Hyères Spring Series ahead of a busy season towards the Worlds

The wind and sun were present as usual at the rendez-vous for the first warm-up regatta in Hyères run by the International Yacht Club of Hyères (IYCH). This is the smaller sailing club in Hyères compared to the COYCH which will run the Worlds and two other warm-up regattas this autumn.

Out of the 14-strong fleet team Absolut of Igor Ginzburg was on fire winning the first 5 races, but the two former World Champions – Robin Follin (2015) and Gabriel Skoczek (2018), were rusty on Friday before getting back into action on Saturday and closing the gap with Absolut.

Mad Sail Team of Vasily Grigoriev was very fast as well winning one race. In the end, the former World Champions could not close the gap with Absolut who won the event 5 points ahead of Robin and Vasily!

Here’s what Artem Basalkin, tactician of team Absolut shared about the competition for SB20 Class:

“The three days of the regatta all had different weather conditions. Day one – in the fresh wind, in the second – the same direction, but light breeze, in third – changing wind in direction and in strength, which made it really tricky. In these different wind conditions we almost always had high speed. Even with not very good starts we always caught up, competing with the French leaders right up to the finish.

This time we hired a coach – Rob Smith, who helped us a lot in preparing the boat before docking out as well as did a great job on the water. We still have a lot to learn! We didn’t set any goals at the start of this regatta, but after winning all three races on the first day, we realized that we had set the bar very high. Then we had to play hard and keep the lead, watching our closest rivals.

As predicted, the main contender was the two-time world champion in the Class, French sailor Robin Follin, who was missing a crew member on Day 1, which affected their speed. I think this was a big bonus for us! And, perhaps, the result would have been different, if in the first fresh wind the rivals were in full strength”

Thanks Artem and see you at the other Hyères events heading towards the Worlds in October!

Click here for the results (Scroll to the bottom of the page for the overall results)

You can see the full photo album from the regatta HERE

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