15th July 2019 - Yachts & Yachting

Story by Paula Irish; photo Paul Wyeth/RYA

Lymington teenagers Vita Heathcote and Milly Boyle are new 420 Women’s World Champions after clinching the title in a close finish at Vilamoura, Portugal.

The pair dominated the regatta with eight top 10 finishes but saw their healthy lead cut to just a few points on the final day, under pressure from Italian duo Irene Calici and Petra Gregori.

Victory was sealed when the last race of the event was abandoned due to lack of wind.

Heathcote and Boyle have risen through the ranks of the British Youth Sailing programme.

Heathcote, 17, said: “The last race was so nerve-racking. After five years of sailing 420s we’ve finally won the world championships and it’s such a good feeling.”

Boyle, 18, added: “The Italian girls did so well… we got a little lucky at the end but we will take that. World champions, we’ll tick that box off, thank you very much!”

Heathcote and Boyle finished the 10-race series four points ahead of Calici and Gregori, with Melina Pappa and Maria Tsamopoulou of Greece taking bronze.

Britain’s Jess Lavery and Rebecca Coles were eighth. In the boys’ fleet, Haydn Sewell and Will Heathcote were the top Brits in 15th.

Read on Yachts & Yachting website here.

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