring system of the Tour. Each skippers’ best three results from the qualifying events will count and the top eight skippers in the general ranking will qualify for the Grand Final. There will be double points on offer which guarantees excitement till the end. The skipper with the highest points from the three events plus his Grand Final score will be crowned Tour Champion 2018.
“It is definitely our goal to win the 2018 European Match Race Tour,” explained Patryk Zbroja, “after finishing on second place with victories in Vienna and Szczecin last year, we are ready to go on top this year! The European Tour is a great format with exciting match racing events across Europe. Many great match race teams are on the road and we love to meet them and to win many events against them! ”
The European Match Race Tour 2018
Tour Stop 1 – 16-18 Feb 2018 – Sibenik, CRO
Tour Stop 2 – 16 – 18 March 2018 – Tivat, MNE
Tour Stop 3 – 6-8 April 2018 – Podersdorf, AUT
Tour Stop 4 – 5-6 May 2018 – Gothenburg, SWE
Tour Stop 5 – 26-27 May 2018 – Copenhagen, DEN
Tour Stop 6 – 22-24 June 2018 – Swinojusce, POL
Tour Stop 7 – 31 Aug-2 Sept 2018 – Ravenna, ITA
Grand Final 2018 – 13-16 Sept 2018, Tivat, Porto Montenegro, MNE
Simon Bertheau wins inaugural European Match Race Tour with impressive victory at Ravenna
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR GRAND FINAL 2017 RAVENNA
French skipper Simon Bertheau and his team APCC Team Jeune secured the victory in the first European Match Race Tour with an impressive win over reigning European Champion Maxime Mesnil. Poland’s Patryk Zbroja left Ravenna after a disappointing fifth place with the Silber Medal while Dejan Presen from Slovenia secured Bronze overall, who lost the petit final against local skipper Jacopo Pasini.
It was the perfect setup for the Grand Final – a broad range of wind conditions from light sea breeze to gusty thunderstorms, the natural amphitheatre of Ravenna’s harbour, perfect organization by the host club Circolo Velico Ravennate and the three contenders for the tour title close at the top of the rankings, with Bertheau on the maximum of 150 points after his victories at Sibenik, Tivat and Monaco, then Zbroja, winner at Vienna and Szczecin, just 10 points behind, and trailed by Presen, another 20 points of the lead.
While their focus was on the tour, it was the local favourite, wild card skipper Jacopo Pasini, who decided the round robin in his favour to win the Sabrina Gurioli-Trophy, which should remember this very talented match race girl from Ravenna, who passed away far too early. As Zbroja did not make the cut for the Semi-Finals, the two remaining contenders for the Tour title were the French and the Slovenian skipper. Bertheau was determined on taking both event victory and tour title and he then defeaded the reigning continental champion, compatriot Maxime Mesnil to finish the tour with 4 wins and the maximum of 250 points.
“We are so happy to win the European Match Race tour”, exclaimed the young French skipper, “we were working so hard through the whole year and to have a score card of 3 victories plus the Grand Final, it is just unbelievable! It is just possible because of my fantastic team and thanks to the support from the APCC club and the French Federation!”
Patryk Zbroja said: “We are very proud to take the second place of the Tour back home to Poland. It was a long season with great events and tight matches! Match race at its best!”
The European Match Race Tour, which started 7 months ago in February at Croatia’s Sibenik, had then stops at Montenegro, at Austria’s capital Vienna before heading to the Yachtclub de Monaco. The second part of the tour saw world class match racing at Poland’s Szczecin and at the Royal Danish Yachtclub at Copenhagen ahead of the penultimate stop-over at northern Germany’s Ploen. There are 46 skippers from 20 nations in the final ranking list. The European Match Race Tour 2018 will start end of February at Sibenik on the Dalmatian coast.
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR 2017
FINAL RESULTS (Top 10)
|10||Jelmer van Beek||NED||65|
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR GRAND FINAL 2017 RAVENNA
FINAL RESULTS (top 5)
1 – Simon Bertheau – FRA
2 – Maxime Mesnil – FRA
3 – Jacopo Pasini – ITA
4 – Dejan Presen – SLO
5 – Patryk Zbroja – POL
Consistency is key as Patryk Zbroja closes gap to Simon Bertheau at Copenhagen
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE COPENHAGEN 2017
While local skipper Martin Boidin took the honours at the sixth European Match Race Tour event held in Copenhagen, eyes were on World #11, the Polish skipper Patryk Zbroja who closed the gap to overall leader Simon Bertheau to 10 points. Mads Degnegard defeated compatriot Henrik Christensen to complete the podium.
In a perfectly organized event by the Royal Danish Yachtclub (KDY), local favourite Boidin completed the round robin with a clean sheet, while Zbroja, already winner of two European Tour events in 2017, struggled at the start, but then showed great consistency to finish in second place. Windy conditions on the demanding DS 37 did not favour the lightweight crews of Tour leader Simon Bertheau from France and World #21 Max Trippolt from Austria. This left the podium open for another Danish skipper, Mads Degnegard.
With only one qualifying event left, Tour leader Simon Bertheau is already qualified for the Grand Final, where Patryk Zbroja will start his final attac with only 10 points behind. Also already qualified are Slovenian skipper World #19 Dejan Presen and Austria’s two time Olympian Christian Binder.
Germany’s Ploen will host the last qualifying event of the European Match Racing Tour from 25 to 27 August 2017 where the remaining four spots at the Grand Final will be decided.
|European Match Race Tour|
|STANDINGS after Event 6 of 8
Top 15 places
|1||Simon Bertheau||FRA .||150|
|9||Francois Brenac||FRA .||40|
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR COPENHAGEN 2017
1 – Martin Boidin – DEN
2 – Patryk Zbroja – POL
3 – Mads Degnegard – DEN
4 – Henrik Christensen – DEN
5 – Simon Bertheau – FRA
6 – Max Trippolt – AUT
7 – Jelmer van Beek – NED
8 – Louise Christine Kristensen – DEN
9 – Toby Austin-Fraser – NZL
10 – Felix Jacobsen – DEN
Impressive home victory lifts Patryk Zbroja in top 3 at European Tour
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE SZCZECIN 2017
Polish skipper Patryk Zbroja sealed his second victory at an European Match Race Tour event with a clean sheet over World #7 Oli-Pekka Lumijärvi. Rafal Sawik finished on home waters on the podium while compatriot Szymon Szymik finished on fourth place at the Grade 2 event held at Polands Baltic town of Szczecin.
Outstanding racing conditions welcomed the nine teams for the fifth event of the European Match Race Tour 2017. Organized by the Polish Match Tour, World Sailing added even more expertise by joining the traditional event with an International Umpire’s Seminar.
Zbroja, who already won the Vienna City Match Race in April, showed consistency and perfect team work on the way to his second victory this year. With a clear 3-0 over Finland’s Lumijärvi, Zbroja lifts himself into top contender position for the yellow jersey at Copenhagen, where he will meet the leader of the 2017 Tour, the Frenchman Simon Bertheau.
Bertheau is still on top of the leader board with a maximum score of 150 points ahead of Slovenia’s Dejan Presen (110 points) and Polish skipper Patryk Zbroja (100 points). The European Match Race tour will now reach its northern summit at Copenhagen in June before heading to Germany’s Ploen in August. The top eight skippers will qualify for the Grand Final which will take place in Ravenna from 8 – 10 September 2017.
Monaco’s golden breeze puts Bertheau back into the lead at European Tour
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE MONACO 2017
Young French skipper Simon Bertheau struck back at Monaco Match Race to regain the lead of the European tour with a flawless victory of the Round Robin, leaving local skipper Francois Brenac on second place. Italian Rocco Attilli, bronze medaillist at the Youth European Championship finished on third place ahead of Austria’s Helmut Czasny.
The first Monaco Match Race, perfectly organized the Yacht Club de Monaco with support of the Monegasque J/70 Association, saw three days of spectacular racing just in front of the world famous landscape of Monte Carlo. Bright sunshine and a light to medium but steady breeze offered the race management team headed by Thierry Leret the opportunity to run matches on all three days.
Simon Bertheau made it clear from the beginning that he is looking for his third win in a row at the European tour and to claim back the lead from Slovenian Dejan Presen. Behind the French team, there were close fights for the podium between the J/70 experts from Yacht Club de Monaco, Francois Brenac, the Italian youth team with skipper Rocco Attilli and the Vienna Match Race Team with skipper Helmut Czasny.
“We are very excited about being on top of the leader board”, explained a super-happy French skipper Simon Bertheau, “it is all about team work and hard training. We had some tough matches but my team is great and we were always in control and managed to leave Monaco unbeaten. We look very much forward to the next events and the Grand Final!”
Bertheau is now back on the leader board with a maximum score of 150 points ahead of Slovenia Dejan Presen (110 points) and Austrian Christian Binder (100 points). The European Match Race tour will now head to Szczecin Match Cup at the end of May before reaching its northern summit at Copenhagen in June. The second last stop will be at Germany’s Ploen in August. The top eight skippers will qualify for the Grand Final which will take place in Ravenna from 8 – 10 September 2017.
Polish victory in Vienna lifts Presen into first position at European Tour
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE VIENNA 2017
After two days of spectacular racing in front of Vienna’s skyline, Polish skipper Patryk Zbroja secured his first victory this year when no wind denied the final battle between him and Austrian Christian Binder. Dejan Presen finished third and took over the yellow jersey of the European Match Race Tour 2017.
The Vienna City Match Race, the third stop of the European Match Race Tour, took place at the Old Danube just some minutes away from the city centre of Austria’s capital. Bright sunshine, summerlike temperatures in the mid-20’s and winds up to 22 knots provided a spectacular stage for Europe’s top match racers. It was only on the final day when the reigning Soling European champion Christian Binder was denied his final attack on the leading Polish team with skipper Patryk Zbroja due to lack of wind.
Dejan Presen from Slovenia used the absence of the double stage winner Simon Bertheau from France to climb on top of the European Tour rankings while Australian Adam Smith finished fourth just ahead of home team skipper Helmut Czasny. Bertheau however will have the chance to fight back next weekend in Monaco, when the European Match Race Tour will stop there for stage 4.
Bertheau keeps the Yellow Jersey of the European Match Race Tour
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR PORTO MONTENEGRO 2017
French Skipper Simon Bertheau won the second event of the European Tour in a dramatic final with 3-1 points over Russian Vladimir Liparvski who claimed on the second place in the overall rankings. With a clear 2-0 over double Olympian Christian Binder from Austria took World # 20 Dejan Presen the bronze medal back to Slovenia.
The second Tour stop at Porto Montenegro, Tivat, featured champagne sailing conditions for the nine teams from six nations. Bertheau, who came as leader of the Tour to Montenegro, finished the Round Robin only in third place with Dejan Presen in the lead and the Austrian Binder second, all on equal points. Vladimir Liparsky just secured the last spot in the Semi-Finals where could win two clear victories over Binder who had a day to forget with losing both Semis and then the petit final. Presen on the other hand started promising into the Semis but the French skipper fought back and went with a 2-1 into the final, where the Russian had no chance against the rookies from France.
Bertheau is now leading the overall standing with a maximum of 100 points, while Liparsky and Presen are tied on the second place with 75 points each and chased by Binder with 60 points. The European Match Race Tour is heading now to Austria, where the Vienna City Match Race will take place from 31 March – 2 April. Here, Presen and Binder may close the gap to the leader who will race again at stage # 4 at Monaco.
French young guns take early lead in the European Match Racing Tour
EUROPEAN MATCH RACE TOUR SIBENIK 2017
French Skipper Simon Bertheau won the opening event of the European Tour ahead of World # 20 Dejan Presen from Slovenia and the Russian Vladimir Liparvski. The multiple Olympian Christian Binder from Austria and the Croatian Pavle Kostov were tied on the forth place.
The Tour event in Sibenik, perfectly organized by the Wave Sailing Centre, challenged the ten teams with various conditions. Was it the famous bura wind with gusts up to 30 knots on the first day, so came light wind tactics into play on day number two. But on the final day, the bay of Sibenik provided a outstanding match racing venue with sunshine and sea breeze the whole day.
Simon Bertheau stunned the other skippers with outstanding performance over the three days. The young French skipper and his crew showed great teamwork and good sailing performance. With just one race lost to the second placed Dejan Presen, it was a well-earned victory. The French took also the lead of the European Match Racing Tour which will continue in one month’s time at Tivat in Montenegro.
“We are so happy to have won and it is great to be the leaders of the European Match Racing tour” exclaimed a super-happy Bertheau after the prize giving.
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