Mother said there’d be days like this

Published on August 6th, 2018

Aarhus, Denmark (August 6, 2018) – Sailing’s oldest enemy played havoc on what was supposed to be the busiest day of the Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus 2018 so far.

The morning forecast for 8-10 knots westerlies, maybe building and swinging to 12 knot south-westerlies by the late afternoon, gusting up to 20 knots, did not materialize.

Amid the qualifying stage for many of the fleets, and with only some of the teams able to race today, the leaderboards were unclear, but there were still some significant moves for the fleets that are now in the final stage.

In the men’s 470, Australia’s Mat Belcher and William Ryan, the silver medallists in Rio, gold medallist in London 2012, won the only race of the day in the gold medal fleet. They are now just one point behind the Swedish 2018 European Champions, Anton Dahlberg and Frederik Bergström, whose 13th place became their current discard.

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The women’s 470 gold and silver fleets tried to start long into the afternoon to no avail. The Finn gold and silver medal fleets had been postponed earlier in the day while no races were possible for the Men’s RS:X and Women’s Kiteboard.

In the Nacra 17, only the yellow qualification fleet was able to get two races in and even the hot favourites, Italy’s Ruggero Tita and Caterina Marianna Banti, struggled. In the first race they were 23rd at the top mark before storming back to 4th. But they could not repeat the trick in the second race, finishing 16th – their current discard.

Nacras need 10 to 15 knots to foil upwind and about 7 knots to elevate downwind. But one Argentinian crew will not have been complaining about boats being stalled on the finish line. Mateo Majdalani and Eugenia Bosco, who followed a win with a second place, being one of three boats to benefit in the slowest motion of a finish as the Finnish boat went backward from leader to fourth crossing the line at just over a knot.

In the 49er, the young French pair of Lucas Rual and Emile Amoros continued to enjoy themselves with a fifth and a ninth place keeping them top – albeit in an incomplete day of racing. That last ninth place will not count, however, because the other two 49er fleets were unable to run their seventh races. The fleet will now be split into gold, silver and bronze fleets on the basis of their first six races – the minimum required for qualification – and race again on August 8.

Only one fleet in the 49erFX managed a race. The second fleet will complete their sixth race tomorrow to finish the qualifying round. Denmark’s Jena Mai Hansen was among the fleet unable to race today.

“We were a little pressured because the other FX fleet got one race in and we needed to squeeze our race in,” noted Hansen. “We thought we were going to start but it completely disappeared. We waited for one and a half hours on the water. The weather is supposed to pick up tomorrow so we hope to get an extra race in.”

France’s Nicolas Parlier won the only race in the men’s Kiteboard – to make it seven out of seven so far.

In the women’s RS:X, Great Britain’s Bryony Shaw won the only race possible and Poland’s Zofia Noceti-Klepacka was third to keep her at the top of the leaderboard.

The big winners today may have been the Laser and Laser Radial which were on a lay day.


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Stu McNay/ Dave Hughes (USA) slip to 11th in the 470 M (7 races) and Nikole Barnes/ Lara Dallman-Weiss (USA) remain 36th in the 470 W (6 races). Chris Rast/ Trevor Burd (USA) move up to 31st in the 49er (6 races) while Stephanie Roble/ Maggie Shea (USA) stay at 21st in the 49erFX (5 races).

Sarah Newberry/ David Liebenberg (USA) are 10th in the Nacra 17 (3 races), Geronimo Nores (USA) is 43rd in the RS:X M (3 races), and Farrah Hall (USA) jumped up to 39th in the RS:X W (3 races). In the Kite fleets, Evan Heffernan (USA) is 19th (6 races) and Daniela Moroz (USA) is 1st (3 races).

Getting the day off today, Paige Railey (USA) sits 3rd in the Laser Radial (6 races), Chris Barnard (USA) is 29th in the Laser (6 races), and Tom Ramshaw (CAN) is 4th in the Finn (6 races).

The Sailing World Championships, held once every four years for all ten Olympic classes, has 1,400 sailors from 85 nations in close to 1,000 boats for competition. There are also two kiteboarding events competing, which along with the Olympic classes, have their competition staggered from August 2 to 12.

In addition to World titles, the event is the first and largest country qualifier for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games with 40% of the places being decided. For information on how nations qualify for the 2020 Olympics, click here.

Source: World Sailing

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