Red Bull 49erFX: Time flies for Womens 49er FX World Champions

Alex Maloney and Molly Meech compete in the Oceanbridge Sail Auckland 2014
Red Bull 49erFX team of Molly Meech and Alex Maloney report on their second tour in Europe

After being home for a month with a few weeks of training in the Auckland winter, we boarded a plane, and are already back in Europe for our second trip for 2014.

Thankfully this time we were able to pass on doing the 3,444km drive north from Barcelona, Spain to Helsinki, Finland, onto our driver, who would deliver our boat to the 49erFX European Championships.

This tour started rather differently to others in that we began by spending a week apart. Going separate ways was rather strange as we are usually always together while we are overseas. It has also felt weird to not head straight into training at a new sailing venue. Molly headed to Holland to catch up with her boyfriend for a week, while Alex flew up north to check out things in Finland.

We reunited on June 27 with lots to catch up on and a boat to find somewhere in Helsinki, which eventuated in a taxi ride to a nearby yacht club where the rig had been left. We have since transferred to the regatta venue, which is near an industrial area in downtown Helsinki.

At the moment, the growing 49er fleet has set up camp in a vast concrete area with few facilities. We are looking forward to the regatta village of tents, hoses, and toilets to appear as the week progresses.

It’s tricky to get used to sailing in a European summer that is a similar temperature to New Zealand winter - we are crossing our fingers for a heat wave to hit Finland.

We have been out training the past few days with a few other girls teams from around the world, it has been so nice to get out sailing again. We were excited to relaunch our boat Wings, and already it has had its ten seconds of Finnish fame, featuring on the local TV news channel after the Soccer World Cup highlights.

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2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup, Hyeres, France
Thom Thow Photography