Williams clinches Racing Tour title during Monsoon Cup

 

Britain has a new world sailing champion after Ian Williams knocked out his nearest rival, Italy's Francesco Bruni, in a tense quarter final of the Monsoon Cup in Kuala Terengganu.

Quarter final? That is all it took to make sure that Williams, who won the trophy in 2004, had banked enough points from the eight regattas in 2011 for a third World Match Racing Tour (WMRT) title.

He succeeds another British holder, Ben Ainslie, who also secured the prize in Malaya last year, and who is currently training in Fremantle, W. Australia, ahead of the start next week of the World Championships of Sailing.

This year's victory adds to the consecutive wins in 2007 and 2008 and was made only marginally more difficult as he had to break for nearly three hours after going 2-0 up, Bruni conceding penalties in both, in the first to three wins quarter final. The needs of live television broke the momentum and a tiny misjudgement in the delayed third race cost him a clinching point.

Williams, 34 and from Southampton, made no mistake in the fourth, including accepting the radio advice of coach Ian Barker, who won silver for Britain in Sydney, and the onboard advice of American tactician Bill Hardesty, the current world Etchells champion, to ignore the conventional and attack the right hand side of the course for the second round of 1,200 yards.

There was little time to celebrate as Williams' Team GAC Pindar immediately had to concentrate on a semi-final clash with Denmark's Jesper Radich. Williams was leading 2-1 as the evening gloom began to descend. That little matter would be settled Sunday morning.

In the other semi-final, Sweden’s Johnie Berntsson knocked out the veteran Australian Peter Gilmour 3-1.

Victory, also, is expected tonight for the Spanish yacht Telefonica in the first leg of the Volvo round the world race from Alicante to Cape Town.

Skipper Iker Martinez and British-based navigator Andrew Cape have put in an almost faultless performance over the 6,500 miles. Second-placed Camper, also from Spain but with a largely Antipodean crew, pays a near 200-mile deficit price for an early routing decision but suffering even more for a long gamble south along the coast of Africa, the French entry Groupama was slipping up to 1,000 miles behind.

But her skipper Franck Cammas will still notch up 20 points whereas the other three yachts, which have all retired from leg one, will score nothing.

Two, the Chinese entry Sanya with a badly damaged bow, and Abu Dhabi's Azzam, dismasted and not having time fully to test its replacement, are on ships bound for Cape Town.

The American entry Puma, also dismasted, was expected in Tristan de Cunha overnight to await transfer to a ship and the fitting of a new mast and rigging in South Africa. The clock is against them

New Articles
tvDownton Abbey Christmas special
Arts and Entertainment
Wolf (Nathan McMullen), Ian (Dan Starky), The Doctor (Peter Capaldi), Clara (Jenna Coleman), Santa Claus (Nick Frost) in the Doctor Who Christmas Special (BBC/Photographer: David Venni)
tvOur review of the Doctor Who Christmas Special
News
peopleIt seems you can't silence Katie Hopkins, even on Christmas Day...
News
news
PROMOTED VIDEO
Have you tried new the Independent Digital Edition apps?
News
i100
Arts and Entertainment
Left to right: Stanley Tucci, Sophie Grabol and Christopher Eccleston in ‘Fortitude’
tvSo Sky Atlantic arrived in Iceland to film their new and supposedly snow-bound series 'Fortitude'...
Arts and Entertainment
Jenna Coleman as Clara Oswald in the Doctor Who Christmas special
tvForget the rumours that Clara Oswald would be quitting the Tardis
Arts and Entertainment
Japanese artist Megumi Igarashi showing a small mascot shaped like a vagina
art
News
The Queen delivers her Christmas message
newsTwitter reacts to Her Majesty's Christmas Message
Arts and Entertainment
tv
Life and Style
fashion
Caption competition
Caption competition
Latest stories from i100
Daily Quiz
Independent Dating
and  

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

Career Services

Day In a Page

A Christmas without hope: Fears grow in Gaza that the conflict with Israel will soon reignite

Christmas without hope

Gaza fears grow that conflict with Israel will soon reignite
After 150 years, you can finally visit the grisliest museum in the country

The 'Black Museum'

After 150 years, you can finally visit Britain's grisliest museum
No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

No ho-ho-hos with Nick Frost's badass Santa

Doctor Who Christmas Special TV review
Chilly Christmas: Swimmers take festive dip for charity

Chilly Christmas

Swimmers dive into freezing British waters for charity
Veterans' hostel 'overwhelmed by kindness' for festive dinner

Homeless Veterans appeal

In 2010, Sgt Gary Jamieson stepped on an IED in Afghanistan and lost his legs and an arm. He reveals what, and who, helped him to make a remarkable recovery
Isis in Iraq: Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment by militants

'Jilan killed herself in the bathroom. She cut her wrists and hanged herself'

Yazidi girls killing themselves to escape rape and imprisonment
Ed Balls interview: 'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'

Ed Balls interview

'If I think about the deficit when I'm playing the piano, it all goes wrong'
He's behind you, dude!

US stars in UK panto

From David Hasselhoff to Jerry Hall
Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz: What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?

Grace Dent's Christmas Quiz

What are you – a festive curmudgeon or top of the tree?
Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Nasa planning to build cloud cities in airships above Venus

Planet’s surface is inhospitable to humans but 30 miles above it is almost perfect
Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history - clocks, rifles, frogmen’s uniforms and colonial helmets

Clocks, rifles, swords, frogmen’s uniforms

Surrounded by high-rise flats is a little house filled with Lebanon’s history
Return to Gaza: Four months on, the wounds left by Israel's bombardment have not yet healed

Four months after the bombardment, Gaza’s wounds are yet to heal

Kim Sengupta is reunited with a man whose plight mirrors the suffering of the Palestinian people
Gastric surgery: Is it really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Is gastric surgery really the answer to the UK's obesity epidemic?

Critics argue that it’s crazy to operate on healthy people just to stop them eating
Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction Part 2 - now LIVE

Homeless Veterans appeal: Christmas charity auction

Bid on original art, or trips of a lifetime to Africa or the 'Corrie' set, and help Homeless Veterans
Pantomime rings the changes to welcome autistic theatre-goers

Autism-friendly theatre

Pantomime leads the pack in quest to welcome all