Once the rain cleared leaving an overcast day, another two races of the FESPIC Games Sailing Competition were sailed today in Port Dickson. Light breezes and a sloppy sea remaining after the morning’s strong wind made for very challenging conditions.
With seven races now completed, sailors discard their worst result. Scores have become very close in three of the four divisions being sailed.
Jovin Tan (SIN) has closed within 1 point Duncan MacGregor (AUS) in the Access 2.3 division thanks to consistent 2-2 placings today and being able to drop a 4th place from the first race of the series. MacGregor went 1-3 today, but the final two races will be crucial for the young Australian. Al Mustakin Matrin (MAS) holds 3rd overall and is another 3 points behind Tan.
Joanne Toh (SIN) scored 2-1 today and remains 5 points clear of Rachael Cox (AUS) who sailed to an impressive win in the first race of the day. Cox seems to have consolidated her 2nd position with Sabrina Safri (MAS) only managing a 3-4 in today’s difficult conditions to be a further 5 points behind.
In the Men’s Liberty division, the lead of Mustafa Junell (MAS) has been cut to just 2 points. The combination of Junell’s 5th place in the first race of the day with Alson Tumbagahan (PHI) going 2-2 and discarding his DSQ from the first race of the series has closed the gap considerably. Karim Abdul (SIN) took a win in the first of the day and could well have consolidated his second place position from yesterday but was OCS in Race 7. He now has 4 points to make up with only 2 races yet to sail.
Ding Zhi Yun (CHN) regained a slim lead in the Womens Liberty division today after discarding her OCS from Day 2. Ding is tied on points with Desiree Lim (SIN) but has 2 more 1st places. The experienced Lim also had the opportunity to build a gap on the Chinese girl, but was OCS in the first race of the day. Pamela Murray (AUS) is 6 points behind the leading pair, but has a 4 point buffer over Cherrie Pinpin (PHI) in 4th.
Chairman of the International Jury, Noel Allen (AUS), commented, 'Competitors in this event have quite varied levels of sailing skills, but the leaders in each division are very competent'.
'All the sailors have been very well behaved, taking alternative penalties on the water and there have been very few protests', he said.
'The venue, and the Malaysian hospitality for sailors and officials, has been wonderful', said Allen.
It is expected that racing will be completed on Wednesday November 29, although a reserve day is available on the 30th in case of poor weather.
Results are available from the FESPIC Games Website: http://www.fespickl06.com.my/rs2006/bm/sa/schedule.aspx
The FESPIC Games are a Regional Games for athletes with a disability. Ten nations are represented in the sailing competition organized by the Malaysian Yachting Association (MYA) in conjunction with the International Association for Disabled sailing (IFDS). This is the first time that sailing has been included as a sport in the FESPIC Games and the first IFDS Event to have been conducted in Asia.