Charlotte Dobson & Sophie Ainsworth

Well to wrap up 2014 it was good but we want 2015 to be great! We end the year third in the World rankings. It’s scary to think the Olympic games are next year… We better get cracking.

In November 2014, we went out to Rio and it was incredible, the entire 49erFX top 10 bar the ITA team met us out there. We didn’t miss a single days sailing, it was 12-18 knots everyday except one, where we had a light wind race and finished fourth.

In the first regatta we finished third overall, we might have been able to do better if it wasn’t for the fact the Dutch boat that won had a 87KG crew on the wire, it was like trying to keep up with a rocket. The crew was previously a 49er sailor that narrowly missed out on Olympic selection for 2012; needless to say they kept steeling our bullets!

We finished a painful fourth in the second regatta that left us feeling exhausted and ready to come home to blustery Weymouth. We were equal points with third place, but they beat us in the last race – the crews race, which was non-disgardable and double points!!!! We won the crews race last year, although the fleet was four time the size this time. We finished a respectable fifth, but got piped on the finish line to lose our podium position – this did not impress Charlotte! It was hilarious, we don’t often swap roles in the boat and it became apparent why, we were doing each other’s jobs from the wrong end of the boat. We had better get practicing for next year, but thankfully there is no crew’s race in the Olympics.

So, having been sailing in lycra and 30C, we came home to Weymouth with an average of 20knots and 9C. Once the initial shock had passed that we really were spending 6 weeks in Weymouth and we had acclimatised it was brilliant. Despite the fact we were wearing 8mm of wetsuit and struggled to move sometimes, we had some of the best training we’ve had, it was also the wettest. We were pushing ourselves to the limit, and that often ended up with a capsize. A Danish team joined us for training before Christmas, so we had another team to play with and we got an excuse to have an extra Christmas dinner – to show them what they are missing out on… We have to say a thank you to our coach for pushing us on the water to work that off the next day!

We are now back in the gym working off Christmas and preparing for Miami, where we head out next week. We will compete in two regattas, the mid winters and the first World Cup of the year. We’re excited but also a little bit nervous as we’ve haven’t been sailing in light winds for a while, let alone racing in it, but we love a challenge.

All we have left to say now is thank you for your continued support and Happy New Year.

Charlotte and Sophie

 

Charlotte Dobson & Sophie Ainsworth