MUSTO Skiff World Championships - 2007
Fraglia Vela Malcesine (Lake Garda) 18-23
Following World Sailing ratification in 2006 the
International spread of the MUSTO Skiff Class has progressed
at a rapid rate and the first official World Championships
held at Fraglia Vela Malcesine was always set to be
a fantastic event; but the reality was it was even better
that anyone had anticipated.
The event was run as a single fleet of
86 boats representing 13 nations. Title sponsor Velocitek
also added an extra dimension to the event by loaning
S-10 GPS units to those competitors who didn't already
own one to keep a track of maximum speeds and to run
replays of the days racing.
Here are a few vital statistics of the
- Competitors 86
- Nations represented 13
- Maximum speed recorded during the event 19.8 knots
- Youngest Competitor 16 years
- Oldest Competitor 68
- Furthest Traveled - New Zealand
- On-site event support by Ovington Boats
- Gold, Silver & Bronze Fleets so all have a target
- Youth (<25), Master (>45) and Grand Master (>50)
titles up for grabs
Most competitors turned up early for a
few days training and measurement. Being a official
World Championships conducted under the direction of
an World Sailing International Jury the first task for competitors
was to get their boats measured. This included a weight
check and competitors were most impressed by the very
narrow tolerance on the boats all up weights ensuring
close and fair competition.
Prior to the first race a long distance
practice race was run all the way up to Malcesine, round
a couple of islands and then a long run back to the
After some confusion over the course and
the finish line Kit Stenhouse was recognized as the
winner and won a meal for two ... she took husband Richard.
The wind kicked in from nothing to a 10
to 16 knot Ora breeze as the fleet launched for the
The racing is being held just off the
shore of the club giving spectators a great view of
the racing which is being run as one huge single fleet
creating a real spectacle for both competitors and spectators
The first race got away after a couple
of false starts and the fleet headed off for the left
First to show was FRA337 George Richards
chased hard GBR294 Ian Trotter and the rest of the fleet.
With such a large fleet each rounding
was very busy with Trotter eventually taking the win
followed by first lady Kit Stenhouse who beat husband
and 2006 World Champion Richard Stenhouse.
In the second race Ian Turnbull started
well and was never headed as he took the race win followed
hard by Richard Stenhouse and Ian Renilson.
The wind moderated a little for the third
race and again the left paid upwind and Richard Stenhouse
was first their followed by Trotter and Turnbull. Those
places remained to the finish.
At the end of an epic first day for the
fleet all the competitors were treated to after race
pasta and beer over which to discuss the ups and downs
of the day.
Stenhouse headed the leader board
from Trotter with former contender world championship
Ian Renilson in third. Pablo Arandia (ESP) was laying
4th with Rick Perkins (GBR) 5th and Kit Stenhouse in
With the event is being sponsored by GPS
manufacturer Velocitek they ran Vmax competition during
the week which was being by Ian Renilson with 17.7 knots
after the first two days.
The wind kicked in early and racing was
held in 12 to 16 knots of Ora breeze.
The first race of the day got off on time
and the fleet again headed for the shore with the boats
starting at the pin end (the non favoured end) starting
to pull forwards as they approached the shore.
the first mark Richard Stenhouse and Ian Turnbull lead
the fleet and popped their kites and headed for the
Ian Trotter gybe set and hooked into some
good breeze in the middle and closed the gap on the
Another lap saw Stenhouse maintain his
lead to take his second win.
The second race started with a fair sized
group from the committee boat end heading for the previously
un favoured right side of the beat.
However, this time round the right paid
and Grand Master Tim Chapman was first at the windward
mark and got so excited that he promptly capsized and
let Ian Turnbull through who held out for the win in
The final race of the day was held
in the strongest conditions so far and the leading pack
were swapping places downwind. At one point they got
too close and a collision between Dave Poston and Ian
Turnbull ended both their chances as they capsized leaving
Trotter to take the win.
The third day saw the strongest breeze
so far with the fleet racing in 14-20 knots of Ora breeze
which built up quite a chop in the middle of the lake
with boats enjoying the wave jumping down the run and
the occasional pitch pole as well ...
Richard Stenhouse enjoyed the breeze recording
a 1,3,1 score chased hard by Ian Trotter who scored
The top 5 remain unchanged but with many
new faces at the front of the fleet the top 10 is very
Ian Renilson lead the master (over 45)
competition in 4th, John Evans leads the Grand Master
Competition (over 50) in 22nd and George Richards is
first youth (under 25) in 11th.
Will Crocker leads the Silver fleet and
Danny Clarke leads the bronze fleet.
The event is being sponsored by
GPS manufacturer Velocitek and they are running a Vmax
competition during the week which is currently being
led by Richard Stenhouse with 18.9 knots.
When the sailors awoke on the 4th and
final day of the Velocitek Sponsored MUSTO Skiff World
Championships there was a full strength peler wind blowing
and with a 12 noon start planned the full race programme
looked under threat as the wind would need to switch
to the north Ora breeze and settle before racing.
In classic Garda fashion the peler "switched
off" at noon and a postponement put up ...
As it was the last day of the championships
the time of the last signal was scheduled for 3pm and
as the Ora breeze built it soon became apparent that
the race team were only going to be able to run a single
race giving Ian Trotter no chance of turning over Richard
Stenhouses 3 point overnight lead.
That said the Ora breeze continued to
build to close to 20knots and with the chop left over
from the morning peler the fleet launched into what
was likely to be the most epic conditions of the week.
Once again the fleet started cleanly under
the I flag and the boats that started at the committee
boat and headed for the strongest winds in the middle
of the lake were favoured with Ali Luxford leading the
The day 4 conditions looked set to yield
the best speeds of the week for the Velocitek Vmax competition.
After the first lap Luxford had conceded
the lead to Neil Upton-Brown but up the next beat those
who had selected the left gate mark gained the advantage
and at the final windward mark 4 boats rounded overlapped
and headed off downwind for the final charge.
At the finish Ian Turnbull had taken the
advantage to finish first from Stenhouse who was chased
home hard by Upton-Brown and Rick Perkins.
This final race win gave Turnbull second
overall from Trotter.
The final race was also key in the outcome
of the week long Vmax competition. The conditionals
were not ideal due to the chop but Turnbull had managed
to lock into some good gusts and pull off a 19.8 knot
top speed to win the week prize of a brand new Velocitek
SC-1 GPS unit. The daily prize was won by Leigh Albrect
who achieved 19.0 knots to win an SC-1.
After 4 days of racing in 10 - 20 knot
breezes the class had enjoyed 10 races and all congratulated
Richard Stenhouse as a very worth World Champion.
The competitors would like to thank Fraglia
Vela Malcesine for organising a fantastic event, the
World Sailing International Jury for their efforts in keeping
the racing fair, the trolley team who were able to get
the fleet on & off the water with the minimum of
problems and everyone else who contributed to this fantastic
land mark event.
Finally thanks must go to event sponsor
Velocitek who contributed an extra dimension with the
Vmax competition which was supported with GPS action
replays and great prizes in the form of the SC-1 and
Supporting sponsors of Harken, Selden,
Ovington, Hyde, MUSTO and GreatKit.com are also to be
The next big event for the MUSTO Skiffs
is the UK Nationals in Lyme Regis and then we look forward
to the next World Championship in Lake Silvaplana in
1 Helly Hansen - Richard Stenhouse
2 BovBoats.co.uk - Ian Turnbull
3 Trident - Ian Trotter
4 Sunrise Engineering - Ian Renilson
5 Harken - Rick Perkins
6 Dan Dixon
1 Youth - George Richards
1 Master - Ian Renilson
1 Grand Master - John Evans
1 Silver - Dieter Brunner
2 Silver - Will Crocker
3 Silver - Tony Phillips
1 Bronze - Danny Clarke
2 Bronze - Keith Boarders
3 Bronze - Dominique Walchli
GPS Replays from the event are available
10 - Harken (Rick) and Helly Hansen (Sten) (Java
must be installed)
Replay of Race 7 (avi file - no java required but it's
Photography above Kelly Radko
event photos by Tania Samus - www.photoskiff.com
by Andy W & Kelly Radko