Here we are halfway through week one of Olympic Sailing at the 2012 Summer Games. Weymouth and Portland National Sailing academy, host venue for the Olympic sailing, has seen its fair share of drama unfold already.
London 2012 - Olympic Games Day 4 - CAN
Our Star sailors had a pretty brutal blow yesterday when they crossed the start early and failed to realize they needed to return to the start. The result was a gut wrenching fleet +1 score, 17 points. Laser medal hopeful Paul Goodison from the UK’s sailing team was in severe pain yesterday having reported major back pains though he was on the course today. Also from the UK team come the low results from superstar Finn sailor Ben Ainslie, whose norm is to take a bullet every race, but was recorded this week as low as 12th. Ben has moved his was up in the fleet to be sitting nicely at second overall currently, albeit 10 points behind leader Jonas Hogh-Christensen. With four-six races remaining and the 470 men and women’s fleet yet to hit the water there is still a substantial amount of racing left.
470 men are on the docket for their first race tomorrow as well as the return of the Star and Finn fleets from their well deserved lay day. Lasers and Radials are off for the day to recover, recuperate and recollect while the RS:X men and women fleets hang in for one more day before taking Friday off.
On the Canadian front it was the RS:X men and women that are really grabbing our attention. Zac Plavsic is hungry for top of the fleet results, however he is so eager to perform that he’s jumping the gun across the start. Forced to do penalty turns and claw back to the front again today Zac posted a 12 and a 6 moving him to seventh overall. His plan is to keep focusing on smart starts and the rest will play out well for this former Olympic contender.
RS:X women's sailor Nikola Girke also posted two tops ten’s today, taking a 10 and a 6 to move her to ninth overall. As Nikola puts it - 'It was quite shifty out there today with big puffs. I recovered well from a few bad shifts and remained consistent throughout both races. I am pleased that I am still in the hunt!'
Yesterday Nikolas board malfunctioned via a crack in her fin, which at the time she assumed was weeds causing much distraction and slowing her down. As a result she went for redress because all the board equipment is provided by the organizing committee. After several hours of deliberation, they dismissed her case because there wasn't enough damage to warrant a redress however she did receive new equipment for today.
Our Laser sailors Danielle Dube and David Wright had a rough day. Malfunctions and collisions were the name of the game and it didn’t pay off very well for either. A problem with mainsheet feeding was Danielle’s enemy, not to mention catching the wrong shift on every side of the course. 'Very shifty out there today and I couldn’t seem to pick the right shift to save my life. The shift would last the whole beat so I would pick the opposite side on the next beat and the wind would shift again. Not my lucky day.' She posted a 31 and a 32 to place her in 29th overall. David Wright had a collision in his second race, moving him significantly farther away from the lead than we’d all like. He nailed a 14 and a 24 to his board, putting him in 29th overall.
Our 49er boys Hunter Lowden and Gordon Cook also had a spell of bad luck today when their halyard malfunctioned limiting their ability to hoist their spinnaker. They battled through it and finished ninth in their first race and 17th in their second. The guys are sitting at 14th over all after race 6.Unlike other fleets the 49ers have a series of 15 races, so there’s still plenty of time to move ahead in the fleet.
Stay tuned for more action as this Olympic Regatta continues to unfold. As always check into the Canadian Sailing Team on Facebook for the quickest results, the CST website for you’re in depth reports and ISAF’s Olympic coverage for all the results and action.
Keep cheering Canada, and SAIL FAST