THE cancellation of racing on the final day for the Paralympic classes saw Portland’s Megan Pascoe secure her second consecutive Miami World Cup title.
The conditions also handed the island’s Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell victory in one of only two events that’s eluded them so far during their six-year SKUD partnership.
The British Sonar trio of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas claimed silver, having also seen no racing on Friday, while Paralympic champ-ion Helena Lucas joined Pascoe on the podium, winning 2.4mR bronze just three points behind her team-mate.
“It’s a very, very good way to start off the year,” Pascoe admitted.
“Last year here was a bit more tricky – I wasn’t quite leading going into the last day and I had to have a few things go my way – but last week has steadily gone my way. Everything’s been really fast and I’m really, really happy.”
The 2.4mR fleet was sent out and even managed to start a race before any trace of wind finally disappeared from their course area.
“We had quite nice wind to start with – it was about six knots, as the beat progressed it was going more and more left, the pressure was becoming incredibly patchy,” the 27-year-old Pascoe explained.
“But going down the run it just went incredibly soggy – I was lucky enough to have had a good beat and was ahead of Helena and Allan, which is what I had to be, so even if the race had finished I was confident I’d still be in the position where I am, but the race wasn’t going to finish. “We were definitely going to be timed out on that one.”
Pascoe, aiming to qualify for her first Paralympic Games at Rio 2016, admits that her Miami win is a timely confidence boost at the start of the season.
“I think 2014 could be very important in terms of my Rio campaign. There are all sorts of rumours about when trials might start, but really it’s always nice to win and it would be nice to go to the IFDS Worlds in a really good place.
“They’ve always kind of eluded me, so hopefully we’ll get one this time.”
Meanwhile, Paralympic SKUD class gold is the thing left on Rickham and Birrell’s hit list after finally breaking their Miami World Cup duck. “We’ve been to the Miami World Cup five times – my first ever SKUD event was out here in 2008. We’ve done every year except one since then, and we’ve had every result from fifth to second I think. Finally, now we’ve got to the gold, so now we’ve got a 1,2,3,4,5 in our five attempts.”