Tuesday, November 17, 2015

Deutscher Touring YC Wins Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga

Deutscher Touring YC winner of German Sailing League (Hamburg, Germany)- It was a thrilling finale for the seventh act of the German Sailing League in Hamburg as the outcome also determined the overall DSBL Champion!  The favored team from the Bavarian town of Tutzing- the Deutscher Touring YC- became the 2015 German Champion by virtue of sailing consistently and staying out of trouble! The Berlin Yacht Club and the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein finished 2nd and 3rd, respectively, and qualify with DTYC for the SAILING Champions League 2016.

The finale of the German Premiere Sailing League in Hamburg shows the persistent, impressive performance of the sailing teams during the season: the “Deutscher Touring Yacht Club” (DTYC) kept everything under control on the last day of racing and defended its top position from the beginning until the end of the event.  As a result, they had every reason to be celebrating like mad men (and women) on the podium, enjoying the traditional “champagne shower” for champions!

J/70s sailing off start- German Sailing League“We achieved much more than our original goal for this season, which was the top five. The success was due to our persistent performance. This is how you get the title. Finally we made it“, said skipper Julian Stückl.  Julian and their DTYC crew of Patrick Follmann, Phil Blinn and Luis Tarabochia were awarded with the much sought-after silver trophy by Robbe & Berking.

After the prize giving at the hosting club, the Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, the new German Champion- Deutscher Touring YC- was also awarded the “Yacht Club of the Year” at the 2015 Sailor Awards for the German Sailing Federation!  An amazing “double” to achieve at the pinnacle of sailing in Germany.

J/70 sailing Deutsche Segel-bundesligaThere are interesting insights and trends as to how DTYC won the overall championship and what makes the German Sailing League such a popular event (any sailing league, for that matter).  For starters, there were 36 teams participating in 2015, 52 clubs of various types sailed the qualifying events (beach clubs, sailing clubs, yacht clubs, community sailing programs, paper yacht clubs, etc).  In total, 384 sailors participated for the year, 215 in the 1st league and 170 in the 2nd league).  The teams sailed in 7 events (Tutzing, Kiel, Warnemunde, Travemunde, Berlin, Uberlingen, & Hamburg) and the host clubs/ PRO’s managed to run 83 races (about 15 minutes each) across a broad range of conditions- drifting to 25 kts of breeze, shifty & streaky to steady and easy.  The format is proving very attractive to the “millennial” generation (those in their late teens to early thirties).  The average age of the champions (Deutscher Touring YC) was 23.6 years old and they were one of the youngest teams! But, in general, the average age is a touch higher, late twenties/early thirties.  Plus, women also LOVE the format; it’s easy, approachable, friendly and social (you’re only on the water for 30 to 45 minutes).  31 women sailed in the events, so women constituted 8% of the participants.  There was three times that amount of women on-shore providing support and volunteering.

How did DTYC win? Pretty simple, the same strategy used in college sailing in America!  The DTYC winners averaged 4th place in each regatta, out of 18 teams!  And, in 83 races, they averaged 2.82 in a fleet of six boats, e.g. just better than an average of a 3rd per race won the entire series!  That’s a remarkably “modest average” and shows the level of hot, friendly competition between the clubs.

J/70s sailing on Hamburg's Alster LakeHere is how the outcome of the final regatta determined the ultimate German Sailing League Champions.  DTYC finished the last event of the year in 3rd place with 33 pts for a 2.54 average, which was enough to clinch the win for the overall title. The Berliner YC won in Hamburg with a great performance- 28 pts in 13 races for a 2.15 average, not bad for a bunch of lake sailors!  They were followed by the Munich Yacht Club in 2nd place only two points back, the one 5th place in Race 11 hurting their chances for the regatta win.  The only club with a realistic mathematical chance of winning overall was Berliner YC; they did what they had to do, which was, win the last event.  However, DTYC would’ve had to finish 9th place or worse to throw away their series lead; which, understandably, they were most determined to avoid at all costs.  Nevertheless, that possibility was in the cards since they had posted regatta finishes of 7th in Travemunde and 8th in Uberlingen.

Spectators at Deutsche Segel-bundesligaThe hosts for the Hamburg event, Norddeutscher Regatta Verein, were determined to put on a good show and fun sailing event.  However, despite the beautiful weather, cool and sunny, there was no wind for the first day of sailing on Thursday.  By 1600 hours, the NRV’s PRO had to cancel racing for the day, as it was a perfect “glass out”.  For all who had been working all day in the shade, on park benches or inside the club, it was time to enjoy the gorgeous sunset and dive into delicious beer and beer-soaked sausages cooked on the “barbie”.  The party on the club’s waterfront was a memorable one for many sailors enjoying the camaraderie and celebration of the end of the sailing season.

The second day began the same way as the first day ended- no wind and lots of waiting time. But, the long faces of the sailors didn’t last long.  Soon, it was time to saddle-up and get out on the water. A total of 18 races (6 per team) were sailed in rapid-fire succession.  At the end of the day, the leader was the Berliner YC. They are followed by Düsseldorf YC and Seglervereinigung Itzehoe.

J/70s sailing German Sailing LeagueThe wind started light, but very streaky and slowly built on the grey on grey day on the normally beautiful Alster Lake.  The level of anxiety was high as each race was shifting the regatta and overall rankings quite dramatically- the benefit of having SAP Sports Sailing database displaying not just mark-by-mark results per race, it was also showing regatta and overall series positions changing in “real-time”, too!  Ouch!  Many of the sailing coaches could be seen pacing anxiously or sitting in subdued moods based on their position at each mark!  Talk about tension!

"Precise timing at the start, tight, tight races, pure adrenaline! That's the league. As the pulse races higher before the starting gun, it continues to stay really high around every mark,” said Johannes Polgar from Norddeutscher Regatta Club. "Our goal is to be the Champion of the SAILING Champions League, it’s not so easy,” he said with a wry smile.

In their bid to win the overall DSBL, Berliner YC had one helluva day.  They performed like clockwork, posting a 1-1-1-2-5-1 to lead their friends from Tutzing (DTYC) who had ended the day in 5th place with a record of 1-4-3-3-2-3.  That meant DTYC’s lead had shrunk to 8 pts, giving Berliner YC a shot at the overall win after one day of sailing!

On the last day, blessed with reasonable sailing conditions, the NRV PRO and regatta team managed to run another 21 races (7 per team) to complete the 2015 DSBL season.  DTYC stayed out of trouble by posting a scoreline of 2-5-1-1-3-4-1 to close out the series with 33 pts to take a third in the regatta and clinch the overall title.  Conversely, their Berliner YC friends stumbled a bit, but not enough to lose the regatta with their 1-4-3-4-1-3-1 tally to win with 28 pts and secure the silver position overall.  Munich YC had a brilliant last day, posting by far the best record (1-4-1-1-5-1-1) to take 2nd in the regatta and 5th for the series.

The third season of the National German Sailing League would again not have been possible without the support of its partners. A big “Thank You” to AUDI, BAY, Vattenfall, Mittelmann’s Werft, North Sails, Bavaria, VODAFONE (new for Hamburg), as well as SAP for the live results & broadcasting!   Enjoy this DSBL Hamburg Finale sailing video on YouTube   For more Deutsche Segel-Bundesliga sailing information