AmericaOne Team Members Larson and Hall Win 49er North AmericansGuaymas, Mexico, March 20, 1999--The 1999 49er North American Championships were held in Bahia San Carlos, Mexico, March 17-20, when 18 teams from five nations competed. It was the strongest North Americans yet. The venue was the Sonora Bay Club Med at Guaymas. The event was sponsored by Promotora Mexicana Del Deporte, Gatorade and Video Omega. AmericaOne team members Morgan Larson and Kevin Hall raced in the event and sent this report:SAILING NEWS: March 20, 1999For detailed results and photos, visit the 49er Class North American Championshipp official web site. For more reports about AmericaOne go to ourGrand Prix Sailing News page.
Kevin Hall and Morgan Larson from California sailed a solid 15 race series to win the 1999 49er North American Championships. Eighteen teams from Japan, Switzerland, Canada, Mexico and the United States competed in the magical setting off the white beaches of Club Med at Guaymas, Mexico. AmericaOne team members Hall and Larson led narrowly on points after the opening day and held the lead throughout the regatta despite strong competition.
"We are spending our time off from AmericaOne in pursuit of sailing's other great adventure, the Olympic Games," Larson said. "Our Olympic training schedule works very well with AmericaOne's campaign to win the America's Cup. The work we are doing here will compliment our Cup sailing and we hope that the experience and dedication of a successful America's Cup campaign will help bring us closer to an Olympic medal.
"This was one of the most memorable sailing events I have ever participated in. The practice days were beautiful (sometimes 25 knots, sometimes five knots) winds were generally sea breezes aided by the typical Northerly or Norte. The water was beautiful and full of sea life. Sailing off the beach of Club Med had its advantages as well.
"Kevin and I have had two months off since the worlds with only AmericaOne sailing and the time away made us better. We were so excited to be sailing that we just went out and had a blast! Everything seemed clear and our movements in the boat felt quite natural. The competition was the best we have seen in North America to date. The other American teams have really been working hard and have come a long way. Kevin and I just put together a very solid event which made it difficult for the other teams. I feel very strong about our program to date and it is now time to think about what it will take to beat the Australians for the Gold in Sydney."
Race director Matt Jones from San Francisco, California, orchestrated a world class regatta at a site where sailing races have never been held before. Through the week winds ranged from 10-25 knots, with water conditions that were perfect for 49er racing. Mexico, with the help of Club Med will hold the 2000 World Championships of the 49er Class. Over 80 teams from 30 Countries will come together to compete in what promises to be an exciting and intense event. This will be the last chance for countries to qualify for the 2000 Olympics.
During this year'e 15-race regatta, six different teams rallied to win races but in the end it was Larson and Hall with a total score of 25 points who managed to fend off the constant pressure of Jonathan and Charlie McKee from Seattle. The level of this new Olympic Class has risen quickly over the past four years. Australia is still producing the top teams yet the United States has now a handful of teams that have the skills to win on the International circuits.
1. AmericaOne, Kevin Hall/Morgan Larson, USA, 25
2. McLube, Charlie Mckee/Jonathan Mckee, USA, 33
3. Revo, Adam Lowry/Andy Mack, USA, 53
4. Acme Ext., Chris Lanzinger/Jay Renehan, USA, 53
5. Canada, Trevor Baylis/Tina Baylis, CAN, 65
6. Ombrelle, Jeff Eckard/Jason Rhodes, CAN, 73
7. Bob G, Alan Johnson/Chris Henderson, USA, 76
8. Switzerland, Bruno Zelter/Chris Rast, SUI, 79
9. Toyota, Tomoyuki Sasaki/Kenji Nakamura, JPN, 91
10. Michigan, David Fox/Chad Hough, USA, 109
11. Corona, Belsausteguigoita/Mergenthaler, MEX, 142
12. USA East, Jason Seifert/David Fagen, USA, 154
13. Golds Gym, Brenden Couvreux/Sean Couvreux, USA, 159
14. BMW, Guillermo Leon/Antonio Goeters, USA, 172
15. USA North West, Stuart Galt/Sean Galt, USA, 195
16. USA Seattle, Tyler Beck/Bram Dally, USA, 214
17. Gatorade, Mike Danielson/Kim Albarran, MEX, 227
18. USA North East, Colin Gowland/David Wilson, USA, 247
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