Zhik Moth Worlds - Joshua McKnight claims 2012 title

Joshua McKnight(AUS3776) 2012 Moth World Champion
This year's Zhik Nautica Moth World Championships came down to the wire and were decided in the final race amid fabulous conditions. Joshua McKnight kept his calm, sailed nearly flawlessly and prevailed over fellow countryman Scott Babbage with two bullets in three races. Rob Gough had a very good last day and snatched third place overall from Anthony Kotoun in the last race.

If Scott Babbage capsizes at the first weather mark then words are not enough to describe the tough, demanding but equally spectacular conditions on a race course. The 'Pelèr', the morning northerly breeze on Lake Garda, was blowing furiously from early on and with a violent storm forecast to hit Campione del Garda in the afternoon, the race committee had scheduled a 10am start. That gave the 60-strong Gold fleet of moths the opportunity to sail three exciting races that saw Joshua McKnight prevail, practically from start to finish.

When the race committee fired the gun for the day's first race, the 20-25 knots of Pelèr and one-meter waves were guaranteed to put a big strain on the sailors and their boats. Both Babbage and McKnight had a clean start in the middle of the line and headed to the right-hand side of the course, as close to the eastern shore of Lake Garda as possible. Babbage was in the lead at the first top mark with McKnight hot on his heels. That's when opportunity knocked on McKnight's door. A few hundred meters after the distance marker Babbage capsized and went for a swim. Not only did McKnight assume control of the race, he stretched his lead and won with ease, ahead of Babbage and fellow Australian Rob Gough who would start his best day in the event.

In the second race of the day, conditions weren't as brutal but no less than 20 boats had to either abandon due to gear failure or opt for the safety of the marina. Without any doubt, the man of the race was Bob Gough whose bold tactical call paid a huge dividend and handed him the victory. On the northern race area, the eastern shore of Lake Garda is usually favored. However, Gough saw a big left shift coming, separated from the bulk of the fleet and seemed like the lone ranger, approaching the first weather mark from the left. The move paid off and Gough rounded the first mark in third place, behind Mcknight and Babbage. He stuck to his strategy and overtook the leading pair while Babbage would snatch second place from McKnight right on the finish line.

As the sky cleared and temperatures raised the Pelèr abated in the third race. McKnight and Babbage were still separated by a two-point cushion and all McKnight had to do was to avoid having two boats between him and his sparring partner. Not only did he achieve it, he had a commanding lead from the start, crossing the finish line in front of Babbage. Rob Gough came in third and snatched the final podium place from Anthony Kotoun who struggled in these conditions.

Sunday's races conclude the 2012 Zhik Nautica Moth World Championships that saw record-setting numbers both in terms of participating sailors (125) as well as countries (20). Conditions were on the lighter side in the beginning of the event but then Lake Garda delivered and the Moths brought the 'wow' factor back into sailing. The Moths will now fly again in the 2013 World Championship that will take place in the month of October on Kaneohe Bay, Hawaii.

Australia’s Joshua McKnight took top honors at the Zhik Moth World Championships
Joshua McKnight (AUS):

'I'm pretty relieved because a lot of effort and money has been going into this program. I sailed a little bit more consistently when there was less breeze and Scott was a bit more unfortunate in one race where he got a 16th but that's sailing. It's really unfortunate for him. He probably put more time into this regatta than anybody else. I feel kind of bad taking it away from him but at the same time I'm happy and relieved I did it.

It wasn't all easy today. Scott was ahead in the first mark but I had a two-point lead coming into the day so I knew I had to take a lot less risk than he did in order to win. I tried to sail safely and even if he did beat me in the second race on the finish line, I figured it was just one point. Scott and I train a lot in this type of conditions and he's the one that usually gets away and waits for me. So, for me to win in these conditions is really surprising. '

Scott Babbage (AUS): 'I'm pretty disappointed although I'm happy for Josh because he sailed very well. As I said before, we have been training together all winter and it's good to see that training paid off. The start of the week was good, I had a very good qualifying series but I had a bad day in the final that cost me.'

Rob Goough (AUS): 'The last day of the worlds was fantastic with very good breeze and good waves. I had a good day, I sailed around pretty comfortably and I could watch the battle between Josh and Scott. When I came to the worlds my goal was to make the top three. I was eighth coming this morning, so I'm pretty happy. '

SILVER Fleet Sailed: 6, Discards: 1, To count: 5, Entries: 57, Scoring system: Appendix A
1stSILVERGBR3769Andrew Richard BudgenWAC64.0(43.0)
2ndSILVERAUS3781Will LoganRYCT67.
3rdSILVERIRL3771Michael Joseph O'SheaWSC69.
4thSILVERSUI3884Hochmann MarcSNG68.
5thSILVERGBR3614Doug PybusQueen Mary Sailing Club66.0(46.0)
6thSILVERBEL3915Galeotti GiovanniRYCB65.06.033.0(58.0 DNC)
7thSILVERSUI3831Nicola DecarliYacht Club Ascona81.
8thSILVERFRA3718Rezzoug AnthonyASNQ70.09.09.0(20.0)
9thSILVERSUI3752David HolenwegCVE61.017.05.0(19.0)
10thSILVERGBR3947Leigh AlbrechtQMSC74.0(28.0)
11thSILVERAUS3905Phil StevensonSt George SC71.
12thSILVERAUS3784Simon John LiddingtonWoollahra Sailing Club83.05.0(23.0)
13thSILVERGBR3870Oliver Daniel HoldenHayling Island SC62.08.0(27.0)
14thSILVERESP3606Simon Alexander FisherRYA80.012.014.0(21.0)
15thSILVERFIN3291Janne Mikael Uusi-AuttiTP77.015.011.0(18.0)
16thSILVERIRL3635John ChambersDBSC84.
17thSILVERAUS3938Alan John GoddardBSC72.0(26.0)
18thSILVERGBR3674Neil BakerHayling Island SC79.
19thSILVERGER3732Markus SteegSCR/SCNS63.
20thSILVERGBR3730Jonathan PeatsCastle Cove SC78.
21stSILVERNED3849Constantijn Weberwsv muiderberg73.
22ndSILVERSUI3949Marc Armand BruggerClub Nautique de Founex92.022.0(41.0)
23rdSILVERGBR3766Alex KoukourakisEastbourne Soverign SC87.0(37.0)
24thSILVERGBR3711Dan` WardFrensham Ponds90.014.0(37.0)
25thSILVERFIN2973Sami JokinenHSK76.0(58.0 DNC)
26thSILVERSIN3869James ColeChangi Sailing Club75.
27thSILVEREST3937Sten Mark BachmannRein Ottoson Sailing School91.
28thSILVERSUI3798Philippe Boris Schillersng98.0(36.0)
29thSILVERSWE3793Magnus GrävareGKSS85.010.0(45.0)
30thSILVERGER3843Carlo MägeFeldafinger Segelverein86. DNC)24.023.0262.0204.0
31stSILVERGBR3837Graham Richard SimmondsHayling Island SC100.020.025.0(30.0)
32ndSILVERAUT3888Resch NikolausY.C. Velden88.032.024.0(58.0 DNC)
33rdSILVERBEL3388Good MorganBRYC82. DNC)301.0243.0
34thSILVERAUS3770Emma J SpiersWoollahra Sailing Club93.
35thSILVERGER3399Harald SteinerSVD94.
36thSILVERSUI3387Roberto DazioYCA104.
37thSILVERFRA3935Gavigniaux ClaireASNQ89.035.0(43.0)
38thSILVERAUT3202Doug CulnaneYCW95.
39thSILVERITA3789Andrea Biagionicdv Erix103.
40thSILVERPOL3842Michal Domanski 99.040.0(44.0)
41stSILVERFRA3746Rotteleur EricSPORT NAUTIQUE SABLAIS97.038.0(42.0)
42ndSILVERGBR3192Chris JeevesMAREC113. DNC)359.0301.0
43rdSILVERITA3679Luca RizzottiVela Club Campione105.
44thSILVERGER3788Nina ZühlkeSCNC/SC496.0(47.0)
45thSILVERAUS3867David RobinsonWoollahra Sailing Club102.
46thSILVERNED3100Koos WinnipsWSV Lauwerszee106.045.0(49.0)
47thSILVERGER3259Gerold PaulerSLRV111.0(58.0 DNC)
48thSILVERFRA3122Poizivara FrédéricASNQ108.
49thSILVERDEN3601Hans RasmussenTBL115.044.048.0(58.0 DNC)
50thSILVERFRA3755Le Houerou Damien DamienCN Lorient110.0(58.0 DNF)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC41.045.040.0410.0352.0
51stSILVERGBR3928Rob CageBewl Valley SC112.048.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC50.048.0432.0374.0
52ndSILVERGER3088Schönberg JensSCR114.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC41.050.058.0 DNC58.0 DNC437.0379.0
53rdSILVERSUI3624Zaeh MartinRVS101.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC449.0391.0
54thSILVERSUI3797Patrick RufYCA107.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC455.0397.0
55thSILVERNED3852Arjan De LangeZW Workum109.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC457.0399.0
56thSILVERGER3835Manfred C. SchreiberSSC, Schleswig116.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC464.0406.0
57thSILVERNZL3773Read GlenY.C. Dunedin117.0(58.0 DNC)58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC58.0 DNC465.0407.0
Results as of 18:26 on August 25, 2012GOLD FleetSailed: 6, Discards: 1, To count: 5, Entries: 60, Scoring system: Appendix A
1stGOLDAUS3776Joshua Aaron McKnightRPAYC2.02.0(4.0)
2ndGOLDAUS3Scott BabbageWSC1.
3rdGOLDISV3596Anthony KotounVISA4.
4thGOLDUSA5Bora GulariBay View Yacht Club3.05.0(11.0)
5thGOLDAUS3631Julian Salterroyal yacht club of tasmania8.
6thGOLDUSA3931Brad FunkLauderdale Yacht Club18.06.0(10.0)
7thGOLDAUS8Rob GoughRYCT12.
8thGOLDAUS3900Andrew McDougallBlack Rock Yacht Club7.
9thGOLDUSA3911Eric AakhusBalboa Yacht Club17.08.0(15.0)
10thGOLDGBR3939Chris RashleyRoyal London Yacht Club5. DSQ)120.059.0
11thGOLDGBR3942Jason Paul BelbenStokes Bay Sailing Club9.013.05.0(22.0)
12thGOLDGBR3836Simon PayneHISC11.0(31.0)
13thGOLDAUS6John HarrisA18L26.
14thGOLDITA3791Francesco BianchiClub Nautico Marina di Carrara10.015.0(61.0 DNC)
15thGOLDAUS3833James Edward DorronManly 16ft Skiff Club30.
16thGOLDGBR3805Tom OfferRock Sailing Club15.
17thGOLDGBR3708Michael LennonHayling Island SC16.0(32.0)
18thGOLDUSA3615George PeetBay View Yacht Club43.0(24.0) RDG147.5123.5
19thGOLDGBR3804Ricky TaggHayling Island SC22.030.025.0(38.0)
20thGOLDGBR3757Ben PatonROYAL LYMINGTON24. DNC)21.026.0198.0137.0
21stGOLDGBR3795Peter BartonRoyal Lymington YC27.
22ndGOLDGBR3916James PhareQueen Mary Sailing Club59.
23rdGOLDAUS2Turner Joe MothmanWoollahra Sailing Club6.0(61.0 DNC)61.0 DNC61.0 DNC5.07.06.0207.0146.0
24thGOLDAUS3783Warren SareWoollahra Sailing Club23.029.0(44.0)
25thGOLDGBR3979Robert GreenhalghStokes Bay SC14.0(43.0)
26thGOLDGBR3892Andrew FriendQueen Mary Sailing Club31.
27thGOLDSUI3626Renker MatthiasRCO32.027.0(37.0)
28thGOLDNED3945Eelco BoersWSV Onder Ons25.0(55.0)
29thGOLDESP3675Pablo ArandiaR.C.N.Valencia21.035.026.0(61.0 DNF)
30thGOLDITA3901Peter StufferSVKS39.0(45.0)
31stGOLDGBR3944Richard WestburyBartley SC37.038.0(46.0)
32ndGOLDAUS3719Phillip KurtsWoollahra Sailing Club19.
33rdGOLDITA3879Harald StufferSVKS35.
34thGOLDNZL3774Matt VincentAuckland SC13.
35thGOLDGBR3941Gareth John Daviesstone sailing club33.
36thGOLDUSA3844Matt KnowlesSail Newport44.
37thGOLDITA3950Enrico FondaY.C. Cortina d'Ampezzo38.
38thGOLDGBR3914Mike CookeBCYC20.
39thGOLDAUS3717Jack Riley SherringSouthport Yacht Club29.
40thGOLDSUI3729Philip KäsermannSociété Nautique de Genève56.
41stGOLDNZL3715Jason RussellHayling Island SC41.
42ndGOLDGBR3607Olivier VidalHayling Island SC36.0(61.0 DNC)61.0 DNC17.
43rdGOLDSUI3625Alessandro FuchsYacht Club Ascona46.048.042.0(54.0)
44thGOLDSWE3666Martin GrävareBRYC60.034.040.0(43.0)
45thGOLDAUS3803Kohei KajimotoBlack Rock Yacht Club34.0(61.0 DNC)
46thGOLDSUI3846Psarofaghis MikisSociété Nautique de Genève42.0(54.0)
47thGOLDITA3854Marco LanulfiCircolo Vela Arco54.0(50.0)
48thGOLDSUI3622Fabien FroeschSociété Nautique de Genève28.039.0(61.0 DNC)61.0 DNC40.045.048.0322.0261.0
49thGOLDITA3912Stefano RizziSvoc40.
50thGOLDITA3872Gianmaria FerrighiCircolo Vela Arco52.
51stGOLDAUS4000Mark RobinsonWoollahra Sailing Club55.
52ndGOLDAUS3920Ben NewlingWSC45.
53rdGOLDITA3392Pietro SibelloGSFG47. DNC)337.0276.0
54thGOLDGER3594Frederik SchmidLSC50.0(61.0 DNC)
55thGOLDGER3684Sven KloppenburgRSV/SCR57.
56thGOLDITA3855Fabio MazzettiCircolo Vela Arco49.
57thGOLDFRA3830Andrillon YannASNQ58.051.054.0(55.0)
58thGOLDSWE3794Emma AspingtonKSSS53. DNC)61.0 DNC61.0 DNC377.0316.0
59thGOLDITA3871Stefano FerrighiCircolo Vela Arco48.053.0(61.0 DNC)61.0 DNC57.053.050.0383.0322.0
60thGOLDGBR3918Simon HiscocksHayling / wpnsa51.0(61.0 DNC)61.0 DNC61.0 DNC41.061.0 DNC61.0 DNC397.0336.0
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