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Doughty pumped up for Moth challenge

The thought of racing against some of the world's elite sailors at next month's Amlin International Moth Regatta in the Great Sound has James Doughty's adrenalin pumping.

Doughty is the sole Bermudian sailor registered in a regatta that will feature a plethora of America's Cup sailors, including Nathan Outteridge, the two times Moth world champion, who Doughty last faced in the 29er at the 2002 ISAF Youth World Championships in Nova Scotia.

Otteridge won that year, with Doughty winning in the 29er class the following year at the Cork Regatta in Ontario in 2003

“Competing with the best sailors in the world at this level will definitely be the peak of my sporting career so far,” Doughty said. “I will be in the mix and it will be interesting to see where I compare to them.”

In all, the regatta has attracted a fleet of 60 sailors, with 20 America's Cup sailors in that number, from 11 countries.

The Moth has gained popularity with America's Cup sailors because it hydrofoils, similar to the catamarans used in America's Cup racing.

“The Moth is a very different boat, and so it's a lot more tricky and difficult and definitely favours certain body shapes and sizes,” Doughty said. “It's a very complicated boat and physically and technically demanding as well.

“You have to be very clinical in your manoeuvres, because one little mess up and the boat wipes out and then you're out of that race pretty much. Everybody is going to overtake you because everything happens so quickly.”

Doughty's preparations have been anything but smooth foiling due to conflicting work commitments on the Spirit of Bermuda, and unsuitable weather conditions.

“Any time the wind is between 6 to 20 knots I am out training, which in the past month hasn't been the best because it's either been blowing 30 or nothing.”

Doughty's preparations were also hindered initially by a lack of Moths to spar with before Oracle Team USA and Artemis Racing arrived on Island with their fleet of the foiling single handed dinghy.

“Until the America's Cup guys showed up there was no fleet in Bermuda, so we only had about two or three boats to gauge ourselves against,” Doughty said. “The fleet, which consists of four boats, are not out all the time. I'm the only consistent one that's out every weekend.”

*Emirates Team New Zealand's Peter Burling and Blair Tuke have been awarded the 2015 ISAF Rolex Sailor of the Year award.

The duo received the prestigious award in recognition of their 21 straight regatta wins since 2012 in the Olympic 49er class, including victories at the 2015 Aquece Rio, Olympic Test event, ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres and Weymouth and Portland as well as Trofeo Princesa Sofia and most recently winning the 49er South American Championship.

Burling and Tuke are the sixth and seventh Kiwi sailors to receive the award.

Going solo: Doughty will take on a host of America's Cup sailors in the Amlin International Moth Regatta

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Published November 13, 2015 at 8:00 am (Updated November 13, 2015 at 12:27 am)

Doughty pumped up for Moth challenge

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