SAN DIEGO, CALIFORNIA (USA) – Inconsistent winds greeted the return of the Extreme Sailing Series in sunny San Diego, yet with Hagara (skipper and helm) and Steinacher (tactician) on the boat together for the first time all season, Red Bull Sailing got off to a flying start, earning podium finishes in fully fifty percent of the opening day’s races and taking a total of nine podiums by the time the regatta concluded on Sunday. With their win in front of the large crowds on Harbor Island, Oman Air broke Alinghi’s three-act winning streak and kept the Championship alive with only the finale to go.
“We were really looking forward to returning to San Diego, and it’s great to be back on the water and racing in the sunshine here,” said Hagara, who took gold in the Tornado class with Steinacher at the 2000 and 2004 Olympic Games. “Hans Peter and I have been sailing so long now that we know each other very well and picked up our rhythm quite quickly. It’s like riding a bike, you get right back into it.”
Hagara and Steinacher not only lead the Red Bull Sailing Team in the Extreme Sailing Series, but also are the masterminds behind the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup and Red Bull Foiling Generation. Joining the Austrian legends on the Red Bull Sailing GC32 in San Diego were Rhys Mara of Australia, Dan Morris of the USA, and young Micah Wilkinson of New Zealand, who with his partner Olivia Mackay won the inaugural Red Bull Foiling Generation World Final in 2016 and the Flying Phantom Series of the Extreme Sailing Series in 2017. Wilkinson also stood on the podium in the 2017 Red Bull Youth America’s Cup, and is now aiming for the 2020 Olympics in Tokyo and very possibly a professional career in the sport.
“I was lucky enough to do Red Bull Foiling Generation and stepped up to the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup. Then this week I jumped on the GC32 team for the first time, and it’s been an awesome pathway,” Wilkinson declared. “Hans and Roman are great mentors. I’m a multi-hull sailor through and through, and these guys are the best at it – sailing legends with two Olympic Gold Medals. It’s going to be a lot of hard work toward something like an America’s Cup team, but I’m up for it, and it’s been a really good stepping stone.”
The next generation of youth sailors will have a chance to boost their profile like Wilkinson when 16 international teams race on Flying Phantom catamarans at this season’s Red Bull Foiling Generation World Final in Miami, USA on 9-11 November 2018.
And then: It’s the all-out action of the Extreme Sailing Series grand finale, as Red Bull Sailing flies in the closing campaign of the season at Los Cabos, Mexico from 29 November through 2 December 2018.
Results Extreme Sailing Series Act 6, San Diego, USA: 1. Oman Air (OMA) 233 pts, 2. Alinghi (SUI) 232 pts, 3. SAP Extreme Sailing (DEN) 226 pts, 4. Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 199 pts, 5. INEOS Rebels UK (GBR) 190 pts, 6. Element Spark Compass (USA) 159 pts, 7. Team Mexico (MEX) 147 pts
Overall Extreme Sailing Series rankings after six of seven acts: 1. Alinghi (SUI) 68 points, 2. SAP Extreme Sailing (DEN) 65 pts, 3. Oman Air (OMA) 63 pts, 4. INEOS Rebels UK (GBR) 54 pts, 5. Red Bull Sailing Team (AUT) 50 pts, 6. Team Mexico (MEX) 42 pts
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Contact: Mario Schoby / +436646385997 / firstname.lastname@example.org
About Roman Hagara and Hans Peter Steinacher
Roman Hagara and Hans Peter Steinacher are Austria’s most successful summer sport athletes, having won two Olympic gold medals (Sydney, Athens) and numerous world championships. They are the only Austrians to have competed on the America’s Cup World Series. Determined to see sailing progress to the next level, they groom the next generation of sailors by leading the Red Bull Sailing Team in the Extreme Sailing Series and by serving as sports directors for Red Bull Foiling Generation and the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup.
About the Extreme Sailing Series 2018
In seven events spanning three continents, the Extreme Sailing Series brings the action right to the public, with stadium sailing on foiling catamarans in the heart of vibrant global destinations. Schedule 2018:
14-17 March: Muscat, Oman
24-27 May: GC32 World Championship, Lake Garda, Italy
14-17 June: Barcelona, Spain
5-8 July: Cascais, Portugal
24-27 August: Cardiff, UK
18-21 October: San Diego, USA
29 November-2 December: Los Cabos, Mexico