Matt Wearn Wins Gold at Maiden World Championship
Perth’s Matt Wearn has broken through for his maiden ILCA 7 World Championship, breaking a run of three consecutive silver medals.
The World Championship Gold will sit neatly alongside the Olympic title he collected at Tokyo 2020 and sets him on a path to continue Australia’s golden run in the class at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games.
“It feels fantastic, it’ll probably sink in a little bit later tonight when I can sit somewhere quiet and have a chat with (wife) Emma,” said Wearn.
“It’s just incredible to be so close so many times, and to come out with it now is great, especially with everything that has happened in the last eighteen months.”
Wearn had an insurmountable 20-point lead coming into the Medal Race, but still had to sail the race cleanly to collect the crown.
Wearn transitioned from long-time Coach Michael Blackburn to Rafa Trujillo after the Tokyo victory, and the pair have now won the Paris Olympic Test Event in Marseille and a World Championship in the past two months.
“Now it feels like we are really starting to gel,” said Wearn of his relationship with Trujillo.
“It’s been a great change-up and it’s been great for the squad as well. I think the good thing is we still have a lot of work to do, Rafa and I, so we will work on that over the summer in Australia.
That summer will include a defence of the title he won here today, when the 2024 ILCA 7 World Championships take place at the Adelaide Sailing Club in January.
Queensland’s Mara Stransky qualified for today’s ILCA 6 Medal Race in tenth place, but a slow start proved costly.
“I had an opportunity to move up a couple of spots, but I needed to win the race,” said Stranksy.
“In the end I didn’t have my best day, but I am still happy to come away with a top ten finish at the Worlds.”
Today’s racing brought the 2023 Allianz Sailing World Championships to a close, with Australian Sailing Team High Performance Director Iain Brambell delighted with the “very exciting performance” of the Australian Team.
“With five classes qualified for the Paris Games and three medals, including Matt’s impressive Gold and Bronze in the 49erFX and Women’s Hansa 303, we are on a very positive trajectory into Paris,” said Brambell.
“We have many learnings coming out of these championships that will be carefully debriefed to ensure we continue to convert more boats into Medal Races across more classes to ensure there are more Australian crews positioned for podium performances in Paris.”
There isn’t much rest for Australia’s Formula Kite athletes, as they are off to their European Championships in Portsmouth next month.