Ian Williams forced to wait amid congestion in Marseille



Two events
on the same piece of water can lead to problems, not least as the deciding,
fifth race of the French Match Race semi-final kept Britain’s Ian Williams and
the Australian Keith Swinton stooging around for over an hour and half as the
MOD70s started two races off Marseille.

Having taken a 2-0 lead, Williams, the reigning Alpari World Match Race champion, and his Team GAC Pindar then lost the next two. He made no mistakes in the decider and faces William Tiller, who whacked fellow-Kiwi Laury Jury in the other semi, in the final.

Just by making the final, Williams has overtaken the previous overall leader of the eight-regatta 2012 tour, Bjorn Hansen, and made sure he is in with a crack at a fourth title, whatever happens next week at the Argo Bermuda Gold Cup, when they meet in Malaysia for the Monsoon Cup in December.

Meanwhile the big trimarans were charging up and down with Michel Desjoyeaux in Foncia ruling a roost which had been the nursery of Oman Sailing’s French skipper, Sidney Gavignet. Alongside Gavignet, Britain’s Brian Thompson, more of an offshore man who recently helped Loick Peyron set a new record for sailing round the world, was revelling in the development of his inshore racing skills.

Thompson and Gavignet’s end of term report, even though it does not finish until Tuesday in Genoa, will see an alpha in every column from the managers of Oman Sail. The MOD70 team has been making steady improvement, the results have seen them progress from chasing to setting the pace, and the highest profile project in a programme to encourage sailing in Oman has been equally successful on the Extreme Sailing Series.

Within that the sultanate is incorporating sailing in its extensive programme to involve more women in sport. “We are communicating better, we are sailing better, and, most important of all, our confidence level is much higher,” says Thompson.

“We have more of a winning attitude, we are now thinking of ways to attack our rivals and we are sailing beyond our original expectations.”

Thompson hopes to be back for a second tour of Europe next year, though details of that have yet to be announced. As have the stops for the 2014-15 new Volvo round the world race in the new standard 65-foot boats.

The TP52s, who have elected British-based Niklas Zennström of Rán fame as their new president, include two US regattas before returning to the Mediterranean for their 2013 season. They need to attract more boats to boost the usual tally of five and organiser Lars Böcking hopes that sponsor partnerships with individual boats, perhaps eventually for the circuit as a whole, will be the way forward.

One of the major backers, Quantum Sails, is ready to stick with the class. “There is an element of being patient and taking the pain until the world economy bounces back,” says ceo Ed Reynolds.

Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
Caption competition
Caption competition
  • Get to the point
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating

By clicking 'Search' you
are agreeing to our
Terms of Use.

Career Services

Day In a Page

General Election 2015: ‘We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon’, says Ed Balls

'We will not sit down with Nicola Sturgeon'

In an exclusive interview, Ed Balls says he won't negotiate his first Budget with SNP MPs - even if Labour need their votes to secure its passage
VE Day 70th anniversary: How ordinary Britons celebrated the end of war in Europe

How ordinary Britons celebrated VE Day

Our perception of VE Day usually involves crowds of giddy Britons casting off the shackles of war with gay abandon. The truth was more nuanced
They came in with William Caxton's printing press, but typefaces still matter in the digital age

Typefaces still matter in the digital age

A new typeface once took years to create, now thousands are available at the click of a drop-down menu. So why do most of us still rely on the old classics, asks Meg Carter?
Discovery of 'missing link' between the two main life-forms on Earth could explain evolution of animals, say scientists

'Missing link' between Earth's two life-forms found

New microbial species tells us something about our dark past, say scientists
The Pan Am Experience is a 'flight' back to the 1970s that never takes off - at least, not literally

Pan Am Experience: A 'flight' back to the 70s

Tim Walker checks in and checks out a four-hour journey with a difference
Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics - it's everywhere in the animal world

Humans aren't alone in indulging in politics

Voting, mutual back-scratching, coups and charismatic leaders - it's everywhere in the animal world
Crisp sales are in decline - but this tasty trivia might tempt back the turncoats

Crisp sales are in decline

As a nation we're filling up on popcorn and pitta chips and forsaking their potato-based predecessors
Ronald McDonald the muse? Why Banksy, Ron English and Keith Coventry are lovin' Maccy D's

Ronald McDonald the muse

A new wave of artists is taking inspiration from the fast food chain
13 best picnic blankets

13 best picnic blankets

Dine al fresco without the grass stains and damp bottoms with something from our pick of picnic rugs
Barcelona 3 Bayern Munich 0 player ratings: Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?

Barcelona vs Bayern Munich player ratings

Lionel Messi scores twice - but does he score highest in our ratings?
Martin Guptill: Explosive New Zealand batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Explosive batsman who sets the range for Kiwis' big guns

Martin Guptill has smashed early runs for Derbyshire and tells Richard Edwards to expect more from the 'freakish' Brendon McCullum and his buoyant team during their tour of England
General Election 2015: Ed Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

Miliband's unlikely journey from hapless geek to heart-throb

He was meant to be Labour's biggest handicap - but has become almost an asset
General Election 2015: A guide to the smaller parties, from the the National Health Action Party to the Church of the Militant Elvis Party

On the margins

From Militant Elvis to Women's Equality: a guide to the underdogs standing in the election
Amr Darrag: Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister in exile still believes Egypt's military regime can be replaced with 'moderate' Islamic rule

'This is the battle of young Egypt for the future of our country'

Ex-Muslim Brotherhood minister Amr Darrag still believes the opposition can rid Egypt of its military regime and replace it with 'moderate' Islamic rule, he tells Robert Fisk
Why patients must rely less on doctors: Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'

Why patients must rely less on doctors

Improving our own health is the 'blockbuster drug of the century'