Two New Zealand Olympic representative crews improved already impressive performances in the 470 Worlds being sailed in Barcelona, Spain.
The 470 is used for the Mens and Womens Two handed event in the 2012 Olympics.
The New Zealand womens crew of Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie remain in third place overall after three days of racing . They did manage to squeeze up the points table somewhat, and now lie on equal points with the second placed boat, and are one point off the lead. Two French crews are above them on the points table. This is a very good result for the New Zealand crew who are still in their first cycle of Olympic competition, and in the final world championships before the Olympics. Aleh and Powrie won the fifth race and finished sixth in the final race. Their worst place is a 4th in the regatta which now allows a discard place when calculating points. The regatta, which is being contested by 54 crews, and is sailed in two fleets for the Qualification stages..
In the Mens Worlds, the young New Zealand crew of Paul Snow-Hansen and Jason Saunders lie in 9th overall. Their first race of the regatta has been corrected to a BFD (black flagged for being an early starter). From there on the young crew, also in their first cycle of Olympic competition in the 470 class. They finished second in the fifth race of the regatta which is still in its qualifying round, with the fleet sailing in three groups of 30. Their places since the start of the regatta have all been in the top seven, and now that the discard has been allowed, they were able to drop their maximum points scored in the first race, and jumped up the points table. 95 crews are competing in the regatta.
For the official site and results on the 470 Worlds click here
In the Finn class, being sailed at Falmouth, Cornwall, England 100nm along the coast from the Olympic regatta venue, Dan Slater had had a best place of 9th on the third day of racing, but backed that up with a 32nd which became his discard. He lies in 19th place overall, dropping two places on the point table. Conditions were very testing, with cold winds, stright off the North Atlantic, of up to 30kts and some very big shifts. These were very expensive for those who got on the wrong side of them, and paid huge dividends for those on the favoured side. One competitor lifted from 15th to the overall lead off the back of a single shift, before being sailed down by Ben Ainslie (GBR).
Racing is very close, with the boatspeed being very even through the fleet, a minor error was very expensive losing at least half a dozen places. The exception being Ben Ainslie (GBR) who seemed to be able to find another gear, at will and leads the regatta.
Sailors in the Mens Heavyweight Singlehander will be looking for a respite on the next race day, with the expectation of light winds.
Although New Zealand has qualified for the 2012 Olympics, a nomination for the position in the team has yet to be made. A second NZ sailor, Matt Coutts is in 36th with Rob Coutts 59th overall in the 95 strong fleet.
The regatta is being dominated by British sailors, who continue to hold the top three positions overall. For the full results click here
The Laser Radial World Championship has started in Boltenhagen, Germany. Sara Winther lies in 18th place overall scoring second and 22nd place finishes in the first two races. Ten more races are left to be sailed at the Laser Radial World Championships in which 133 boats are sailing in two fleets for the qualifying round. Winther was hit hard by her 22nd place - with others scoring more consistently in the diluted quality that are characteristic of the Qualifying rounds in any class. That place will be able to be dropped later in the regatta when discard performances are allowed. For full results click here
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8:18 PM Tue 15 May 2012GMT
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