EIGHTEEN-year-old Connor Bainbridge put his many years of experience sailing in the high winds at Halifax Sailing Club, to good use last week in the Windsurfing World Championships in Cadiz, Spain.
The ex Crossley Heath student was hoping to build on his success at the European Championships in Madeira last month where he came fourth in the under section at the World RS:X Championships.
Bainbridge knew that competition would be tough in the Olympic year as many of the competitors use the event to focus their skills ready for the summer so tensions were high.
Bainbridge nearly didn’t make it to Cadiz as he was in A&E with an infected leg the day he was to travel to the event; thankfully his determination and penicillin got him there.
After the first three days of racing Bainbridge sailed into the gold fleet meaning he was in the top 60 sailors in the world, along with the four other British sailors. He wasn’t in the ideal placing at 40 but was determined to climb up the fleet so in winds topping 30 miles an hour he began his task and successfully gained a 13th place in one of his races.
The winds became too strong so racing ceased after the sixth day but not before Bainbridge had put in some great performances to see him finishing 30th man, fourth under 21 and second British sailor.
Nick Dempsey, the selected GBR Olympic athlete, came second while Bainbridge was thrilled to be on the podium again and is hoping that as he was in the top 25 per cent of the fleet he will be awarded Olympic Development funding next year.
Anyone interested in the future support of a potential Olympic athlete then Bainbridge would love to talk to them. He can be contacted on 07896325973
Bainbridge hopes to be back sailing at Halifax in May for the annual Dawn to Dusk windsurfing event for Cancer Research.