As many of you will be aware, at the end of the Hvide Sande World Cup in Denmark, it was announced that Sarah-Quite Offringa was confirmed as the 2017 PWA Women’s Slalom World Champion, based on her having won the first 3 events, and that a 4th event would be a discard.
For the 2017 season however, a progressive ranking points system was introduced for Slalom, meaning that events with 4 or more races carried higher ranking points than events where only a 1 – 3 races had been run. This was introduced to ensure that sailors who did well at events with more races, demonstrating a more consistent performance with less emphasis on luck, were rewarded more highly than those who did well in just one or 2 races at events where we had less in terms of conditions.
When the ranking calculations were made in Denmark, these additional points were not taken into account, meaning that it appeared Sarah-Quita could not be beaten. In reality though however, if 4 or more races are run in the remaining event at New Caledonia, the additional points available would make it possible for Delphine Cousin to win the title, if she wins the event and Sarah-Quita finishes outside of the top 3.
This was a simple clerical error, with unfortunately far reaching consequences, but as a result of the discovery of this error, we have no choice but to offer our most sincere apologies to Sarah-Quita and all of her family, fans and supporters, and retract the premature award of World Champion, which will now be decided at the Airwaves Noumea Dream Cup in New Caledonia, which runs from the 21st – 26th November.
We hope that this error on the part of the PWA will not detract from Sarah-Quita’s incredible achievements this year, regardless of the outcome in New Caledonia.