Racing News

How to win the X 35 Worlds

Gold and Bronze Medals in the X35 Worlds on Saturday was no coincidence

Gold medals on their way. Photo: Mick Anderson/

On Saturday the two Elvstrøm Sails ambassadors Morten Ulrikkeholm and Torsten Bastiansen took the Gold and Bronze in the X 35 Worlds; both Yachts powered by Elvstrøm EPEX sails.

The remarkable outcome is the result of an intensive two year campaign for the two friends and their crews. Physical training and many hours on the water for both teams, culminating with the joining of Danish double Olympic Gold winner Jesper Bank from Elvstrøm Sails last Autumn, added more structure to their joint World campaign.

Just a boat and a great idea

“When we first showed up at Elvstrøm Sails we were in poor condition” remembers Morten Ulrikkeholm.  “We just had a boat and an idea to become the best X 35-team in the World. Elvstrøm Sails listened to what we had to say and trusted our ideas.  Elvstrøm have supplied total support, not only with fast sails but also with coaching and planning of our Worlds campaign.”

No discussion

At the meeting about the set-up for their World campaign, a decision was made to include coaching sessions with Danish former X 35 European Champion Michael Hestbaek.  Torsten Bastiansen is convinced the signing of Hestbaek made a difference to the campaign.
“During our training sessions we experienced how he added calm and balance to the crew and decisions were no longer a discussion" he says.

Be ready a month ahead

Morten Ulrikkeholm is convinced the WC title was achieved thanks to a crystal clear objective and a most dedicated crew, an excellent partnership with Torsten Bastiansen, his Team Xen and the massive back-up from Elvstrøm Sails.

Among other things Jesper Bank explained the importance of not showing up to an important event like the Worlds leaving all the small details to the last moment.  
“He coached us to be sharp and fit a month ahead of the event” explains Torsten Bastiansen.

Water in the cabin

Both teams were tuned mentally and physically for their World campaign. This was clearly illustrated by Team Oxygen who less than a week before the Worlds, won the Big Boat Race Series in Aarhus in convincing style; taking six firsts in a row.

It furthermore adds to the Oxygen victory that they didn't realize until late in the series that the log was incorrectly installed and the boat therefore was taking in lots of water. Fortunately they got it fixed and the rest is history.

Congratulations to both Team Xen and Team Oxygen from Elvstrøm Sails.  Great effort!