Belcher and Ryan on their ISAF Sailing World Cup Palma victory

Mat Belcher and Will Ryan - 2013 ISAF Sailing World Cup Palma
© Victor Kovalenko
ISAF Sailing World Cup Palma – Aussie 470 sailors Mat Belcher and Will Ryan discuss their latest win and their progress on the road to Rio 2016.

It is great to be able to share with you all the news of our first European World Cup win together!!

It's that time of year again, summer has gone full circle, and we have been back in Palma Mallorca, Spain to compete in the Princess Sofia Trophy. After some small delays with shipping containers in Hamburg due to snow, we were able to enjoy some good training with fellow Aussies Angus and Tim, and even lucky enough to have a visit from the Easter Bunny!

Mathew first won this even in 2003 with brother Dan, and he and Malcolm also won last year; so there was a bit of extra incentive to try to start things off strongly! A new format was introduced for this event that kept the intensity high throughout the entire week, and while the focus was certainly to develop our teamwork and racing skills together, we cannot be more pleased from a results perspective winning eight of the 13 races to actually enter the medal race on zero points with the new scoring system! Only one of the two scheduled double points medal races were able to be held, but we recorded a fourth place to secure the win.

It has been a great week of close racing in a range of conditions and good fleet quality that has provided many tests for us as a team. It gives us confidence in our stage of development that we have a good base to work from, and helped us to identify key areas going forwards. This regatta not only qualifies Will for the first time as a full member of the Australian Sailing Team; but also extends Mathews impressive regatta winning streak in the 470 to 17 months!

It is just a step in the right direction towards our overall objective, but it has been a positive week and we are now looking forwards to the final World Cup Event in Hyeres which starts in two weeks’ time. For now it is time for some rest, so while Mathew focuses his attention on two big university assessments which are soon due, Will and Victor are relaxing in the hills of Switzerland and France.

Belcher Ryan 2016
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