Dicey start to Laser Radial Worlds
Published on February 23rd, 2020
Melbourne, Australia (February 23, 2020) – After a day of light and fluky conditions in which only one race could be sailed at the 2020 Laser Radial Women’s World Championship, the first day of qualifying had defending titleholder Anne-Marie Rindom (DEN) winning the Yellow Fleet while Marie Barrue (FRA) won Blue Fleet.
“It’s early days, but it’s a good way to start,” noted Rindon.
Yellow Fleet had the better of the weather, getting away shortly after the scheduled start time in 6 knots of breeze and managing to finish before the wind began swinging wildly. Those in Blue fleet had a frustrating day, with race one starting almost on time but being abandoned at the first mark owing to a 30 degree shift.
Top North American was Sarah Douglas in 9th, while best among the U.S. athletes was Erika Reineke in 17th overall. Steve Mitchell (GBR), the US Sailing Team’s Laser Radial coach, noted that it was not a day for the timid.
“You had to be decisive off the start line and know when to defend your position versus attack to gain more spots—it was a tricky day,” said Mitchell. “It was very hard to know which side would win until after the race.”
Regarding Reineke, he was comfortable with her aversion to taking significant risks on day one, “She missed a few opportunities where she could have attacked, and was a bit too conservative, but for the first race of a regatta, you have to be.”
The 2020 Laser Radial Men’s World Championship is being sailed at the same venue, with the fleet dominated by Australians. But it was a Russian, Daniil Krutskikh, who won the only race of the day, from locals Michael Compton and Jordan Makin.
Like the women’s Blue Fleet, the men endured re-starts and abandonments before finally getting a result.
With light winds forecast for tomorrow morning, the race committee has announced that first signal will be at 2pm, as scheduled, but if the winds settle as forecast, they will try to get three races sailed so the regatta is back on schedule. A cold front is expected to arrive on February 25.
The championship schedule has two races per day for six days on February 23-28.
With North American nations continuing their selection for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, Sarah Douglas (9th) leads a Canadian contingent that includes Coralie Vittecoq (17th), Maura Dewey (60th), and Clara Gravely (93rd). Five sailors represent the USA with the event as the final stage of the nation’s selection series. Erika Reineke (32nd) now leads selection followed by Paige Railey (52nd) and Charlotte Rose (77th).
Day One Results:
Women (Top 10 of 105; 1 race)
1 Marie BARRUE (FRA) 1
1 Anne-Marie RINDOM (DEN) 1
3 Maud JAYET (SUI) 2
3 Vasileia KARACHALIOU (GRE) 2
5 Marit BOUWMEESTER (NED) 3
5 Svenja WEGER (GER) 3
7 Mirthe AKKERMAN (NED) 4
7 Marie BOLOU (FRA) 4
9 Sarah DOUGLAS (CAN) 5
9 Mara STRANSKY (AUS) 5
Men (Top 10 of 66; 1 race)
1 Daniil KRUTSKIKH (RUS) 1
2 Michael COMPTON (AUS) 2
3 Jordan MAKIN (AUS) 3
4 Zac WEST (AUS) 4
5 Caleb ARMIT (NZL) 5
6 Gustavo CORREA NASCIMENTO (BRA) 6
7 Stefan ELLIOTT-SHIRCORE (AUS) 7
8 Nik PLETIKOS (SLO) 8
9 Rhett GOWANS (AUS) 9
Source: Roger McMillan/Laser 2020 Media; US Team