Germany, International German Championship 2001
June 28th - July 1st
First four races in very light to no winds, extremly shifty, Sunday more wind with hiking conditions
by Nick Craig on 28 June 2001
The OK German Nationals started on the River Elbe in tricky conditions with many leading names putting in early discards in a strong international fleet of 42 boats. A very patchy force 1-2 and strong but swirlling current left the fleet tightly packed with many places to win but much more easily lost!
Triple National Champion Rudi Prinz (GER) showed his light wind speed once again with a healthy win after hitting the left corner up the 1st beat and coming out nicely in front in new breeze. Weighing in at a very light in OK terms 70kg, he will be hoping for more of the same. Runner-up last year, Jorn Wille (GER) also likes the light winds and put in a useful 2nd followed by Uwe Bohm (GER). This was a day when the 4 pre-event favourites put in scores ranging from average to disaster - reigning Champion Nick Craig (GBR) was 8th, leading Kiwi Greg Wilcox 18th, past Champion Martin von Zimmerman (GER) 25th and a confused looking World Champion Karsten Hitz back in 36th!
Forecast is for more of the same over the next 3 days so avoiding distaster will be the name of the game.
by Nick Craig on 29 June 2001
Conditions for race 2 of the OK German Nationals were similar to the previous day -light and very shifty winds with fast moving current.
Jörn Wille (GER) from the home club on the River Elbe read the wind well to open up an early lead an extend throughout the race, despite the efforts of lightweight Ingo Ballerstein (GER) to chase him. A large shift up he penultimate beat allowed Thomas Glas (GER) through to 2nd followed by Ballerstein and Ralf Mackmann (GER). World Champion Karsten Hitz (GER) showed his disdain for light airs by staying in bed after drinking most of the free beer last night!
Race 2 opened in a force 3 giving competitors their first chance to stretch the legs and plane! Nick Craig (GBR) opened up an early lead but was quickly under pressure as the wind died and started shifting wildly, giving a very close race in the leading pack. On the last very broad reech, past Champion Martin Von Zimmerman (GER) went on the opposite gybe to everyone else, got downtide and popped out in the lead when the leaders got becalmed. However, he ran out of wind up the last beat allowing Wille who seemed to be in a gust all day to win again, followed by Craig, Mackmann and Von Zimmerman.
At the halfway stage, Wille holds a huge lead and is totally in tune with the very shifty winds - more of this is forecast for the next 2 days so he looks hard to beat.
by Peter Scheuerl
The wind seemed to be even lighter that the days before. After a first beat wich saw both sides favoured from time to time, the right paid at the windward mark, when there was much more wind. Christian Hartmann (GER) and Ingo Ballerstein lead the fleet with a huge margin, nearly one leg in front. On the second beat already about 60 degree changed in course the wind died totally. While the rest of the fleet reached the leeward mark together with some wind filling in again, the two top boats went up to the windward mark again, where the course was shortened. Ingo Ballerstein won from Christian Hartmann. When the whole fleet where about half up the beat, a 90 degree shift with some wind changed all placings totally, with the ones top the right reaching towards the finish, close to planning, while the left and middle ones still had to beat against the very light wind.
The race committee tried to start another race, but as the wind dropped again, the fleet was pushed over the line by the current with no way to avoid it due to no wind. After two general recalls many sailors went to the starting vessel to tell the RC to abandon racing for the day, which the RC then did.
Final Day & Overall
by Nick Craig on 02 July 2001
The final day of the OK German Nationals bought excellent sailing conditions at last - force 4 & sunny after 3 days of light airs. This produced some major changes in the leader board after the lightweights who had been dominating the Championship struggled to hold on.
Despite the higher winds, it remained pretty shifty with a large shift left up the 1st beat of race 5 splitting the fleet. Long-time rivals Nick Craig (GBR) and Karsten Hitz (GER) engaged in an epic battle for the lead with never more than a length between them and 30+ tacks exchanged up the last beat with Craig just winning. Former Champion Martin Von Zimmerman (GER) led the chasing pack home from Frank Schonfeldt (GER). Overnight joint leaders Jorn Wille (GER) and Ingo Ballerstein (GER) were 14th and 19th respectively opening the event right up going into the final race.
Wille was still leading but only by a point from Ballestein and 4 points from Craig.
The wind picked up another notch for the final race with a gusty force 5 and steep chop causing a few casaulties on the run. Hitz showed why he is World Champion with some impressive speed to win by a comfy margin. A close race in the chasing pack saw Oliver Gronholz (GER) score his best race of the week in 2nd, followed by Peter Scheuerl (GER), Craig and Greg Wilcox (NZL) feeling more at home with sun & wind! With the lightweight Ballerstein back in 22nd and Wille upside down, this was enough to give Craig the championship.
|1||GBR 2094||Nick Craig||8||8||2||14||1||4||23,0|
|2||GER 721||Jörn Wille||SVAOe||2||1||1||12||14||DNF||30,0|
|3||GER 671||Frank Schönfeldt||ENSFR||6||5||7||8||4||8||30,0|
|4||GER 607||Ingo Ballerstein||SCOe||7||3||5||1||19||22||35,0|
|5||GER 693||Martin v.Zimmermann||SCOe||13||16||4||34||3||7||43,0|
|6||GER 624||Thomas Glas||SSC||25||2||6||4||18||19||49,0|
|7||GER 599||Uwe Böhm||SCSt||4||10||OCS||10||16||10||50,0|
|8||GER 449||Sönke Behrens||SCOe||10||12||17||13||6||9||50,0|
|9||GER 711||Rüdiger Prinz||SSeV||1||7||8||OCS||22||13||51,0|
|10||GER 727||Karsten Hitz||SSC||35||DNC||11||3||2||1||52,0|
|11||GER 27||Tom Gosch||ENSFR||12||9||16||11||10||11||53,0|
|12||GER 642||Ralf Mackmann||SCH||5||4||3||25||26||DNF||63,0|
|13||GER 659||Falk Hagemann||SWSV||3||20||9||5||30||28||65,0|
|14||NZL 512||Greg Wilcox||WSC||18||14||19||35||12||5||68,0|
|15||GER 576||Ralf Tietje||WSVE||9||26||12||22||9||16||68,0|
|16||GER 725||Christian Hartmann||VSaW||17||15||15||2||25||DNF||74,0|
|17||GER 618||Peter Scheuerl||NRV||19||32||27||20||5||3||74,0|
|18||SUI 66||Michael Bachmann||SCOW||21||22||26||9||20||6||78,0|
|19||GER 726||Jörg Sylvester||SSC||11||19||10||28||23||20||83,0|
|20||GER 705||Peter Holzwarth||SCBo||23||23||18||16||8||21||86,0|
|21||GER 688||Dirk Dame||SVM||29||11||21||33||11||14||86,0|
|22||GER 686||Kai Witt||MSC||22||29||DNF||6||13||17||87,0|
|23||GER 662||Gerd Breitbart||SCOe||28||6||23||21||24||15||89,0|
|24||SUI 6||Kirstin Brand||ENSFR||15||13||OCS||7||32||26||93,0|
|25||GER 717||Oliver Gronholz||SSC||DNC||17||OCS||32||7||2||101,0|
|26||GER 697||Jörg Posny||SSeV||20||21||OCS||15||28||24||108,0|
|27||GER 649||Sven Wurmdobler||SVWS||27||34||22||29||17||18||113,0|
|28||GER 670||Hinnerk Ries||SCOe||DNC||36||33||26||15||12||122,0|
|29||GER 703||S-O Baumgartner||SCOe||30||18||30||24||31||27||129,0|
|30||GER 724||Marina Dellas||OYC||32||28||31||31||21||23||134,0|
|31||GER 605||Rolf Münch||SUGF||24||31||20||23||DNF||DNF||141,0|
|32||GER 720||Daniel Gröschl||YCS||33||25||24||17||DNF||DNC||142,0|
|33||GER 635||Jens Bock||SCSt||34||35||32||19||29||29||143,0|
|34||GER 664||Thomas Neveling||SCPs||31||33||29||18||34||DNF||145,0|
|35||GER 630||Norbert Petrausch||TSVS||37||30||25||38||33||25||150,0|
|36||GER 606||Harald Kölsch||TSVS||14||DNF||14||DNC||DNC||DNC||157,0|
|37||GER 698||Karsten Kath||SVNE||36||37||35||27||27||DNF||162,0|
|38||GER 657||Claus Nehrig||MSC||16||27||DNF||36||DNC||DNC||165,0|
|39||GER 674||Birke Taufenbach||DNF||24||13||DNF||DNF||DNC||166,0|
|40||GER 651||Heinz Ridder||SVP||26||38||28||37||DNC||DNC||172,0|
|41||GER 696||Jürgen Dieris||SCCR||38||39||34||30||DNC||DNC||184,0|