The first world champions are crowned

After three days at the 132nd Travemünder Woche, the world champions in the RS Venture Connect boat class were decided. Medals were awarded in two categories: the inclusion class and the para class. For the RS Venture Connect inclusion class, it was the first World Championship ever. The gold medal at the world championship premiere went to the Spaniard Gabriel Barroso and his coxswain Javier Serrano. The Swiss Philippe Moerch and Daniel Amiguet won gold in the Para class.
 
The Spaniards Gabriel Barroso and Javier Serrano led the field from the first race of the World Championship off Travemünde. The team won five of the six races held. Only in the last race did they fall behind, but this did not matter as it was the strike result. For the Spaniards it was the first regatta in Travemünde. "We felt very comfortable and welcome here. The Travemünde Week is a beautiful traditional sailing event and Travemünde itself is a wonderful place," said Gabriel Barroso from Toledo. The conclusion of his coxswain Javier Serrano was just as positive. For him, the World Championship debut in the inclusion class was also a personal premiere: it was the first time he sat in an RS Venture Connect at a regatta.
 
Just as consistent as the sailing performance of the Spaniards was that of the German Paralympic winner Jens Kroker and his wife Sabine Kroker-Hohmann, who came second. They finished four out of six races in second place. The couple were very satisfied with their result, although they regretted that there were no more races on the third day of racing due to the weather. "It's a shame to end the Worlds like this, but it's a great result," said Sabine Kroker-Hohmann. For the fact that we were in this boat class together for the first time, we harmonised very well. If another regatta is offered, we would be there again," added her husband.
 
Third place in the inclusion class went to the German Paralympic winner Heiko Kröger with his coxswain Clemens Kraus. Kröger also regretted that no more races were possible on the third day of the World Championships. In the sixth and last race, he seemed to have settled into the boat class that was new to him and crossed the finish line in first place. However, it was no longer possible to continue the race due to the weather. For Kröger, the World Championship was also the premiere in the RS Venture Connect. The day before the first start, he sat in the boat for the first time. His conclusion after two days of racing in the boat class: "The RS Venture Connect is a very special boat that is completely different to sail than other boats. Especially when reefed on the first day of racing, it was difficult to get it through the tack." For him, it was important to send a signal in the direction of the Paralympics by participating in the first World Championships in the still quite new boat class. "To do that, you have to get out of your comfort zone and dare to sail in a new class," says Heiko Kröger. Like many para-sailors, he hopes that sailing will soon be included in the Paralympic programme again.
 
Sigmund Mainka, who has won a gold and a silver medal at Paralympic Games together with Jens Kroker in the Sonar, finished the World Championships in the Inclusion Class in fourth place with his coxswain Jürgen Brietzke. "Even though we could only sail six out of ten possible races, it was a nice event where I met many old sailing friends again. And Travemünde is a beautiful sailing area," the para sailor summed up.
 
For this para class RS Venture Connect, the regatta in Travemünde was the third World Championship. The Swiss Philippe Moerch and his crewmate Daniel Amiguet had an exciting race with an extremely close final decision with the Italians Gianluca Raggi and Emiliano Giampietro. After the six races, both teams were tied on points. Thus, the result of the last race decided the World Championship victory, which went to the Swiss. The bronze medal also went to Italy, to Fabrizio Olmi and Davide di Maria.

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