Ladha, Inkpen competing for Canada at world championships in Marseille
Newfoundland sailors Jonathan Ladha and Daniel Inkpen will compete for Canada next week in the World 49er Sailing Championships in Marseille, France.
Ladha said there will be about 100 boats, with 45 to 50 countries competing in the event.
“All the best teams in the world will be there,” he said.
The best a Canadian team has ever finished at the world championships is 13th. There are four Canadian boats competing in the event. Ladha and Inkpen are both with the national team, and there are two other national-team crews as well.
“We want to finish in the top 25. It would be a very big accomplishment if we were able to finish better than any previous Canadian team,” said Ladha, who is from St. John’s.
He said they will hold Olympic qualification the same time next year, and the pair would like to be in the top 10 in the world by that time.
“Those are realistic expectations and realistic goals,” Ladha said.
“Of course, we want to win, as unrealistic as that is at this point.”
The duo won gold in the 49er class regatta in Kingston, Ont., and also at the national championships in the same location in July.
Recently, they took a bronze medal at the United States nationals in New York.
The team has been preparing at the Canadian Training Centre in Halifax and have been racing and training daily in preparation for the worlds.
The duo has two 49er class boats, one at home which they also use while in Halifax and another that’s available to them when they compete in Europe.
“It’s actually cheaper to own two boats in two different places than to have to move from North America to Europe,” said Ladha.
Ladha said Oceanex has been very supportive in terms of moving the boat from St. John’s to Halifax and Montreal.
The team held a special launch ceremony Monday morning from the Boathouse at Quidi Vidi Lake. They left for England Monday night.