Qatar Optimist Cup sailors enjoyed the good winds and Race Officers managed to complete four more races today, day four. According to schedule, the fourth day was a spare day; however Race Officers made it racing day to complete the pending races because of low wind on days one and two.
Excellent sailing conditions made competition very interesting. Good starts and upward speed made some of the leaders of previous days more comfortable in their lead positions. Over all a very satisfactory schedule of racing.
The local sailors from Qatar, after the experience of close battling during yesterday’s team racing, tuned their boats while waiting for the launch flag. This team is looking forward to upcoming 2014 events in Qatar.
Sail the Gulf, which takes place in February, is the biggest international sailing event in Qatar. Also the first Continental Kite surfing competition will take place in November, which should attract some of the world’s top kiters.
Meanwhile, the weather was more promising today with four races scheduled and the athletes set off right after the launch signal to test their speeds against rivals.
The first signal was at 10.20 with the majority of the fleet heading to the port side of the course. Okyanus Arikan from Turkey had a great start and headed to the right hand side. At the first mark, she managed to lead over second placed Walter Wahlroos from Finland a few meters behind. On the reach Arikan kept her lead but the Finn made up distance looking for any mistake from her to attack.
The boat to boat battle continued on the downwind leg with Wahlroos taking the advantage halfway down and then leading around the downwind mark.
Meanwhile Rasim Yasar from Turkey and Marsha Shahrin from Singapore had their own private battle. After a slow start, they hauled in several boats on the reach and the downwind leg.
But Okyanus Arikan did her best and covered the lost meters from Walter Wahlroos with good tactics and great speed on the final upwind. Finally she won the race…
Yasar and Shahrin fought their way around the course and finally dissevered their place in the top ten.
3-4 races are scheduled for the first day of 2014 depending on the weather, at the penultimate day of racing of the Qatar Optimist Cup. Until then Happy New Year!
Standings after eight races on day four is as follows:
1st - TUR 1281 RASIM YASAR
2nd - TUR 3501 OKYANUS ARIKAN
3rd - SIN 4475 Marsha Shahrin
4th - ALG 2015 Fares Abdelfettah
5th - NED 3112 Florine Bramervaer
6th - IND 1151 Navyn Prabhakar
7th - SUI 1685 Nicolas Rolaz
8th - SUI 1594 Luca Schaefer
9th - FIN 958 Walter Wahlroos
10th - ALG 2016 Mohammed Kebaili
by Mike Pateniotis
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11:07 PM Tue 31 Dec 2013GMT
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