Sharon Kantor (ISR) and Nicolo Renna (ITA) are the new iQFOiL world champions

Kantor also wins selection for her country and at the age of 20 she will compete in her first Olympics in Marseille.

A thrilling final day of the iQFOiL World Championships, the Olympic windsurfing class, in Lanzarote saw both of the racers who had dominated through the week beaten in the Men’s and Women’s Grand Finals. Italy’s Nicolo Renna, third last year, won the title in the Grand Final for the Men and Israel’s Sharon Kantor won the Women’s world title when she overhauled Britain’s Emma Wilson, who had stamped her authority over the entire championship until the final title showdown. 


The nine day championship mustered 200 athletes from 43 countries at Marina Rubicón in Lanzarote. And today’s Grand Final again proved how exciting and how cruel the new Olympic windsurfing format can be, since the winner takes it all. All that matters is who is first across the finish line in the one Grand Final race.


There were between nine and 11 knots of easterly winds today and a big crowd gathered in front of the Marina Rubicon breakwall to enjoy the action. 


Sharon Kantor beats championship leader Emma Wilson. 

The women raced first. In the quarterfinals, in which seven compete and only two go forwards to the Semifinal, it was Sharon Kantor (ISR) and Sara Wennekes (NED) who progressed to join Pilar Lamadrid (ESP) and Katy Spychakov (ISR) in the Semis. Having finished on top of the qualifying phases Briton Wilson was already in the Grand Final. 

Katy Spychakov and Sharon Kantor made it to the Grand Final joining Wilson to compete in the last race on the Lanzarote regatta course.

Bronze in the last World Championship in The Hague when she had again led into last day and winner of a bronze medal in Tokyo, Wilson went straight to the Grand Final after winning 15 from 20 races. She jumped the start gun on the first attempt which requires her to take a five second delay to the second attempt. Even so it did not matter and Wilson started the Grand Final recovering those five seconds and taking the lead but the Israeli girl got through to win the title and secure her spot at the Paris 2024 Olympic Games for her country. 

"It hasn't been easy!" she grinned as soon as she crossed the line. "The last race was so tough, and Emma and Katy were so fast! It was a nice fight. I have really enjoyed this event, I have had ups and downs. I am very grateful to have succeeded in the end.”


Nicolo Renna takes the risk and wins

Defending Dutch world champion Luuc van Opzeeland and Renna have swapped 2023 results. 

The Dutch 2023 world champion, like Wilson, remained on the top of the rankings through the whole week and also had gone straight to the Grand Final. But this time it was the Italian who prevailed. 

The Italian Nicolo Renna and Pawel Tarnowski (POL) emerged victorious from the Semifinal to face each other in a quick Grand Final - it was resolved in seven minutes – along with the defending champion Luuc van Opzeeland (NED), the big title favourite in Lanzarote.

After an intense start and several lead changes on the last upwind the Italian decided to go to the right, a decision that paid off for him. “I saw that they were going to the other side, I was last so I thought 'come on, let's try it' and it all came good.”

The Italian was delighted but paid tribute to his friend and rival. “We have been together for two months in Lanzarote and it paid off.”

Pawel Tarnowski wins silver while Luuc van Opzeeland finishes third in the key event before the Olympics: “I had a fabulous start and I thought I rounded the gate first and then I picked the wrong side and I realized half way that the left was not working but I tried to do an early tack but It didn't pay off downwind. It’s been an amazing week, I am super happy with the result and proud of Nicolo.”, he pointed out.

The next Lanzarote International Regatta 2024 World Championships are the 49er and 49erFX, from March 4 to 10.

The Lanzarote International Regatta is organized by Marina Rubicón and has the collaboration of the Royal Canarian Sailing Federation, as well as the institutional support of the Tourism area of the Lanzarote Cabildo through the sports product European Sports Destination (managed by SPEL-Turismo Lanzarote), Promotur Turismo de Canarias, the Yaiza City Council and the private entities Dinghycoach, Naviera Armas and Cabrera Medina (Cicar).

Final standings 

iQFOiL Men 

1. Nicolo Renna (ITA)
2. Pawel Tarnowski (POL)
3. Luuc van Opzeeland (NED)

iQFOiL Women

1. Sharon Kantor (ISR)
2. Emma Wilson (GBR)
3. Katy Spychakov (ISR)

Keeping the pressure up

Luuc van Opzeeland and Emma Wilson continue to lead iQFOiL World Championships in Lanzarote for the third day in a row. Tomorrow will see a marathon and more Course Racing starting at 10:00 local time.

Day 1 draws a blank at the 2024 iQFOiL World Championships

The 212 Olympic windsurfers who have gathered in Lanzarote for the 2024 iQFOiL World Championships will have to wait until Tuesday for the first races. There was insufficient wind on Day 1 and the opening races are now programmed for tomorrow, starting at 11:00 island time.

The fight for the iQFOiL world title starts tomorrow in Lanzarote

On the beautiful Canary Island of Lanzarote everything is ready for Monday’s start of the iQFOiL World Championships, the first major world championship of an Olympic class to be held in Europe in this 2024 Olympics season. More than 200 athletes from 43 countries on five continents will compete over six days of competition culminating in the title deciding Grand Final on Saturday, February 3 followed by the prize-giving

Olympic sailing classes choose Lanzarote

Lanzarote is getting ready to usher in the Olympic sailing season ahead of what promises to be an exciting, challenging year. Ahead of Paris 2024 nearly half of the Olympic sailing World Championships have chosen Marina Rubicón as their venue.

The wind was there, but it wouldn’t play ball

The sunshine was out and the northerly breeze was blowing, but the direction was all over the place on day seven of the Lanzarote International Regatta. Sailors have come from around the world to train and race out of Marina Rubicón in the south of Lanzarote, but even the most reliable of sailing venues has its ‘off days’

Kiwis lead Nacra 17s, Kantor & Sills top iQFOiL

Tuesday was the start of part 2 of the Lanzarote International Regatta. After two days of the dusty Calima breeze from the Sahara, today the sunshine returned to the Canary Islands, and 10 to 14 knots of wind were blowing for the opening day of Nacra 17 and iQFOiL racing

Two British skiff golds and a Spanish 1-2 in the 470

Winds of 13 to 19 knots for three Medal Races in poor ‘Calima’ visibility. Last gasp victory for Xammar & Brugman in the 470 Victory for Great Britain in men’s and women’s skiff fleets. Four days of Nacra 17 & iQFOiL windsurfer competition start on Tuesday.

Not the Wind, not the Waves, but the Sahara!

Anton Dahlberg & Lovisa Karlsson (SWE) extended their lead in the 470 after winning another big wave, big wind race on day three of the Lanzarote International Regatta. It proved to be the only race of the day, with no competition for the 49er or 49erFX fleets.

“Defo the Biggest Wave of My Life!”

Big wind and huge, steep swell set a massive physical challenge for the three Olympic fleets on day two of the Lanzarote International Regatta in the Canary Islands.

Lanzarote ready to test top Olympians

More than 360 of the world’s best sailors are ready to compete at the Lanzarote International Regatta, which takes place in the south of the Canary Island from 9 to 17 February

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