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Yes its all over, another World Championship completed. This years World Championship were sailed off the coast of Varkiza 30km from Athens, Greece 17th-26th August. We arrived in Athens almost 6 weeks ago. We came early to get a feel for the local conditions and Greek culture The things that we would need to deal with in the next 3 years leading up to the Olympics in 2004. Our regatta started off slowly with only one race on the first day. The wind died and didn't come back for a long 2 days. We sat on the beach under what shade there was vwaiting, vwaiting and vwaiting. The race committee sent us out twice to try and get racing under way, but the wind failed to deliver a steady 5 knots to race in. Brief race reports Day 1. My first race was a shocker, one that needs to be forgotten quickly, caught on the wrong side of the course, basically game over. 30th good on ya Aaron nice way to start a regatta. Day 4. The wind arrived, yes this is what we were expecting off shore winds up to 25 knots, The breeze would build from nothing about 8am and build to around 10 knots by race time at 11am and build through out the day. McIntosh dishes out a lesson on how to race in these conditions with a 1st place followed by a 10th, getting caught in the netting at the bottom mark slowed my progress with the leaders and a 7th to finish off the day. Happy but, you have to do better that that to win I said. Day 5. Wind again and forecast to stay. Well when you I thought you had seen my worst in the first race, I pulled out another shocker with a 47th ouch, not the way I wanted to start the day, I got caught up in a start line crash and just couldn't find my way through the mine field. Not one to dwell on bad performances I put my best foot forward and took it to them with a show of what I am capable of, I took a good win. Sorry guys McIntosh will not that it lying down, and finished the day with a 3rd back in the action. Day 6. A different breeze blowing coming directly off the beach so the Race Committee moved us into the bay, The breeze shifted and died, back to beach and we played the waiting game again. 1.20pm the breeze kicks in and we are on. Started well 3rd at the first mark 2nd to the second mark feeling good, lost 2 places and the breeze died and filled in from the right side, guys in the 30s getting back into the race, I finished 18th just unlucky. I followed that with a 12th and then 4th finally coming off the water at 8pm in very bad way, not to add that the measurers wanted to measure my equipment and then had to complete a drug test. Eat and sleep was not difficult. Day 7. This was the day to finish off. With good day I could move into 5th position with a bad day I could finished 10th you only think about going forward. 2 races were scheduled. Wind doing funky things between the inner and outer loop courses we sail. Delayed starts again. I must take my hat off to the race committee for there patience and waiting for the best of the conditions. race 11 an 18th place losing 10 places on the top reach , we were racing close to the shore with very gusty winds. Imagine sitting in no wind watching 20 guys flying up behind you doing 25 knots knowing that they will also stop before the next gust comes, but the may have the momentum to pass, well it happened to me, very frustrating. Last race must preform to do it. I pulled out 3rd in the same trying conditions. 6th overall. Happy knowing it could have been worse and frustrated, knowing I can still win. I look back at the last 4 months travelling racing a training and really try to get a feel for why this result was what I came out with. I know I have not had the same fire to my training as last year. I did the work I felt great but I lacked the same intensity. Maybe to much time away from home I am not sure I will do such a long stint in Europe next year. Equipment I used was the same gear that I had at the Olympics great gear, I had good speed but was worried my sail would not last the distance. Lucky it did. Post Olympic year ???? it is early days in the Olympic cycle, with 3 years to go it would seem silly to burn out now. My last 4 years were full, I raced nearly 40 regattas, I achieved a lot but I must look solely at Athens 2004 I think more training camps and less racing could be the plan, the key is to map out the next 3 years carefully. Overall Results 1st Nickolaos Kaklamanakis Greece.2nd Przemek Miarczynski, Poland3rd Fabrice Hassen, France.4th Gul Fridman, Israel.5th Nicolas Huguet, France6th Aaron McIntosh, New Zealand. Other Kiwi results. 12th Jon Paul Tobin26th James Wells46th Mathew McCormick58th Scott Radly(2nd Silver Fleet) 33rd Sheena McKinnon (women's) I would like to thank the following for there continued support. New Zealand Sports FoundationLine 7SubaruRipcurlRayglass BoatsYaching NZPower BarOakley. With all that said, I am coming home, yippee. I am home on Thursday 30th August and back to work on the 3rd Sept. I hear that there is some great snow around, anyone keen for a snowboard session this weekend. See ya soon. Aaron McIntosh.

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