In late November, the best Paralympic sailors from around the world will be heading to the Royal Yacht Club of Victoria (RYCV) in Williamstown for the 2015 Para World Sailing Championships (26 November – 3 December 2015).
A total of 136 sailors are registered for the event, from 31 countries.
Host-country Australia will have their entire Paralympic Australian Sailing Team & Squad crews at the start line. Australia won the nation’s ranking at last year’s Para World Sailing Championship and also qualified all three Paralympic boat classes for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games. With less than one year out from Rio 2016 the Australian Sailing Team is looking strong again after multiple top podium finishes across the international season.
Australia’s London 2012 Paralympic gold medallists Dan Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch (AUS), the current World Champions in the SKUD18 class, will be aiming to defend their World Championship title with less than year to go to the Rio 2016 Paralympic Games (8-17 September 2016).The who’s who of Paralympic Sailing will be racing, including London 2012 gold medallists Helena Lucas (GBR) in the 2.4mR and Daniel Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch (AUS) in the SKUD18, and a distinguished list of Paralympic medallists and former world champions.
Sailors will compete in three classes: the one-person keelboat, the 2.4mR class; the two-person keelboat, the skiff-like SKUD18 class for a mixed crew; and the three-person keelboat, the Sonar.
The 2015 Para World Sailing Championships is the final opportunity for countries to qualify for the Rio 2016 Paralympic Sailing Competition. Seven 2.4mR, five SKUD18 and six Sonar spots are up for grabs.
In advance of the Para World Sailing Championships, an ISAF Paralympic Development Program clinic is taking place out of RYCV.
The Paralympic Development Program aims to support the development of national Paralympic programs, increase the attendance by nations at the Para World Sailing Championships and enable ISAF members to develop a sustainable grass roots program for Para World Sailing.
Throughout the clinic, sailors will benefit from on-water expertise, sailing in the Paralympic one-person keelboat, the 2.4mR, as well as daily on-shore briefings.
Many of the competitors will stay on for the ISAF World Cup (7 – 13 December), also run on Port Phillip, which follows on from the Para World Sailing Championships at RYCV.