Sebastian Kempe makes blistering start at British Laser Radial Nationals
Sebastian Kempe and Adriana Penruddocke clinched their spots in the Gold fleet during the final two qualifying races at the UKLA National Championship in Weymouth, England, yesterday.
Kempe posted a 2-3 record on the day to jump two places in the standings from fifth to third among the 123-strong Laser Radial fleet.
He is also first in the under-17 age group and second among the male sailors.
“Today was a difficult day with large wind shifts,” Kempe said. ”This point in the regatta I am trying to stay consistent in the top five and not make any mistakes and then tomorrow and the next day I can afford to take a bit more risk and go for gold.“
Kempe went into the regatta with plenty of momentum, having made local sailing history at last month’s Laser Radial Youth World Championships in Lake Garda, Italy.
The 16-year-old became the first Bermudian to finish on the podium at the regatta after placing third overall and second in the under-17 age group.
Penruddocke, who is also competing in the Laser Radial fleet in Weymouth, posted a 11-9 record in the final two qualifying races to surge five places in the standings from 24th to nineteenth.
She is sixth among the women sailors and has remarkably qualified for the Gold fleet at the first attempt as this is her debut at the championship, being hosted by the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy.
“It’s really good [qualifying for Gold fleet] and I’m really happy considering I haven’t raced internationally for six months,” Penruddocke said.
The 21-year-old is using the regatta as a warm up for upcoming events.
“I am taking it as a training regatta for the upcoming senior worlds and hopefully the Junior Pan Am Games later this year in October/November,” Penruddocke added.
“Even though this is a training regatta, I am hoping to do well against the strong Laser Radial fleet.
“Because I haven’t been able to go to a regatta for one year now since Covid started I am thankful this event is happening.”
Female sailor Daisy Collingridge, of England, tops the Laser Radial standings in Weymouth by two points over compatriot Ben Elvin, with third-placed Kempe another two points off the lead pace.