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Marco Gradoni of Italy is Optimist World Champion

After a day of waiting for wind on the water, Italian sailor Marco Gardoni is the 2017 Optimist World Champion.

Gardoni was hoisted, in his boat, onto the shoulders of his coach and supporters as the Italian flag waved above him, horns honked and a crowd cheered the newly anointed Optimist World Champion.

In turn, Malaysia’s Muhammad Fauzi Bin Kaman Shah won silver in the individual series, a step up from his bronze last year.

Costa Rica’s Mic Sig Kos Mohr, who spent months training in Thailand, won bronze.

Thai sailor Panwa Boonnak and Jedtavee Yongyuennarm finished 10th and 13th overall, an impressive feat in the huge fleet of 281 sailors.

Britain's William Pank finished 19th overall.

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In the Top Female category, Spain’s Maria Perello took gold.

At just 12 years of age, she could prove a talent to watch with three more years in competitive Optimist racing.

Thailand’s Palika Poonpat, a cousin of 2010 World Champion and two time Top Female Nopakkao Poonpat, took silver in the female ranks.

The USA’s Charlotte Leigh won bronze.

The USA team also goes home with two additional trophies - the Nation Cup for overall best combined performance of team members, and the IODA Challenge Cup for team racing.

The 2017 Optimist World Championship was organized by the Royal Varuna YC with the endorsement of the Yacht Racing Association of Thailand and the Junior Sailing Squadron of Thailand under the International Optimist Dinghy Association.

Full final results here (pdf)

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