In Kerteminde, Denmark, Nick Dempsey will this week look to defend the RS:X Windsurfing World Championship title he won in his home town of Weymouth 12 months ago when racing starts on Sunday (29 August), while Beijing bronze medallist Bryony Shaw will hope her consistent form this season will carry her through to her first RS:X World Championship medal. “To be World Champion is right up there,” said Dempsey of his 2009 Worlds victory.
“I hadn’t won it before and last year I was desperate to win – it was the right time and it meant a hell of a lot,” he explained. A disappointing medal race which led to bronze at Skandia Sail for Gold also means that Dempsey arrives at the World Championships eager to retain his crown, although he admits a second straight world title win would be no mean feat in the 120-strong men’s fleet. “Everyone is getting better, everyone is getting faster and fitter, with better technique, they are learning to race better. The younger kids are starting to do well. It is getting harder and harder,” he explained.
Shaw is confident of her form and fitness going in the event: “It will be a hard fight, but I feel that this year has been going well and we have been hitting our goals. Speed-wise I am going pretty well and my fitness is up there for the light wind races.”
The venue conditions in many ways are also quite similar to Weymouth and Portland,” Shaw continued, “so to win a Worlds in a venue that is quite like the Olympic venue would also be a big statement about my capabilities of sailing in these types of conditions.”