July 04, 2015
Sun, wind and waves: The first day of the 133rd Kieler Woche (Kiel, Germany) offered everything to make a sailor happy. As a result, “the first day in the office” for the sailors could be finished quickly. All planned races were done in less than three hours. “That was a good start in all aspects”, said Dirk Ramhorst, the Regatta Chairman for Kieler Woche! “The only problem now is that expectations are high! After this day, it can only get worse!” He would have loved to let the sailors sail even more, but he had to stick to the framework. Ramhorst’s team was most fortunate, after three days of racing, the race directors had most of the races sailed for all fleets. It’s not a trivial task managing the one of the world’s largest sailing events. The week-long event took place from June 20-28 for 1,500+ sailboats and over 5,000 sailors. The 34 J/24s were the largest offshore one-design class at Kieler Woche. Teams were participating from Germany, Monaco, Sweden, The Netherlands, Hungary and Great Britain. Skipper Ian Southworth on IL RICCIO with crew of Andy McLelland, David “Sid” Howlett, Simon Philbrick and Julia Scott managed to show the fleet what it takes to win in very tight J/24 fleets. Posting three wins in 10 races, Southworth’s crew were able to sit out the last race so that the German teams Karsunke and Schonfeldt could duel for the 2 & 3 positions on the podium. After winning two races themselves, Frank Schonfeldt’s HENK (with crew of Finn Moller, Till Krueger and Thorsten Sperl) took the silver with a sixth in the last race to win a tie-breaker on 39 points. Stefan Karsunke’s SULLBERG (with crew of Tim Habekost, Carsten Kerschies, Christian Carstens and Malte Gibbe) lost that tie-breaker to take the bronze. Holding on to fourth place was Peer Kock and fifth was Jan Kahler. Top women’s team in 13th place overall was Stephanie Kopcke’s VEGA RAGAZZA, sailing with her crew consisting of Ann-Katrin Brugge, Silke Basedow, Amelie Panuschka, Nelle-Marie Bock and Insa-Kristin Horsch from Muhlenberger Segel-Club. For more Kiel Week sailing information, visit http://www.kieler-woche.de/english/sailing/.