Wednesday, March 04, 2009

Sébastien Col holds on to top spot in match race rankings

[Source: ISAF] Sébastien Col and Claire Leroy maintain the French domination at the top in the ISAF World Match Race Rankings released on 4 March 2009. France’s top match racers continue to lead the way in the ISAF World Match Race Rankings, holding both world #1 positions within a total of 10 skippers placed in the top-20 across the Open and Women’s Ranking lists. Sébastien Col (FRA) stays top of the Open Rankings ahead of the 2007 and 2008 ISAF Match Racing World Champion Ian Williams(GBR), and another member of the all-conquering French Racing Team, Mathieu Richard (FRA).

Both Col and Williams were in action at the major event in the latest Ranking period, the ISAF Grade 1 Louis Vuitton Pacific Series held in Auckland at the start of February. Col, Williams and Italy’s world #4 skipper Paolo Cian were amongst the regulars from the World Match Racing Tour who seized the opportunity to line up against some of the sport’s biggest stars in America’s Cup class boats. However it was the big names who dominated proceedings, with Kiwi skipper Dean Barker leading Emirates Team New Zealand to victory in the final over America’s Cup Defender Alinghi, with American Ed Baird at the helm.

Barker climbs over 150 places from #312 in the Rankings to #147, whilst Baird, a three-time winner of the ISAF Match Racing World Championship, is slightly higher at #122. Baird is likely to become a bigger feature on the Ranking list as the year progresses, with the announcement he will lead an Alinghi team on this year’s World Tour circuit.



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