Patton just misses top ten
Campbell Patton has plenty to be proud of after producing his best showing at the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships, that concluded yesterday in Corpus Christi, Texas.
The 17-year-old Bermudian finished twelfth in the 58-strong Laser Radial Boys fleet to improve upon his 30th place showing on his debut at the same event two years earlier in Auckland, New Zealand.
Patton managed four top ten finishes in the nine-race series contested in breezy conditions on Corpus Christi Bay, with a best showing of seventh in the second race to get his bid for a spot on the podium off to a promising start.
“After a solid start to the week I was feeling confident about reaching my goal of top ten as after two races I was sitting sixth overall,” Patton said. “I’ve had a great week representing Bermuda, despite falling just short of my goal.
“This regatta models the Olympics in many ways with the top sailor from each country competing in a very strong fleet.
“My upwind speed throughout the breezy week has been comparable with the top three in the regatta however, I have learnt that I have a long way to go in terms of downwind technique.”
Josh Armit, of New Zealand, topped the fleet with Juan Cardozo, of Argentina, and Zac Littlewood, of Australia, rounding off the podium.
Patton qualified for this year’s Youth World Championships competing at March’s Laser Youth Easter Meeting at Lake Garda, Italy where he placed 39th in a fleet of 126.
“In the future for me is potentially one more Youth Worlds in 2019, provided I’m still light enough for the radial,” Patton, who placed third at this year’s Laser Radial Youth European Championships in Balaton, Hungary and US Laser National Championships in Houston, Texas, said. “The other alternative is to gain some weight and move into the men’s Olympic class which is the Laser standard.”
Also representing Bermuda at this year’s Youth World Championships was Adriana Penruddocke who finished 18th in the 46-strong Laser Radial Girls fleet.
Penruddocke competed against the likes of Great Britain’s Matilda Nicholls whose father Benn Nicholls is a former Bermuda Optimist Dinghy Association executive member. Nicholls finished fifth.
Charlotte Rose, of the United States, was the top sailor with Emma Savelon, of the Netherlands, and Valeriya Lomatchenko, of Russia, finishing second and third.
This year’s Youth Sailing World Championships, regarded as the pinnacle for young sailors who aspire to compete at the Olympics or at other prestigious events such as the America’s Cup, featured 382 sailors between the ages of 16 and 19 from 66 nations.