sail-world.com
 
 
News Home Cruising Photo Gallery Video Gallery
Sail-World.com : London Olympics 2012 - Ainslie narrows the gap
London Olympics 2012 - Ainslie narrows the gap

'Ainalie (Finn) - London Olympics 2012'    Francois Richard ©    Click Here to view large photo

Ben Ainslie (GBR) returned to winning ways on day 4 of competition for the Finns at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition in Weymouth with a first and a third. He has now narrowed the gap on regatta leader Jonas Høgh-Christensen (DEN) to just three points.

Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (CRO) moved up to third. The second race of the day was won by Rafa Trujillo (ESP).


It was a big day out on Weymouth Bay South course with big winds, big waves and bigger stakes. For Ainslie it was crucial that he started to narrow the points gap and he did just that. Today was the day that he had to make his move on Høgh-Christensen before it was too late. The Brit was fast running out of races to reverse the points score and he came out looking more confident and dominant that at any time this week.

He owned the start of race seven, locking into the dangerous pin end position early and controlling it with perfection until the gun. The Dane was just to windward and just a bit back from the line, but his problem was the Polish boat that was ahead and on his wind. Piotr Kula (POL) was OCS, but he damaged Høgh-Christensen's start enough so that he had to tack to get clear air.

Ainslie controlled the left along with Rafa Trujillo (ESP) and Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) and they rounded the first mark in this order with Vasilij Zbogar (SLO) in fourth and then Høgh-Christensen.

With big wind and big waves the reach to the wing was a spray filled sleigh ride. The Dane slid into fourth, and then after rounding the mark dived low to get some separation from the leading bunch. Then disaster struck as he capsized on a big wave. He was up and sailing again in 30 seconds but looked clearly rattled as he rejoined the race in 15th.

At the front Ainslie and Postma were battling for supremacy downwind in the big conditions, rounding opposite gates. Postma briefly got in front of Ainslie at the next top mark but Ainslie soon passed him downwind to extend and win his first race of the week by some 20 seconds from Postma. Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (CRO) crossed in third with Tapio Nirkko (FIN) in fourth. Third overall Jonathan Lobert (FRA) was fifth.

Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (Finn) - London Olympics 2012 -  Francois Richard ©  

Høgh-Christensen was back up to sixth at the top mark but dropped two on the downwind to cross in eighth. Early performer Trujillo had gear problems downwind and dropped to 15th at the finish.

The British breathed a collective sign of relief. Ainslie had turned the corner and put a bullet on the scoreboard. More importantly for Ainslie, Høgh-Christensen now had to count his seventh from Monday so the points gap was down to just four.

Onto race eight and Høgh-Christensen was back on the offensive, winning the favoured pin end of the line, though he had Trujillo just to windward off him. Ainslie started slightly further up the line but was soon forced to tack off to find a lane. The fleet again favoured the left side with Ainslie heading furthest left when the leaders crossed back.
Round the top mark Trujillo led from Høgh-Christensen, Postma, Nirkko and Ainslie. The Brit went low on the reach and moved up to fourth and then also overtook Postma on the run. At the gate the top four boats rounded the same mark within 10 seconds of each other with a nice gap on the fleet.

Jonas Høgh-Christensen (Finn) - London Olympics 2012 -  Francois Richard ©  

Soon after the rounding Ainslie did a penalty turn and lost ground. Høgh-Christensen took a hitch to the right and tacked on Ainslie's wind. Again the fleet went all the way to the port layline. Trujillo held onto his lead to round ahead with Høgh-Christensen and Postma holding a small lead over Ainslie.

The final downwind to the finish was a thrilling battle. Høgh-Christensen immediately made inroads into Trujillo's lead while Ainslie tried to find a route past Postma so he could attack the Dane. But it was Postma who made the first move going wide and then crossing on front of Høgh-Christensen and Ainslie.

Round the last mark it was Trujillo and Postma with Ainslie just sliding round the mark ahead of Høgh-Christensen. Nothing else changed by the finish with the 2004 Silver medalist Trujillo winning the race from Postma. Ainslie had taken around 70 metres about off regatta leader Høgh-Christensen on the run to inflict his second victory over him in one day and further close the points gap.

After a third and seventh today Kljakovic Gaspic has moved up to thr bronze medal position. 'It was hard day, windy but a simple race, keeping left was important. For me wasn't easy but I pulled hard for such a result, and in the end I am happy. Tomorrow it will be all about keeping the game simple, sailing fast and pushing hard.'

Lobert, now down one place in fourth, said, 'It was a rough day. There was a lot of tension this morning. I was quite nervous. I was trying to manage it and in the first race I succeeded a little bit because I had some good downwinds and managed to finish fifth. In the second I had a terrible start and then it was just too hard to come back. So not so good a day for me. The wind was really up and down today, but the left side was still generally favoured. There is still everything to do. With two more races a lot can happen so we'll keep on pushing and we'll see tomorrow and I hope to be a bit more relaxed.'

Postma had his best day yet with two second places. 'The wind was quite up and down. Sometimes 10-12 knots sometimes up to 18 knots. Especially on the downwinds you had to really look. Sometimes some people would catch a gust and 50 metres ahead the boats wouldn't have it. It was really tricky.'

'In the first race I had a good start, sailed to the left side and it was a steady race. I had a fight with Ben. I passed him on the second upwind and he passed me on the last run on a gust. In the second race I had a bad start but on the upwind I caught a nice gust when I was more to the left and I caught up a lot. Then I caught up to second on the reach and had a good downwind.'

'The last downwind was good. In the last part I didn't make the right plan to pass Rafa. At first I went down and then I went up but missed one wave. But I passed Jonas very nicely.'

'Tomorrow I want to do better than today. I haven't showed everything I have yet. I have the feeling so I really want to push tomorrow.' Nervous? 'I don't feel nervous now, but tomorrow I might feel a bit nervous and I think that's fine.'

Dan Slater is still in with a chance at a medal, sitting in eighth place. 'It was not a very good day for me today. I had an all right first one but not a very good second one. It was just frustrating. We are sailing in three knots of current and a washing machine of waves so it's tough. It's a one way track. But I'm still alive.'

'They've done a fantastic job here. The facilities on shore and everything is just great. And the starts and race management have been fantastic. It's just a shame we are sailing so far away, several miles out on a one way track. Whatever order you start off from the pin is pretty well the order we have rounded the top mark in. PJ had a great day today and I just need a day like that tomorrow to get myself back into contention. I can definitely do it. My pace is pretty good. If it's a one way track you just have to fight for the pin and you actually have take a few risks in my position.'

A fourth and a fifth leaves Nirkko in seventh place just 14 points off the medals. 'In the first race I didn't get a very good start so I had to tack away behind the whole fleet, so I was on the wrong side and struggled on the first upwind. After that I eased the clutch and just let it go. The reach and the first downwind were good. Nothing much happened on the second upwind but the second downwind was excellent. I think I got better pressure and was a bit more on the inside inside.' Nirkko went from 11th to fourth on the run, after rounding the top mark 21st.

'In the second race I stared second boat from the pin. Jonas has trouble getting past the pin and I got slowed by it and then Rafa came rolling over both of us. But then I just eased the travelled and footed under them and banged the left corner and came back with good speed and rounded fifth and managed to keep that.'

'Tomorrow it's quite tight. I will try to close the gap to third. It looks like Jonas and Ben are gone but I believe there are still a couple of guys that could have a difficult day tomorrow, but I need to sail a good day. After tomorrow I want to be within reach of the bronze medal and I think it's possible.'

Høgh-Christensen's lead has dropped from 10 points to just three points but he remains optimistic. 'I got a good start but unfortunately the Polish guy started on top of me and he was over the line and that ruined my start. I wanted to go left and I had a good lane but I had to tack off because of the Polish and that ruined the first beat for me. I got up to fifth at the top mark and caught up with the front guys on the reach and then in one moment of not being on top of the boat, I flipped to windward. It was one of the expensive ones. Then there was a lot of catching up. I really pushed hard and caught up a lot so happy to get back to eighth.'

'In the second race I did what I wanted, and got the start I wanted at the right end and had a good lane. I didn't sail a good second run and lost PJ and Ben, which wasn't very good. It was down to speed and lack of pressure. Ben sat on me quite a lot so there were times when I didn't have much pressure. Then I had two bad waves.'

'Tomorrow I need to get two good races in, and do what we've done for the past four days. I think I’ve sailed well and done what I've wanted to do. I was a bit unlucky today.'

Was it nerves today? 'I don't think I was more nervous this morning that any other day. But you're always a bit nervous at the Olympics. We have a very detailed plan from when we wake up to when we go to bed and we've been following that plan and it seems to work and it takes a lot of the pressure off.'

Finn fleet - London Olympics 2012 -  Francois Richard ©   Click Here to view large photo

There is one more day of the opening series left before Sunday's double points non-discardable medal race. Today was proof, if we needed it, that it will be a fight all the way to the finish.

Ainslie was more aggressive today, appeared to be faster upwind, made fewer mistakes and was blisteringly fast downwind. He seems to have overcome the lacklustre performance of the first three days and refocussed on the job in hand. Høgh-Christensen by contrast made several mistakes and the capsize in race seven may hang over him in the days that remain. Two more opening series races remain and today's change in fortunes has set up a thrilling match between these two amazing sailors. We can't wait.

Races nine and ten are scheduled for 12.00 Friday, on Weymouth Bay South course.

Full results here


by Robert Deaves

  

Click on the FB Like link to post this story to your FB wall

http://www.sail-world.com/index.cfm?nid=100520

7:13 PM Thu 2 Aug 2012GMT


Click here for printer friendly version
Click here to send us feedback or comments about this story.

Click for further information on


Related News Stories:

03 Aug 2012  London Olympics 2012: RS:X - Alabau leads the way
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics 2012: 470 Men - Flying Nothe on day 5
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics 2012: Elliott 6M (WMR) - Aussies on fire in Weymouth
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics: Images of Weymouth - Womens Windsurfer at Mid-point
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics 2012: 49er - Brits excel on day 5
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics: Images of Weymouth - Ainslie marches on in Finns
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics - Day 5 images by Ingrid Abery
03 Aug 2012  London Olympics: Images of Weymouth - Star medals look decided
03 Aug 2012  London 2012 Olympics - Profitable day 5 for Team GBR
03 Aug 2012  London 2012 Olympics - Strong sailing from Team Ireland
MORE STORIES ...






News - USA and the World

Comanche’s owner, Jim Clark concedes that a Rolex Sydney Hobart isn’t the ideal first race for such a big, complex machine, but: 'I am married to an Australian, and I’ve seen the start of the Rolex Sydney Hobart a number of times. ... [more]  

Mount Gay Round Barbados Race Series: This event, which kick starts the Caribbean race season, is proving to be a huge attraction for overseas entries with over 20 already signed and more than 50 boats expected overall. One of the biggest draws is the Mount Gay Round Barbados Race (21 January), a 60 nautical mile ocean race round the island. There are currently 14 established records in this race. ... [more]  

Barcelona World Race: The challenges of racing as a duo, not just seeking to perform at the highest level over a period of 90 to 100 days but actually co-habiting in a small, confined space whilst also experiencing extremes of discomfort – wet, damp, tired, hot, cold, emotional and physical. Here Ken Way gives an insight into how he helps the relationship between the two skippers work. ... [more]  

St. Thomas, US Virgin Islands. Organizers of the St. Thomas International Regatta are proud to announce that Cruzan Rum and Presidente beer, distributed by Glazer’s Premier Distributors, LLC, will provide major sponsorship in support for the 2015 regatta. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Warwick Sherman never really wanted to do the Rolex Sydney Hobart, he’d done plenty of ocean racing, but bashing his way across Bass Strait to get to Tasmania just didn't grab him. Perversely, all that changed when he was diagnosed with cancer. ... [more]  

The second stage of the Soto 40 South American Tour is coming up next and will be held in Algarrobo, Chile from 24 - 31 January. More than eight yachts are expected to take part in the Chille Sailing Week, a competition noted for its level of competition and close racing, where success is characterized by consistency, precision and teamwork. ... [more]  

The Flying Dutchman, regarded as one of the finest and fastest one-design dinghy classes ever designed, will return to Sydney Harbour en masse when the Royal Sydney Yacht Squadron conducts the Australian and World championships, starting next week. ... [more]  

The International Moth Class isn't exactly a new sailing class, yet the learning curve would have to be one of the steepest out there. Moths have been on foils for almost 10 years, yet besides talking to fellow moth sailors, there isn't a lot of information out there to help you master the skills and techniques needed to fly ... [more]  

America's Cup: Full CAS report finds both ISAF and de Ridder at fault *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
The Decision of the Court for Arbitration of Sport over the suspension of Dutch sailor Dirk de Ridder has been circulated. The report, which was earlier reported in summary form as to the decision, confirms a 18month suspension on de Ridder, one of the Netherlands' top sailors ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Australia’s premier ocean race has always had an international flavour; Captain Illingworth, who started the whole Sydney Hobart thing was, after all, an Englishman. ... [more]  

An initiative by the SuperYacht Racing Association (SYRA) led to collaboration with the Offshore Racing Congress (ORC) and ultimately the creation of a new superyacht handicapping rule - the ORC SuperYacht Rule (ORCsy). ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Ocean sailors are daft; why else would you think it a good idea to take a modern ocean racing yacht around the world on her own bottom to compete in lots and lots of races, some thousands of miles long? ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - The island is off the NSW south coast, 155 nautical miles south of Sydney’s South Head and about 6 nm south-east of Narooma. Its lighthouse, built of granite quarried on the island, began operating in 1881. The island is a protected nature reserve. ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Hundreds of Australian sailors spend their lives trying to win the Tattersall’s Cup; year after year they declare in Hobart that this was their last Rolex Sydney Hobart - definitely - for sure. But 12 months later you spot them again at the Cruising Yacht Club of Australia, tinkering with their pride and joy and nervously eying off Boxing Day ... [more]  

America's Cup: Lawsuit against Oracle Racing lodged in San Francisco *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
In further legal fallout from the 34th America's Cup one of the New Zealand sailors named in an action bought by the International Sailing Federation has in turn lodged a lawsuit in a California Court against his former racing team, Oracle Racing Inc over boat fixing in America's Cup World Series ... [more]  

Antigua Sailing Week 2015 by Antigua Sailing Week
If you haven't been to Antigua Sailing Week for some years Antigua Sailing Week have a quick overview for you of what has changed and what makes it worth the journey along with information on bareboat and race charters, multihulls and challenges for 2015. ... [more]  

RORC Transatlantic Race: The three-man team on Sérénade was the final yacht to complete the inaugural race. Having spent over 18 days at sea, the crew were understandably tired but Denis Villotte, Alain Houchard and Pit Porta were smiling from ear to ear in Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina. A large welcoming party had gathered to greet them. ... [more]  

2017 J/80 World Championships: The Royal Southern Yacht Club (RSrnYC) has an active J/80 fleet and attracts many more of the class to its summer series of regattas run annually from May through to September, in addition to match racing J/80s in the annual Grade 2 Match Cup. ... [more]  

Spectacular fire on Sydney Harbour captured on video *Feature by Richard Gladwell, Sail-World.com/nz
Sydney sailing sports photographer, Beth Morley was on Sydney Harbour, capturing images of the Friday night racing, when a luxury launch caught fire nearby. I was out photographing the Ransa Sailing yacht race this evening when I saw smoke coming from the back of a large cruise boat around the back of Sow and Pigs (reef) area towards Middle Head. ... [more]  

Clipper Round the World: The award is in recognition of the way he directed his crew during a dramatic man overboard rescue in the harsh northern Pacific Ocean last March. The Rod Stephens Trophy for Outstanding Seamanship is an internationally renowned trophy awarded annually for an act of seamanship which significantly contributes to the safety of a yacht, or one or more individuals at sea. ... [more]  

OK Dinghy Worlds: Some sailors will even be in transit over the festive period, so thoughts of overindulgence will be a long way from their minds as they focus on the challenge ahead – overcoming the strong Australian team and preparing for the conditions on Port Phillip Bay. However, if the event is true to form - there will be overindulgence in competitive and fun racing. ... [more]  

The Decision of the Court for Arbitration of Sport over the suspension of Dutch sailor Dirk de Ridder has been circulated. The report, which was earlier reported in summary form as to the decision, confirms a 18month suspension on de Ridder, one of the Netherlands' top sailors ... [more]  

2014 Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - With the early weather outlook for next week’s Rolex Sydney Hobart Race indicating it will be a sometimes torrid all-round test over the 628 nautical miles, the highly experienced crew of race record holder Wild Oats XI is feeling comfortable but not over-confident. ... [more]  

Hanohano Outrigger Canoe Club, Huki Outrigger, and Hoven Vision present the 19th Annual Hanohano Huki Ocean Challenge to be held in Mission Bay, San Diego, Ca. on January 24th, 2015. ... [more]  

Photographer Andrea Francolini was on the water to provided this gallery of images of Comanche. ... [more]  

Images from Mauritius as the Team Vestas Wind recovery crew prepare to depart for the Cargados Carajos Shoals, over 200nm away. The team have acquired some salvage equipment and will live aboard a chartered boat and attempt to float the boat over the reef and into the lagoon. ... [more]  

The skipper of Mapfre, Iker Martinez will leave the Campos managed Volvo Ocean Race entry for the third Leg of the Volvo Ocean Race. The team cites a conflict between Martinez's Olympic commitments in the Nacra 17 and the Volvo Ocean Race, as the reason for the departure which the team says was a planned move. ... [more]  

Team Vestas Wind skipper Chris Nicholson (AUS) has flown back to a remote Indian Ocean reef to help oversee a complicated operation to retrieve his stranded boat after it was grounded there during Leg 2 of the Volvo Ocean Race nearly three weeks ago. ... [more]  

The America's Cup Competitor Forum, comprising the six teams registered for the 2017 America’s Cup, has appointed Iain Murray as Regatta Director. The appointment was tipped a month ago in Sail-World.com. Under the Protocol for the 35th America's Cup, the appointment has to be approved by the majority of the competitors. ... [more]  

Rolex Sydney Hobart Race: The intention to enter the fleet of twelve Clipper 70s in the 71st edition has just been confirmed by Clipper Race organisers. The RSHYR will form part of the biennial Clipper Race series for a second time. The round-the-world fleet created much interest in 2013 as amateur sailors from over 40 different nationalities competed as part of their 40,000 mile circumnavigation. ... [more]  

If you missed this week's edition of Adventures of a Sailor Girl, then hear the replay below. This week's show is the 34th. Sailing news in sixty seconds-ish (2:46). Sail Sydney: Josh McKnight (Moth, 9:43), Tom Spithill (Moth, 12:45), Olivia Price & Eliza Solly (FX, 15:24) Tom Burton (Laser, 23:20) James Wierzbowski (Extreme 40's, 32:08) and much more ... [more]  

RORC Transatlantic Race 2014: Isabelle Haudiquet was on the helm as the bright yellow hull blasted through the finish line. Having safely moored Bingo after 17 days at sea, the French crew enjoyed a cold beer dockside at Camper & Nicholsons Port Louis Marina. ... [more]  

Volvo Ocean Race: Chris Nicholson Interview - Part 3 - On the Atoll *Feature by Richard Gladwell/Sail-World.com/nz
Final part of a three part, 80 minute, interview with Team Vestas Wind skipper, Chris Nicholson on the wrecking of the Volvo Ocean Race yacht on an idyllic atoll in the South Indian Ocean during the night of November 29. In this part, Nicholson tell what happened once the crew stepped aboard the local coastguard boat just after dawn, and subsequent trips back to the wreck. ... [more]  

Bell's Beer Bayview Mackinac Race - Safety Requirements published
Int'l 14 World Championships - Defending champion expects tight racing
WWA Wake Park World Series - Daniel Grant and Aaron Gunn make history
US Sailing’s Rolex Yachtsman and Yachtswoman of the Year Awards
Sailing World Cup Melbourne: Highlights video from Port Philip
Bart’s Bash raises huge total for international sailing charity
Optim'X (FRA) completes RORC Transatlantic Race 2014
Perpetual Loyal unveils 1120 square metre A2 for Rolex Sydney Hobart
ISAF SWC Melbourne – Girls’ Day Out *Feature
Website for the 2015 Finn Gold Cup in Takapuna is launched
Great signed Limited Edition sailing books by Bob Fisher for Christmas
Clipper Race - Sir Robin Knox-Johnston to mentor young South African
IFDS Worlds 2014 New Video Memories - Halifax is just a click away!
McDougall + McConaghy Moth Worlds 2015 - Must see, seriously fun event
Volvo Ocean Race: Chris Nicholson Interview - Part 2 - On the Rocks *Feature
Successful St. Maarten Regatta Beach Clean-Up at Kim Sha Beach
US Sailing releases Rio 2016 Olympic Trials System
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - Oldies return
Volvo Ocean Race sets up independent inquiry into Vestas Wind disaster
Volvo Ocean Race: Team Brunel: sweet victory
RORC Transatlantic Race - Apollo 7 touch down   
2014 OK Dinghy Worlds Preview one - Last but not least   
Melges 24 Christmas Sprint Series - Christmas comes early for Red Mist   
Extreme Sailing Series 2014 Act 8 - Superb podium finish for Realteam   
Volvo Ocean Race: Chris Nicholson on the Team Vestas Wind disaster - 1 *Feature   
USA 4 Windsurfing campaign   
Rolex Sydney Hobart Yacht Race - One last modification to Wild Oats XI   
Sydney-Hobart: Wacky Races 2 - Frosty, Hoonigan and Wilbo *Feature   
RORC Transatlantic Race 2014 - Big adventure comes to an end   
ISAF World Sailing Rankings – 15 December 2014   
Comanche; Supermaxi Showdown VIDEO   
Miami Star Winter Series - Commodores Cup Final day   
2014/15 Audi Melges 20 Miami Winter Series - Jason Michas wins   
2014 RORC Transatlantic Race - Yacana crosses finish line   
2014 Extreme Sailing Series - Act 8 - Swiss team Alinghi wins   
Extreme Sailing Series: Images from Act 8 + Series' Highlights video   
Volvo Ocean Race: Dongfeng Race Team - Leg Two review   
Extreme Sailing Series: Alinghi crowned 2014 and Sydney champions   
Extreme Sailing Series -Sydney Land Rover recognises talent   
ISAF Sailing World Cup Melbourne - Medal Race Images   


For this week's complete news stories select    Last 7 Days
   Search All News
For last month's complete news stories select    Last 30 Days
   Archive News







Sail-World.com  


















Switch Default Region to:

Social Media

Asia

Australia

Canada

Europe

New Zealand

United Kingdom


http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/Twitter_logo_small.png http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/FaceBook-icon.png  http://www.sail-world.com/event_images/image/RSS-Icon.png

United States

Cruising Northern

Cruising Southern

MarineBusiness World

PowerBoat World

FishingBoating World

 

Contact

Commercial

News

Search

Contact Us

Advertisers Information

Submit news/events

Search Stories/Text

Feedback

Advertisers Directory

Newsletter Archive

Photo Gallery

 

Banner Advertising Details

Newsletter Subscribe

Video Gallery

Policies

 

 

 

Privacy Policy

 

 


Cookie Policy

 

 



This site and its contents are © Copyright TetraMedia and/or the original author, photographer etc. All Rights Reserved.  Photographs are copyright by law.  If you wish to use or buy a photograph contact the photographer directly.
XLXL NEW US
LocalAds   DE  ES  FR  IT