South African Sailing (SAS) are celebrating triple success after three different teams claimed top honours in international championships in the last week.
So dominant was their performance throughout the week that despite being black-flagged in the final race, the brother and sister team of Ryan and Michaela Robinson from Carletonville recorded South Africa’s first ever win at the Mirror World Championships in Tipperary, Ireland.
This was after two South African teams ÔÇô Allan and Daniel Lawrence and Blaine and Peter Dodds ÔÇô had finished second and third respectively at the Hobie Tiger World Championships across in Travemuender, Germany, finishing behind Robbie Lovig and Andy Dinsdale of Australia.
Then, to top it off, there were more medal performances from the SA sailors at the RS Tera World Championships in England. Competing on the same waters as last year’s Olympic Games in Weymouth, Georgou Divaris claimed victory in the RS Tera Sport World Championships in a fleet of 72.
And his teammates, Sam Lombaard and James Hellstrom bagged silver and bronze respectively in the RS Tera Pro fleet.
ÔÇ£I’m so stoked. I almost can’t believe it. I was expecting a top 10 place, but definitely not top three,ÔÇØ said Lombaard afterwards.
ÔÇ£I’ve been in Europe for a month now, first competing in Belgium and then France before coming here and I think that just meant I was in the right mindset coming in. We knew we had good boat speed and so we wanted to show it,ÔÇØ added the 13-year-old from Point Yacht Club in Durban.
ÔÇ£I’m really happy for the whole team. We really outperformed ourselves this year. It’s the first time in three years here that we’ve heard the South African national anthem which was special.
ÔÇ£Next year this event will be held in South Africa ÔÇô in Sedgefield. I won’t be competing but these results here have really inspired the team to want to win again next year.ÔÇØ
Chairman of SAS, Mike Dixon said: ÔÇ£It has been an incredible week for SA Sailing and we are so excited by the results produced by our sailors across the three different events in Europe. We’d like to congratulate every one of them on their fantastic results and wish them all the best going forward from here.
ÔÇ£I think the particularly pleasing thing is that many of these great results have come from sailors in their teens. That just shows us that South African sailing is in good hands and we can look forward to plenty more exciting results in the future.ÔÇØ
Dixon added that SAS had decided at Saturday’s AGM to award the David Butler Trophy, for the most outstanding youth sailors for the year, to Ryan and Micheala Robinson for their exceptional result in Ireland.