The Monsoon Cup is finally here and it’s time to crown the best match racing team in the world in the final event of the Alpari World Match Racing Tour. For Björn Hansen and his team it’s a chance to take an historic victory and become World Champions. Their task is clear but far from easy to accomplish- if they win the Monsoon Cup, they take home the Title. To do that, they will have to beat the match racing elite and in particular Ian Williams, the reigning champion currently in second place on the scoreboard.
Nevertheless, Björn Hansen seams to be taking it cool and Sailing Sweden has talked to him about leaving it all out on the field.
We are counting the hours until the big final event starts, how does it feel?
It feels great to be here. Tensions are building up and obviously we feel a bit different going in to this regatta than we are used to. But, we feel happy and excited more than nervous and I think we have an healthy amount of pressure on us. We have a great opportunity to become world champions and that’s an amazing thing to experience.
So you are looking forward to having a good week?
Yes absolutely. Still, we need to be humble because we know that we need to perform well in order to win. If we do that this will be a great week for us. All the other teams have beaten us before but we know our potential and what we need to do to stay on top of things.
Your main opponent Ian Williams said it’s difficult to talk about the conditions at the Monsoon Cup since they are so different every year. Do you agree?
Yes, this is our sixth time in Malaysia and I agree that the conditions have been very different. The wind is unreliable and last year the current was very strong. That’s a factor you don’t have to think about at most other venues.
We have been warming up this weekend training against Phil Robertson and Adam Minoprio. Their teams have shown that they are at a high level and Minoprio has won both the World Title and the Monsoon Cup in the past.
Does it still feel like the race for the Championship Title will come down to you and Williams?
Sure, it’s very possible that other teams will challenge for the title as well but the feeling we have now is that the tour will go to either to Williams or us. I think one of us could fail completely but I think it’s unlikely that both of us do. After all, we are the best teams so far this season. A dream for us would be to race against Williams and his team in the final. That would be battle to remember and whoever won would become world champions.
Are you already dreaming about lifting the trophy?
Well I see nothing wrong with dreaming and it’s all about creating positive images in your mind. We will try to win the regatta and that would of course mean a lot for us. There are other scenarios in which we would win the title but the goal is without any doubt to win the Monsoon Cup. We are going to give everything to make that happen and I’m sure we are going to have fun and enjoy this week. After all, there is no other team that we would trade places with. In fact, I think it’s the other way around and we are very proud of what we have achieved so far this season. We are hungry for more but quite relaxed and I that’s how it should be.
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Text: Fabian Bengtsson