Please select your home edition
Edition
Barz Optics - Floaters

Paralympics London 2012 - Lucas moves into pole position on day 3

by RYA on 4 Sep 2012
Helena Lucas, 2.4mR David Staley - IFDS ©
At the London 2012 Paralympic Sailing Competition, two awesome race victories propelled Helena Lucas into gold medal position in the 2.4 Metre one-person keelboat class at the halfway point. Redhill-born Lucas holds a nine-point advantage over nearest rival Heiko Kroger (GER) as her back-to-back race victories, coupled with the fact that the sailors have now completed five races and can eliminate their worst score of the series, saw her manoeuvre into pole position at the head of the fleet with five races to come.

Triple World Championship medallist Lucas, who has lived in Portland in preparation for this event, made the most of the light breezes in the harbour today.

But she insists she had a valuable lesson in taking nothing for granted reinforced at this summer’s Olympics when the Star team of Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson saw a gold medal – and a seven-point lead – disappear in a crushing final race flash.

Lucas said: 'I couldn’t have asked for more than that today, I’m just really, really pleased. Getting the bullet in the first race was pretty cool and the second race it was a case of keeping it chilled and getting a good start.

'But I’m absolutely not thinking about where that has left me. I’ve managed to get a nine point lead having done six races so with five races to go it would be quite easy to lose that nine point lead. I’m certainly not getting carried away.

'You look at what happened to Perce and Bart at the Olympics, when they led the whole regatta. Anything can happen. You can easily have a bad day or something goes wrong. It is great to have a bit of a cushion at the moment but I’m fully aware that that can get eroded very quickly.'

Lucas didn’t have the best start in the first race of the day, heading towards the first mark in 12th, but she nailed the approach to round that mark in first and she rapidly sprinted into a 23 second lead and continued to extend that throughout the rest of the race to win by over half a minute.

Her patience came to the fore in the second race as she rounded mark one in fifth before gradually picking her way through the fleet to head the pack by mark three, again keeping her composure to the finish line to make it 100 per cent for the day.

Lucas added: 'What I can take from today is great confidence that I’m fast in these conditions. If I don’t go round the mark in the top three, as long as I’m in the top five I know I’m quick enough to pick people off. We will see what happens come Thursday but I’ll be keeping everything in perspective and just keep doing what I’m doing.'

The first Paralympic sailing event took place as demonstration sport at Atlanta 1996 in the Sonar boat (plus reserve). The British crew of Andy Cassell, Kevin Curtis, Tony Downs and Ian Harrison won gold. But a Paralympic medal has eluded Britain since sailing joined the full Paralympic Games programme at Sydney 2000.

The London 2012 Paralympic Sailing Regatta runs from Saturday 1st September to Thursday 6th September.

Two races per day are scheduled for each class from first to 5th September, with one race for each class on the final day (6th September). Racing is scheduled to start at 11am RYA London 2012 website

Related Articles

Sailing in the Olympics beyond 2016 - A double Olympic medalist's view
Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. Gold and Bronze medalist and multiple world boardsailing/windsurfer champion, Bruce Kendall takes a look at what he believes Sailing needs to do to survive beyond the 2016 Olympics. A key driver is the signalled intention by the International Olympic Committee to select a basket of events that will be contested.
Posted on 29 Apr
From Olympic flag to Olympic Gold and maybe another
The Sydney Olympics was a Sailing double 470 Gold event for Australia. Having won the 420 World Championship in 2000, the feeder class to the 470, while still at school in Australia young Matt Belcher was given the honour of carrying the Olympic flag during the closing ceremony of the Sydney 2000 Olympics.
Posted on 28 Apr
The Road to Rio now 99 days short
The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win. The Road to Rio 2016 still has a few curves, bumps and potholes for teams battling to win in Hyeres, at some World championship events and Weymouth World Cup but for many crews: 'It's 106 miles to Chicago we got a full tank of gas, half a pack of cigarettes, it's dark and we're wearing sunglasses.' Whoops wrong movie.
Posted on 28 Apr
America's Cup - Oracle Racing win in Court but with collateral damage
Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Oracle Racing have had another claim against them by a former crew member dismissed. Mitchell focussed largely on the circumstances of the matter and introduced into the public arena some interesting documents to support his claims.
Posted on 23 Apr
An interview with Jake Beattie about the 2016 Race to Alaska
In 2014, Jake Beattie and a few friends envisioned the Race to Alaska. Now, it’s time this wild race’s second edition. In 2014, Jake Beattie-the executive director of the Northwest Maritime Center in Port Townsend, Washington, and a few friends hatched the bold idea of a human-powered race to Ketchikan, Alaska, took flight. They decided that their human-powered race would start in Port Townsend, Washington and run to Ketchikan, by way of the inside passage between Vancouver Island and British Columbia.
Posted on 14 Apr
Children of the Internet, Rio and Hong Kong
I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. I have four daughters, the youngest, who in her mid 20's is a true child of the Internet. The kind of conversations I have with her run along these lines.... In the olden days we did not have television until I left school and they had a thing called print magazines, that reported events between two weeks and four months after they happened. And her sceptical response... Hoh! Daddy, Hoh!
Posted on 14 Apr
Go fast girls - 49er FX sailors Paris Henken and Helena Scutt
Paris Henken and Helena Scutt will be representing the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics, which will be their first Olympiad. American’s Paris Henken (20) and Helena Scutt (23) recently won a berth to represent the USA at the Rio 2016 Olympics in the high-performance 49er FX skiff, a goal that the team has been working on for almost three years. While this is their first Games, writing them off as Olympic newbies would require ignoring their recent results and their strong teamwork.
Posted on 13 Apr
World Sailing Cup V3 - A Dead Rat in a Shoe or Spring Daffodils?
While a host of major sailing events go from strength to strength, the Sailing World Cup has very major issues. Last night my Irish better half was sitting beside me on the sofa watching an Australian version of the popular TV Cooking Program My Kitchen Rules on a tablet with her headphones while I was watching Diehard II for the seventeenth time (it’s a boy thing) on TV. She suddenly spluttered and laughed, took off her headphones and motioned for me to mute Diehard. (Seriously!!)
Posted on 9 Apr
Volvo Ocean Race appoints stadium racing pioneer as new CEO
Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Sail-World forecast the appointment of Mark Turner as Volvo Ocean Race CEO a month ago. We profiled Turner at that time. Today his appointment has been confirmed.
Posted on 31 Mar
Large spectator fleet heading north for boat watching season
I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase, but it is insanely apt and hilarious all at the same time, however. I’m absolutely not going to lay claim to the phrase. It is insanely apt and hilarious, all at the same time, however. Well then, boat watching season is definitely upon us once more. The whales will soon be gathering again off the coast of Queensland to observe all manner of racing and cruising craft as they head North for a Winter in the sun.
Posted on 29 Mar
Barz Optics - Kids rangeNaiad/Oracle SupplierKilwell - 1