Williams wins World Match Racing Title
Williams and GAC Pindar claim record sixth World Match Racing Tour title after Monsoon Cup victory
Johor, Malaysia – GAC Pindar skipper Ian Williams has today entered the record books as the first to win sailing’s World Match Racing Tour title six times. Williams previously won the title in 2007, 2008, 2011, 2012, and 2015. He beats his own record set last year when he won the title for the fifth time.
Today’s victory will go down as Williams’s best yet, after being drawn into a thrilling three-way battle with Björn Hansen (Nautiska) and Taylor Canfield (US One). Williams went into the final event of the tour, the Monsoon Cup, knowing that the tour title would be his if he finished ahead of either of his two challengers, due to the 2 point lead accumulated over the season.
Williams and the GAC Pindar crew secured the title and the accompanying $80,000 prize money with a convincing 3-0 victory over Canfield in the final race. After bad weather had called off the quarter finals on Friday, the GAC Pindar team was given automatic entry into the semi-final along with Canfield and Hansen due to their good records in qualifying. Canfield’s strongest qualifying record allowed him to select his opponent first, and he faced the lowest-ranked Eric Monnin, meaning Williams faced closest challenger Hansen in the semi-final.
The GAC Pindar crew was able to close Hansen off and take the advantage over the start line. From there they took control, and finished with a comfortable 2-0 victory.
They then went on to claim the Monsoon Cup against Canfield’s US One team in the final, with a 3-0 win securing yet another record for Williams, who overtook his own record to become the only skipper to have won the Monsoon Cup four times.
Williams said: “We’re all absolutely thrilled with the result – a great job by GAC Pindar all year which has culminated in this final victory. I can’t reiterate enough how great the team have been to the man – I certainly had to make them work for it after the poor start, but we pulled it together when it mattered.
“It’s an incredibly difficult race course and, even though we fell behind, it was all about keeping the pressure on and waiting for Canfield to make a mistake. We were ready to pounce when the opportunity arose, and made the pass with enough space to extend our lead.
“I’d like to thank the crew for their incredible effort over the 2015/16 season. We’ve worked incredibly well over the year and it really is an honour to sail with them. I’d also like to thank GAC Pindar for all of their support in helping me claim this record-breaking sixth world title.”
Andrew Pindar, GAC Pindar team principal commented, “It’s yet another fantastic record-breaking achievement from Ian and the crew. The commitment, resolve and dedication that Ian practices has really shone through this week and he’s got the result he deserved. We’re absolutely delighted to work with a consistent record-breaking champion.”