US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics’ John Ruf is the new 2.4 mR World Champion. Portsmouth, R.I. (November 5, 2009) – 2008 Paralympic Bronze Medalist John Ruf (Pewaukee, Wis.) clinched the 2.4 mR World Championship a day early today, with one race to spare. Ruf, a member of the US Sailing Team AlphaGraphics’ (USSTAG), won the 44-boat, open fleet, beating 2008 Paralympic Gold Medalist Paul Tingley (CAN) and 2009 IFDS Disabled Sailing World Champion Thierry Schmitter (NED). Schmitter also won the 2009 2.4 mR National Championship last week at the same venue.
Held at the Edison Sailing Center on Caloosahatchee River in Ft. Myers, Fla., the 2009 2.4 mR World Championship includes four days of competitive racing for the world’s best able-bodied and disabled 2.4 mR sailors. USA’s Carl Horrocks also clinched silver today, while the rest of the competitors have one more race tomorrow. “I’m in shock. I’ve never won a World Championship,” said Ruf. “It’s pretty humbling, knowing all those people on the trophy. It’s pretty impressive company to be in.”
Ruf won three out of 10 races this week, and after dropping his two lowest scores -- an eighth and 11th -- Ruf’s worst finish was only fourth. He said he never once looked at the results board throughout the week, so he didn’t realize he mathematically had a chance of winning gold today. “I focused on taking one race at a time,” he said.
1st John Ruf USA88
2nd Carl Horrocks USA8
3rd Paul Tingley CAN99
4th Hans Asklund SWE441
5th Thierry Schmitter NED12