Please select your home edition
Edition
InSunSport - International - Endure

Olympics- Wadlow and Rast's 49er Medal Race

by US Sailing Media on 19 Aug 2008
Qingdao Olympic Regatta 2008. 49er Medal Race start. Guy Nowell © http://www.guynowell.com
Unfortunately for Chris and I our jib blocks ripped out at 7 minutes to the start. Chris spent some time jury rigging the blocks by removing the tail of the jib halyard and tying the blocks to the front of the boat. The jib halyard is super thin line so he doubled it over a few times. While he was working on the repair I was watching the clock and keeping our boat upright and close to the line. At this point it was 19 knots of wind, and 5ft waves.

We finished the repair at 1:20 to the start, tacked over, beam reached across the line, and set up at the committee boat. We then spent 30s calming ourselves, and getting ready. At the gun we had a great start. The jury rig didn't allow me to pull the jib in all the way, but it was close enough. We wanted the right, so we tacked shortly after the start. About 2 minutes into the race the jury rig broke.

Chris tried another repair. This broke again. We tried another. Didn't work. After about 10 minutes we gave up on using purchase and just led the jib directly from the clew to the cleat, so now it's led 1:1. The sheet load quadrupled with this and we were worried about blowing out the cleat, so we only pulled the jib in half way.

At this point we are a lap down, in a 3 lap race. We get to the windward mark right with AUT, AUS and ITA who are leading the race. In 49er lingo, we were 'lap traffic'. The run was exciting, but we survived. The jury rig had been made over the kite sheet so we could only use the kite on Starboard, but this wasn't a major issue. On the next lap we were slow, with our jib half luffing, but not too bad. AUT's rig broke on this beat, right in front of us.

The next downwind was our 2nd, and the last for the leaders. It was getting windier, and waves were considerably bigger. We survived the bear away, but the capsized on the first major wave after the set. We ripped out a foot strap and broke a tiller extension in the wipe out. Meanwhile all the lead boats capsized on the same downwind. ITA, AUS, GER and BRA all flipped within sight of us. At one point 7 of 10 boats were upside down.


From here we missed the action, but from what we understand ITA, AUS and GER all had multiple flips trying to get to the finish. ESP came from 5th place, only flipped once on the run, and won the race. GBR and BRA were also capsized on the run. BRA took the main down, and finished under jib alone. Onshore, 49er sailors where watching the race on TV, continually recalculating the scores with each capsize. For a moment ITA had the gold, only needing to make one jibe. They capsized. Then AUS only needed one jibe to win the Gold. Same results. Now GER. Same. It was incredible drama. Eventually on ESP's 2nd turn they made it.

For us, things didn't look good. All the boats we needed to beat in the race were finished, or about to. We were a lap down, damaged, and at some point we realized we wouldn't make the time limit (15 minutes). We were also pretty exhausted from dealing with the repairs and all the capsizes. We were unable to finish the race.

Other dramas included the FRA boat breaking their bow pole, and the DEN boat breaking their mast. The DEN boat broke their mast well before the start, and through an amazing act of sportsmanship, was greeted onshore by a rigged boat from Croatia. They jumped in the boat, and sailed the race, starting almost 4 minutes late. The rumor is that the boat didn't even have a kite rigged. The finished the race (last finisher in 7th). Finishing 7th got them the Gold Medal. If the they hadn't finished they wouldn't win any medal. That's how close the points are.



http://olympics.ussailing.org

Zhik ZKG 660x82Wildwind 2016 660x82Naiad/Oracle Supplier

Related Articles

Qingdao might spell the Future of Sailing
’The explosion of sailing in Asia is both a joyous and a sad time for this European dominated sport.’ As Kjell Borking, the Vice President of EUROSAF, the peak European sailing body commented today at the 2010 International Sailing Forum in Qingdao ‘’The explosion of sailing in Asia is both a joyous and a sad time for this European dominated sport.’
Posted on 22 Aug 2010
China’s Sailing Capital Qingdao builds on Olympic success
Qingdao, China is actively seeking to take advantage of its location, infrastructure and community and continues to expa Qingdao, China, the host of the 2008 Olympic Sailing regatta is actively seeking to take advantage of its location, infrastructure and community and continues to expand its sailing events.
Posted on 22 Aug 2010
Elliott 6 metre selected for 2012 Olympics
The ISAF Council followed its usual conservative approach today when it opted for the same classes The ISAF Council followed a conservative approach today when it opted for the same classes to contest the same events in the 2012 Olympic as they had done in the 2008 Olympics. The only addition is the introduction of the Elliott 6 metre in the Womens Match Racing event, which will make its debut at the 2012 Olympics.
Posted on 15 Nov 2008
Ainslie and Sensini win ISAF Rolex Sailor Awards
Ben Ainslie (GBR) and Alessandra Sensini (ITA) winners of the ISAF Rolex Sailor of the Year Awards Ben Ainslie (GBR) and Alessandra Sensini (ITA) have just been announced as the winners of the ISAF Rolex Sailor of the Year Awards at a dinner in Madrid, Spain
Posted on 12 Nov 2008
Not time to change Olympic windsurfer says Pryde
A proposal to switch windsurfing boards for 2012 Games from existing Neil Pryde RS:X to a new Formula board. At this weeks ISAF meeting amongst the agenda items is a proposal to switch windsurfing boards for the 2012 London Olympic Games from the existing Neil Pryde RS:X to a new Starboard built Formula board.
Posted on 3 Nov 2008
Tornado moots one design for 11th Olympic medal
discussions were underway within the IOC with regards to a submission submitted by Paul Henderson The structure of the Tornado class has gone through many changes over the past 11 months. The Tornado Class/Multihull community became to complacent believing that multihull was safe and would always be part of the Olympic program, this lead to a major shock to us all at the 2007 Annual ISAF meeting in November.
Posted on 21 Oct 2008
ISAF Working Party support NZ design for Olympics
ISAF working party supports Elliott 6m be chosen as the equipment for the 2012 Olympics in the new Womens Match Racing A Working Party from the International Sailing Federation has made a submission to the International Sailing Federation supporting the previous submission from Yachting New Zealand that the Elliott 6m be chosen as the equipment for the 2012 Olympics in the new Womens Match Racing Event.
Posted on 6 Oct 2008
Slingsby stumbled in Qingdao. What Happened?
Tom Slingsby was a gold medal favourite going into the Olympic regatta. Tom talks about what happened and the future. Australia's Laser sailor Tom Slingsby was the gold medal favourite going into the Olympic regatta. But he had a shocker, finishing 22nd overall. Now Tom talks about what happened and the road ahead.
Posted on 25 Sep 2008
Balboa Yacht Club welcomes Paralympic sailing hero
United Airlines delivered precious cargo to Orange County's John Wayne Airport this afternoon. United Airlines delivered precious cargo to Orange County's John Wayne Airport this afternoon. Over 100 Balboa Yacht Club members, friends and family welcomed home Paralympic Gold Medallist, Nick Scandone; his wife, Mary Kate; his loyal friend and coach, Mike Pinckney and his devoted brother, Vince (Rock).
Posted on 19 Sep 2008
If Everyone could have seen them dance .....
If everyone could have seen them dance like no one was watching Spending the last two weeks with the sailors, coaches, assistants, friends, families, care givers and International Association of Disabled Sailors (IFDS) officials during the 2008 Paralympics Sailing Regatta in Qingdao, China was the most rewarding experience of my career as a sailing journalist. These people are amazing!
Posted on 17 Sep 2008