Bugg stops Seguin’s winning streak

Australia’s Matthew Bugg claimed the 2.4m class Sailing World Cup Hyeres gold, ahead of Norway’s Bjornar Erikstad and France’s Damien Seguin. 02 May 2016
Matt Bugg competing in the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup in Melbourne, Australia.

Matt Bugg competing in the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup in Melbourne, Australia.

By World Sailing

The Sailing World Cup in Hyeres, France, came to a close on Sunday (1 May) with overall wins for Australia’s Mathew Bugg in the 2.4m and the Norwegian crew of Aleksander Wang-Hansen, Marie Solberg and Per Eugen Kristiansen in the sonar.

Bugg opened the regatta with a win in the first race and performed consistently throughout placing in the top three in six of his eight races. A second win in the seventh round all but sealed him the win. He finished the final day of racing with 17 points to take his first international event win.

"It was a really good week for me. I won quite convincingly as well so I am definitely happy about that,” said Bugg who finished ahead of Norway’s Bjonar Erikstad (25 points).

“We had a good mixture of weather from very windy to quite light and we managed to get all our races in. I loved it."

With his first international win under his belt, Bugg’s next major competition will be the Para World Sailing Championships in Medemblik, Netherlands from 24-28 May.

If Bugg is going to win there he has to get past defending World Champion Damien Seguin, whose four-race winning streak ended in Hyeres. The Frenchman could only manage bronze on home water with 31 points.

“With my bad few first races it was not the best start from me, but I keep on improving and I think I am in good shape,” said Seguin.

The Sonar gold was won by Norway's Wang-Hansen, Solberg and Kristiansen, who finished their regatta with a win in the final race, their second of the regatta after success in the fifth race.

The week did not start as planned for the Norwegian team though as they could only manage third and seventh in their opening two races.

"It started out rough with heavy weather but we managed to scramble to a fairly good result in the first race,” said Wang-Hansen.

“We had a tough second day also, but the last two days were brilliant for us."

The last two 'brilliant' days included two wins and two second places which moved them to the top of the leader board. The reason for the upturn in fortune was the change in Hyeres winds.

“We like it when it is a bit shiftier and there are more opportunities for gains. We showed that today in our racing,” explained Wang-Hansen.

Finishing nine points behind the winning team was Great Britain who held on to silver with 27 points despite a retirement in the final race. USA ended just one point back on 28 to take the bronze.