David Staley, Thursday, 4 June 2015
There was a bumper SKUD 18 fleet in Medemblik this year, with the seasoned campaigners joined by some emerging talent in the class.
17 entries came from 13 nations for the annual Delta Lloyd Regatta sailed from the International Sailing Centre in Medemblik from May 26-30.
The 2012 Paralympic Gold Medallists, Australians Dan Fitzgibbon & Liesl Tesch, won three of the eight races to build a four point lead by the end of the regatta. Second was Team GBR’s Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell.
While these two teams have been scrapping it out at the top of regatta scoreboards for several years, the Dutch team of Rolf Schrama and Sandra Nap have reached the podium in the first year in the SKUD.
Netherlands will need to qualify for the Rio 2016 Paralympics at the 2015 World Championships in Melbourne this November, and the Delta Lloyd Bronze Medallists are still competing with Vera Voorbach and Jan-Rein van Esseveld for national selection.
“We are not yet in Rio”, said Schrama.
“It’s nice that we have achieved this level. I would like to go once more to the Paralympics, and after Rio goes the sailing program. So it has to happen now”, he said.
Sandra Nap commented “This result indicates that we found a connection. We are together only for a year in this class and have much to learn. This is a great motivation to train even harder”.
For more information, photos & videos, visit www.deltalloydregatta.org
The next SKUD 18 event is the ISAF Sailing World Cup Weymouth & Portland from 8-14 June