At the ISAF Sailing World Cup Mallorca, with medal race berths on the line, US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider 470 athletes rose to the challenge on day five. Facing exclusion from the medal race, and with their backs against the wall, the US Men's 470 team of Stu McNay (Providence, R.I) and David Hughes (Miami, Fla.) achieved their best performance of the event in Friday's final race.
2014 ISAF Sailing World Cup Mallorca, day 5 - US Sailing Team
With most of the talent-laden 470 gold fleet vying for a start near the race committee boat, McNay and Hughes chose to start on the unfavored but much less crowded 'pin' end of the starting line. The gamble paid off, as strong pressure filled in on the left side of the racecourse, allowing the veteran pair to achieve, and then successfully defend, a second place position. Locked in a 3-way tie on points for the 10th and final medal race berth, McNay and Hughes won the spot by virtue of their victory over the Finnish and French teams in the final race.
In the Women's 470, Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.) sought to defend their place in the top 10 entering the day. After a sixth place finish in the first race, the pair looked to be in a strong position to cruise into the medal race, but a tough downwind leg in the second race added 17 points to their scoreline, and the points between positions 3-11 overall were suddenly quite close. Matching the clutch performance shown by McNay and Hughes, Haeger and Provancha decisively secured their fifth position overall with a third place finish in the final race.
'Today we really wanted to focus on getting a grip on the challenging conditions,' said Haeger. 'We still didn't sail our best, but we put ourselves in a good spot heading into the medal race tomorrow.'
US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider Finn athlete Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif) came into Friday in 11th overall, and ready to fight for a spot in the medal race, but unfortunately never got the chance. Lightening breezes in the late afternoon, when the Finn gold fleet attempted to start, prevented any races from being completed.
Notable US Overall Results, Day five:
470 Men (78 boats): 10th overall, Stuart McNay (Providence, R.I.) and David Hughes (Miami, Fla.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
(No racing on day four)
470 Women (47 boats): Fifth overall, Annie Haeger (East Troy, Wisc.) and Briana Provancha (San Diego, Calif.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
(No racing on day four)
49er (79 boats):
- 32nd overall, Brad Funk (Ft. Lauderdale, Fla.) and Trevor Burd (Marblehead, Mass.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
- 39th overall, Thomas Barrows (St. Thomas, USVI) and Joe Morris (Annapolis, Md.), US Sailing Development Team
(No racing for 49er silver fleet on day four)
49erFX (50 boats): 19th overall, Paris Henken (Coronado, Calif.) and Helena Scutt (Kirkland, Wash.), US Sailing Development Team
Finn (92 boats): 11th overall, Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
Laser (144 boats): 22nd overall, Charlie Buckingham (Newport Beach, Calif.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
Nacra 17 (73 boats): 17th overall, Sarah Newberry (Miami, Fla.) and John Casey (Longwood, Fla.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
RS:X Women (56 boards): 32nd overall, Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.), US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider
Click here for full results
US Sailing Team website