Paralympics London 2012 - Dutch crew take Sonar lead

by IFDS 
Sonar racing on day 2 of the 2012 Paralympic Sailing Competition
David Staley - IFDS ©
The Dutch Sonar crew took the overall lead on the second day of racing in the London 2012 Paralympic Sailing Competition, after a late Australian disqualification forced them out of the overall lead.

Overnight leaders Colin Harrison, Jonathan Harris and Stephen Churm (AUS) failed to keep clear of Great Britain's John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Stephen Thomas (GBR) in Race 3 and were disqualified at 19:36 local time having finished third.

The Australians finished second in Race 4 and drop to the fourth.

Udo Hessels, Marcel van de Veen and Mischa Rossen (NED) were extremely impressive recording a second and a bullet in shifty Portland winds. They move from fifth to gold medal position on 13 points.

Race 3 winners Bruno Jourdren, Nicolas Vimont-Vicary and Eric Flageul (FRA) jump up one place to second overall following a sixth in Race 4. America's Paul Callahan, Tom Brown and Bradley Johnson move up to third following the Australian DSQ.

In Race 3 the Australians took an early lead but their decision to gybe straightaway at the first mark proved costly as they slipped down to eighth. Israel's Dror Cohen, Arnon Efrati and Benny Vexler took the lead but were unable to hold it as the French pounced to take the lead at the second mark.

The Australians recovered and worked their way up the fleet before an altercation with the British on the second windward. The Australians, on port tack, did not keep clear of the British team on starboard tack which resulted in their disqualification. Whilst the Dutch, who had sailed conservatively throughout the race, took a comfortable second place.

Race 4 developed into a fixed formation as the Dutch rounded the first mark in the lead followed by the Australians and America's Paul Callahan, Tom Brown and Bradley Johnson. The teams remained in their positions until the finish.

Top Five

1. Udo Hessels, Marcel van de Veen, Mischa Rossen (NED) - 13pts
2. Bruno Jourdren, Nicolas Vimont-Vicary and Eric Flageul (FRA) - 14pts
3. Paul Callahan, Tom Brown and Bradley Johnson (USA) - 20pts
4. Colin Harrison, Jonathan Harris and Stephen Churm (AUS) - 21pts
5. John Robertson, Hannah Stodel, Stephen Thomas (GBR) - 21pts

Disabled Sailing London 2012 Paralympic Website
http://www.sail-world.com/101648