cecilia-low yong-qiang rachel lee 420 champs

Cecilia Low (extreme left) and Rachel Lee celebrate their 420 win with their coach Yong Qiang (centre). (Photo by Mervyn Kwok. Courtesy of Singapore Sailing)


Austria, August 6, 2012 — The Singapore 420 team of Rachel Lee and Cecilia Low snatched victory on the final day of racing to win the 420 women’s title at the 2012 420 World Championships. Another Singapore pair, Griselda Khng and Lee Shu Xian, finished third.

The Singapore duo had featured prominently in the Ladies standings, placing second, third and fifth. On the final day of racing, Rachel and Cecilia snatched victory from the Chilean pair of Nadja Horwitz and Sofia Middleton who had been leading the event throughout the week, by finishing ahead in the final race to secure victory by a single point.

Griselda, sailing with new partner Shu Xian, ended the series with a win in the final race in their race to third.

The young Singapore team of Kimberly Lim and Savannah Siew also steadily improved throughout the series to finish fourth overall, and they also won the William Sanchez Trophy as the top Under-16 team. What makes their achievement remarkable is that Kimberly and Savannah have only sailed together for six months in the 420.

Together with Jillian Lee and Samantha Neubronner in 33rd position, our girls’ team turned in an impressive showing in the 71-boat ladies fleet.

In the Open category, Singapore’s Nathan Tang and Jonathan Yeo placed 16th overall, just one position ahead of compatriots Darran Choy and Andrew Tang. The pairs briefly broke into the top 10 placings during the week.

Singapore had also previously won the 420 world title in 2010 when Justin Liu and Sherman Cheng clinched victory in Haifa, Israel.

Said Mr Chung Pei Ming, Head for High Performance at Singapore Sailing: “This is a good showing by our team, as it is never easy to win world titles in such Olympic pathway classes. We have a mix of experienced and new sailors in this year’s team, and it is good that the team has done well collectively. Much credit to coach Yong Qiang for bringing up batches and batches of sailors in the double-handed pathway.”

“Its fantastic to see the breadth and depth in our teams from Junior, to Youth, to Senior and now Olympic,” remarked Tan Wearn Haw, CEO of SingaporeSailing.

“Coming off the back of the Optimist world titles, and our Laser sailors’ good showing at the Olympics, this is very encouraging news for the sailing community. It is important to continue to build the fleets, and our pool of sailors in a dynamic environment with healthy competition. It certainly bodes well as we dig in and work towards 2016, 2020 and beyond!” added Wearn Haw.

The event welcomed sailors from 25 countries competing for the world titles in both open and ladies categories. The field also included 2011 Optimist world champion Kimberly Lim, who has moved into the 420 class, and 2010 Youth Olympic Games gold medallist Ian Barrows from the US Virgin Islands.

The event also featured Spain’s gold medallists, David and Alex Charles, in the 420 Boys event at the recently concluded 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds, as well as France’s silver medallists Guillaume Pirouelle and Valentin Sipan.

The Ladies event also saw gold medalists in the 420 girls at the 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds, Ilaria Paternoster and Benedetta Disalle from Italy, and bronze medallists Annabel Vose and Kirstie Urwin of Great Britain.

2012 World 420 Championships — full results