Germany's best sailors in the Olympic disciplines 49er, 49erFX, Nacr17 and Laser in Australia have been preparing for their 2020 World Championships, which will take place almost simultaneously and in the same bay, for weeks. Your stage is 165 days before the first Olympic starting shot in Enoshimdie Phillip Bay on the south coast of Australia - with mostly shallow water and often beautiful winds, a protected dream area not only for Olympic sailors.
Only two months ago the world's best crews from the Olympic disciplines 49er, 49erFX and Nacr17 met for the World Cup in New Zealand. If you want to experience the highlights again, take a look here. Starting next week, Australia will be all about World Cup medals and big Olympic dreams
Vice world champions Erik Heil and Thomas Plößel during World Cup training in front of Geelong
If you have a bird's eye view of the bay, you will find the port metropolis Melbourne, its suburb Sandringham and the yacht club of the same name on the right-hand side, which will host the 2020 world title competitions for the laser sailors starting on February 11th.
On the left side of the bay is the 160,000-inhabitant city of Geelong, where hundreds of skiff and mixed catamaran sailors prepare their World Cup missions. Your series starts on February 10th.
Have a top result in their sights at the World Championships: Nacra 17 helmsman Paul Kohlhoff and crew member AlicStuhlemmer
Start optimistically into the 2020 World Championships, which will be early in the Olympic year: Erik Heil and Thomas Plößel
The smallest field is made up of the mixed crews on the foiling catamarans with 37 teams from 16 nations. 45 women duos from 23 countries compete for world championship medals on the 49er sister FX. In the 49er itself, 80 men's teams from 27 countries are at the start. With 130 dinghies from 45 nations, the laser sailors in Melbourne almost single-handedly achieved the total number of boats in these three spectacular World Cup classes and thus remain by far the largest Olympic sailing discipline.
Erik Heil and Thomas Plößel gave them a great fight at the 2019 World Cup in their home territory. Can the Berliners again shake the throne of the New Zealand high-flyers at the 2020 World Cup? A nice study by "Pistol Pete" and his buddy Blair
After the failed 2019 World Cup, Tim Fischer and Fabian Graf want to make up ground at the 2020 World Cup in front of Geelong with a view to the national elimination
In all four World Cup series, the German starters can and want to intervene in the battle for the medals. It is precisely these four of the ten Olympic disciplines that represent the most successful of the past few years from a German perspective.
Their goal is clearly defined: Vicky Jurczok and AnikLorenz want to return to the top of the world in the 49erFX
Laser ace Philipp Buhl can make everything clear
Sanni Beucke promotes the healing process of her broken fibula
In the laser, Philipp Buhl would like to make Phillip Bay his own at the start of the Olympic year, even if it is written a little differently. The three-time World Championship medalist, who competes for the North German RegattVerein and his hometown sailing club Alpsee-Immenstadt, has prepared on site with his young and aspiring teammate Nik Aaron Willim (North German RegattVerein) and national coach Alex Schlonski and feels fit.
Buhl told YACHT online on Friday: "The wind forecast looks very good. At the moment we are still training, we are preparing for the new boats. This time the sails will even be set here at the World Cup. We look forward to when it starts. Now Train once, then clean and measure boats and recharge your batteries and good mood."
In contrast to the crews of the German Sailing Team on the other side of the bay, Buhl has not yet got his ticket for the second Olympic Games in his pocket, but he secured the nation's starting place in 2018 with a bronze medal in Aarhus and very good Olympic qualifications. Prospects: The Allgäu leads the national elimination with 19 points. Even with an average good performance, he should be able to make everything clear in this third and final national elimination series for the laser sailors.
To do this, Buhl, like everyone else, has to take the third hurdle called "DOSB Olympianorm" and be placed in the top ten nations after adding up the results of the three elimination regattas. Anyone who knows Buhl knows that they want more. Above all, he wants to get back the consistency with which he achieved series successes in 2018. In the past year, he missed her at times, even if the 30-year-old with bronze in the strong field of the European Championship 2019 in Porto left no doubt that he can be expected at any time in the battle for precious metal.
Kohlhoff / Stuhlemmer in Nacr17 without competition from their own country
On the left side of the bay, the national elimination for Paul Kohlhoff and AlicStuhlemmer in Nacr17 does not begin until this world championship. In the meantime, however, the Kielers are unrivaled in their own country, because after Johannes Polgar handed over the tiller to Jan Hauke Erichsen from Flensburg due to a knee injury, the successor crew is also out of the race: Jan Hauke Erichsen and CarolinWerner join the 2020 World Cup after 34th place of the 2019 World Cup no longer.
Without national opponents and the pressure to still have to secure the nations starting place - they succeeded at the 2019 World Cup - Kohlhoff and Stuhlemmer want and can achieve more than twelfth place in the 2019 World Cup before Geelong. Paul Kohlhoff reported on Friday: "We had a good preparation and are very satisfied with our progress. The area is once again a rather special one. The wind is always offshore. We want to be better overall than in New Zealand and in the absolute top group play along."
Erik Heil and Thomas Plößel want to do their own thing in the 49er
More national competition and exciting constellations for their second of three elimination regattas for only one Olympic ticket each prevail in the 49er and 49erFX skiff disciplines. In the men's category, the reigning Berlin vice-world champions Erik Heil and Thomas Plößel (North German RegattVerein) lead the elimination with a whopping 30 points, which won them the silver medal at the World Championships in Auckland - which, however, by no means causes the veterans to overestimate them at an early stage.
Erik Heil says: "We hope for solid results, we concentrate on ourselves. The conditions here are very tricky. That usually plays into our cards, but it can also be nerve-wracking. We want to achieve our best result without considering other German results. Anything else would be too early.
And there are too many opponents (with a view to the national competition in the fight for the Olympic ticket, d. Ed.). Tim and Fabi can knock you out. Megge and Spranger drive really good races here. And Justus and Max have been really solid in the last few days. Sometimes one of them can have a cool regatta. So our planning does not include a German infight for the time being. And by the way, matching in connection with an objective outside of the regatta is again forbidden."
Behind Heil / Plößel are their friends, sparring partners and rivals Justus Schmidt / Max Boehme from the Kiel Yacht Club in the Olympic elimination standings after round one with nine points in second place. Jakob Meggendorfer / Andreas Spranger (Bayerischer Yacht-Club) had been able to collect four points at the start of the elimination in New Zealand, while the World Cup third from Aarhus 2018, Tim Fischer / Fabian Graf (NRV / Verein Seglerhaus am Wannsee) at their botched World Cup 2019 surprisingly came out empty-handed at first. The scenario raises many questions before the start of the World Cup on February 10th: Can the Rio bronze men Heil / Plößel dominate again and shake the throne of New Zealand world champions Peter Burling / Blair Tuke as furiously as they did in Auckland have done? Or can another German 49er top team shine? Will Tim Fischer and Fabian Graf, who are still pointless but fast, make the comeback that Vicky Jurczok and AnikLorenz are aiming for in the 49erFX?
49er FX: Jurczok / Lorenz in "Beast Mode", conversion at Lutz / Beucke with LottWiemers
Like Fischer / Graf, the Berliners from the Seglerhaus am Wannsee association could not score points in the first elimination regatt within the framework of the 2019 World Cup. "We're under enormous pressure," admitted helmsman Vicky Jurczok before the start of the World Championship on Monday, "but we're trying to get our skills back on the water. We can sail well and we can drive top three. We have to manage to switch to 'Beastmode'."
The competitors TinLutz and Susann Beucke, on the other hand, had impressed in the first round of elimination at the World Cup in Auckland with fifth place, conceded 16 points and thus earned a comfortable cushion of points in the third attempt at the Olympics. Now, however, TinLutz has to start the second elimination regatt with a substitute Vorschoterin, because Sanni Beucke broke his right fibula during training in Buenos Aires and is not yet operational again despite good progress, but supports the team in Geelong.
LottWiemers from Kiel, still known to many sailors by her maiden name Görge, has taken on the difficult task of the substitute woman. TinLutz says: "We are very lucky that Lott has left everything behind for us at home to take over for Sanni. We have been training together for two weeks and have settled in quite well. Lott is doing a great job and got back into sailing very quickly."
What is not a matter of course despite many years of competitive sport, as Lutz explains: "It's hard to believe that Lott hasn't stood on a 49er for more than two years. She struggles with her hands and her sailing-specific fitness, but she bites through and grows daily beyond their limits."
The Bavarian helmsman from the Chiemsee Yacht Club is optimistic about the joint World Championship: "I am expecting an exciting regatt with Lotta. For me it is a victory that we can sail here. A few weeks ago I thought I could do the World Championship do not participate. " TinLutz also dares to make a cautious weather forecast for the opening Monday in Australia: "As we have little wind in training, I expect it to start to chop in time for the start of the World Cup."
Here TinLutz is in action with regular crew member Sanni Beucke, at the World Championships she starts with replacement crew member LottWiemers from Kiel