Big day for big boys at 29er Worlds
Published on July 27th, 2016
Medemblik, Netherlands (July 27, 2016) – It was a big third and last qualifying day for big boys at the 29er Worlds 2016 in Medemblik, Netherlands. The southwestern breeze increased from 8-10 knots in the morning to about 20-21 knots during rain showers in the afternoon. Four races were sailed, resulting in big gains and losses.
Where the Australian leaders Tom Crockett and Harry Morton extended their lead, dropped the Slovenians Rok Verderber and Klemen Semelbauer dramatically from second to nineteenth place. The qualifying series are now completed. As of tomorrow, the fleet will be divided into gold (50), silver (50), bronze (64) and emerald (64).
“Today, it was harder for the teams in the backfield,” commented René Kalff, race officer on course C. “They showed more capsizes, but they were still smiling. You could see the sailors enjoying the fun in strong winds. Due to the offshore direction, there were no waves, which made it easier to deal with the conditions.”
Crockett and Morton were indeed flying on the IJsselmeer. The Aussie friends for life, they grew up together, scored three bullets and a sixth position. The British duo Crispin Beaumont and Tom Darling managed to finish only top three, which lifted them from fifth to second place overall.
The Americans Quinn Wilson and Riley Gibbs entered the top three with their score 4-1-1-5. ‘It was windy and cold”, they said after returning to the harbour. “The first race was tricky. The wind went up and down and I think it was the closest and lightest race today. There was a pretty big pack fighting.”
Two other American teams also made it to the top ten of the qualifying series. “That is really great. We had a good training team. We are progressing a lot. It is nice to see that all the hard work is paying off.”
The Danish team also has two boats in the first ten. Both are from the Royal Danish Yacht Club, that appointed former Laser Radial sailor Alberte Lindberg as coach. Lindberg quitted racing in 2012 and started coaching her husband Anton Dahlberg in the 470 and some 29er and 49er teams. Lindberg:
“We are here with four teams and our goal was to qualify for the gold fleet. Hopefully we will fight into top ten the rest of the regatta.” About today’s races she said: “It was quite windy and shifty. We also had rain showers coming in. It was basically like in Denmark with shifty conditions and an offshore breeze. We always feel at home in the Netherlands.”
Another remarkable loss came from the Argentineans Santiago Duncan Loinaz and Elias Dalli, who dropped from tenth to 34th. The Aruba team of Odile van Aanholt and Bart Lambriex however climbed on the leader board from place 37 to 13 by finishing 3-4-2-4. The top all female duo Annabelle Davies and Hayley Clark from Australia won today’s first race and added a 9-6-7 to their qualifying score, resulting in the fourteenth position overall. The final result of the qualifying series count as one for the final series, to start tomorrow on Thursday July 28.
Despite the Dutch weather, the Regatta Center Medemblik will be covered in Brazilian style tonight. Competitors, coaches, volunteers and organizers will enjoy the barbeque with Olympic theme, as warming up for the 2016 Olympic Games in Rio.
Racing is scheduled for July 25-30.
Source: Diana Bogaards, 29er Worlds