Please select your home edition
Edition
upffront 728x90

Sail for Gold - Early end for Paralympic sailors + Video

by Jo Grindley on 9 Jun 2012
Alexandera Rickham and Niki Birrell, (GBR) racing in the Skud class onEdition © http://www.onEdition.com

As athletes departed Skandia Sail for Gold on Thursday afternoon, the storm was growing to its peak and overnight, it blasted Weymouth and Portland with winds in excess of 50 knots. Waves broke over the famous Chesil Bank, the rain poured down and the venue was cleared in case of flooding. What a welcome to the British summer!


By Friday morning the wind had not abated calling an early end to the Paralympic regatta. The other classes had longer to wait, but at 14:30 racing was called off for the day for everyone. The silver fleets and those that didn’t make the gold fleet cut for the medal race joined the Paralympians in packing up. Tomorrow, the top ten in each Olympic class will race for gold, silver and bronze.

The Paralympic regatta was always due to finish on Friday; all three classes were completed with six races and one discard. In the Skud, the British four-time world champions of Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell dominated with a string of five consecutive wins, to take the gold medal with a five point advantage from the Qingdao bronze medallists, John McRoberts and Stacie Louttit. The 2008 silver medallist Daniel Fitzgibbon and his new crew, Liesl Tesch took the bronze, another three points behind.

The British Skud duo had never won the Skandia Sail for Gold regatta, Niki Birrell commented, 'It feels fantastic to finish the regatta with a gold medal here in Weymouth and Portland. We came here wanting to win this event and we have done so, that’s great! Obviously we want to win the Paralympics in September so the overall result here wasn’t as important as the Games, but it’s still great to have won!'

In the Sonar’s it was another British team taking gold – John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas took the win from the Dutch trio, Udo Hessels, Mischa Rossen and Marcel van de Veen. There were just two points in it, with Canadians, Bruce Millar, Logan Campbell and Scott Lutes in third, seven points adrift of the Dutch.


Steve Thomas commented, 'I was quite disappointed actually that racing got cancelled, it would’ve been good to get more practice in before the Games. We had an average start to the regatta but we improved on the second day and we wanted to continue with that through the week. It was a pretty tough competition, all the guys here are going to be at the Games, it was a strong fleet, everyone sailed well.'

Mischa Rossen, from the Netherlands Sonar, reflected on the week, 'Well, it’s been a very wet week but we had a lot of different winds which was good. We’re pleased with our second place finish but a bit disappointed, we really wanted to get out and try and beat the Brits today! We were only two points behind them so we did have a good chance, but we learnt a lot and we have a few things that we can take away and work on back home.'

Helena Lucas came desperately close to completing a remarkable British hat-trick in the Paralympic classes. Lucas had pulled up to tie-level with the Netherlands Thierry Schmitter on Wednesday, but Schmitter had the advantage in the tie-break thanks to a first place score. And with no more racing, Lucas was left ruing a lost opportunity, but consoled by a silver medal. 'I’m obviously happy with the silver medal but at the same time a little frustrated as I was so close to the gold.'


Both Schmitter and Lucas may be pleased to have beaten gold and silver medallist Damien Seguin of France – one of Paralympic sailing’s most be-medalled individuals. Seguin had to settle for bronze on this occasion, four points behind the lead pair. Thierry Schmitter said, 'I’m thrilled to have won, it’s a shame that we only got to sail three days when we came here to sail five, but the weather you can’t control and the good thing is that I finally won this regatta. The lesson is that you have to be good at every race and not wait until the second half of the regatta to get into the lead.'

While most of the dock talk at the gale-bound Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy was about the upcoming Olympics, plans are already in place for a post-Olympic future. In 2013 Sail for Gold will be part of the European Sailing Federation’s new European Sailing Cup. The rest of the circuit will be Garda Olympic Week, Italy; Delta Lloyd Regatta, The Netherlands; Kieler Woche, Germany and Semaine Olympique Française, France, with Sail for Gold currently scheduled for the 10th to the 14th June 2013.


Looking ahead, there is lots of anticipation for the Medal Race day tomorrow, all the classes are still wide open, some are desperately tight, no-one is guaranteed gold and very few are guaranteed a medal. The action starts early for the Match Racing Women – the intention is for them to begin at 08:00 BST, and they have plenty of sailing to do; quarter finals, semis and finals still to be raced. The rest of the classes start at 10:00 with the Lasers up first.

Skandia Sail for Gold 2012 - Day Five Results

470 men – after eight races with one discard
1st AUS Mathew Belcher, Malcolm Page – 12 points
?
2nd GBR Luke Patience, Stuart Bithell – 15 points
3rd NZL Paul Snow-Hansen, Jason Saunders – 20points

470 women – after eight races with one discard ?

1st NZL Jo Aleh, Olivia Polly Powrie, 26 points?
2nd FRA Camille Lecointre, Mathilde Geron 35 points
3rd BRA Martine Grael, Isabel Swan 39 points

Finn – after seven races with one discard?
1st GBR Giles Scott – 7 points
?
2nd GBR Ben Ainslie – 19 points
?
3rd USA Zach Railey– 29.3 points

Star – after 6 races with 1 discard
?1st GBR Iain Percy, Andrew Simpson – 14 points
?2nd BRA Robert Scheidt, Bruno Prada – 15 points
?3rd IRL Peter O’Leary and David Burrows – 17 points

Laser – after 8 races with 1 discard
1st AUS Tom Slingsby – 24 points
2nd GER Philipp Buhl – 29 points
?
3rd Tonci Stipanovic – 35 points

Laser Radial – after 8 races with 1 discard ?1st CHN Lijia Xu – 21 points
2nd GBR Alison Young – 22 points
3rd FIN Sari Multala – 22 points

RS:X Men – after 8 races with 1 discard
1st FRA Julien Bontemps – 21 points
2nd NED Dorian Van Rijsselberge – 29 points
3rd GBR Nick Dempsey – 37 points
?





Sail for Gold website
Barz Optics - FloatersInSunSport - NZZhik Yachting 660x82

Related Articles

Sail for Gold Regatta - Team Sperry bring home host of medals
Skandia Sail for Gold regatta proved to be testing all week for athletes sailing at the Weymouth venue Skandia Sail for Gold regatta proved to be testing all week for athletes sailing at the Weymouth venue, with big winds and strong competition. Team Sperry Top-Sider athletes fought the conditions well to bring home a host of medals.
Posted on 12 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold - Giles Scott emerges victorious
In the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta, Giles Scott (GBR) has been a man on a mission all week and today was no different. In the 2012 Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta, Giles Scott (GBR) has been a man on a mission all week and today was no different. After winning five out of the seven opening series races, he wrapped up his most dominant week ever with a medal race win to take the victory by a sizeable 30 points. Ben Ainslie (GBR) finished the week in second despite capsizing and finishing last in the medal race
Posted on 10 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold Regatta – Medal race day overall + Video
Skandia Sail for Gold - One storm had passed, but another was brewing and the drama was just beginning on medal race day Skandia Sail for Gold - One storm had passed, but another was brewing and the drama was just beginning on medal race day. There were ten classes and thirty medals to decide, and not one of them was a certainty. After a week of tumultuous weather, the sun finally came out and the wind moderated to a perfect 15 knots for the opening races, building to a fresh 20-22 knots for the final medals.
Posted on 10 Jun 2012
ISAF Sailing World Cup - Women’s Match Racing title winner announced
Skandia Sail for Gold, the sixth of seven ISAF Sailing World Cup Regattas, is currently underway in Weymouth Skandia Sail for Gold, the sixth of seven ISAF Sailing World Cup Regattas, is currently underway in Weymouth, Great Britain. Today, Saturday 9th June, Anna Tunnicliffe, Molly Vandemoer and Debbie Capozzi (USA) have taken the Women’s Match Racing ISAF Sailing World Cup title.
Posted on 10 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold Day 5 - No action for US sailors + Video
Racing for day five of the Sail for Gold Regatta was cancelled due to continued high wind conditions over Weymouth Racing for day five of the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta was cancelled due to continued high wind conditions over Weymouth and Portland. As this was the final scheduled day of racing in the Paralympic classes, the results, to date, stand as final. For the Olympic classes, those in the top-10 will advance to Saturday’s medal races.
Posted on 9 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold – Skud 18 and Sonar World Cup Standings confirmed
Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta 2012 - The SKUD18 and Sonar World Cup Standings are confirmed. Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta 2012, the sixth of seven ISAF Sailing World Cup Regattas, is currently underway in Wemouth and Portland. With Paralympic racing cancelled on the final two days the SKUD18 and Sonar World Cup Standings are confirmed.
Posted on 9 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold - GBR's Giles Scott continues winning streak
The Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta has experienced some atrocious weather thus far, but it has now become worse. The 2012 Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta has experienced some atrocious weather thus far, but it has now become significantly worse. Day four in Weymouth saw stronger winds, torrential rain and limited visibility. However, the stand out performer this week Giles Scott (GBR) was unfazed by the conditions to notch up a fifth race win in the only race possible.
Posted on 8 Jun 2012
Skandia Sail for Gold Day 4 – Full on racing + Video
The weather battered Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta causing cancellations, postponements and some full on racing The weather battered Skandia Sail for Gold causing cancellations, postponements and some full on racing for those classes that did get out there. The racing schedule had already been moved forward to an early start to try to beat the inbound gale – forecast to arrive in the afternoon. But the weather system hit fast forward and by early morning it was already too windy for any Paralympic racing.
Posted on 8 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold Day 4 - US Sailing team continue to attack + Videos
On the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta fourth day gale-force winds put an early end to racing On the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta fourth day gale-force winds put an early end to racing but before racing was halted the race committee completed an abbreviated schedule for most classes, except for Paralympic and Star in which all racing was cancelled for the day.
Posted on 8 Jun 2012
Sail for Gold Regatta Day 3 - Consistent results for US Sailing team
On Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta third day the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider continued to accrue consistent result. On the Skandia Sail for Gold Regatta third day, an ISAF World Cup event, the US Sailing Team Sperry Top-Sider continued to accrue consistent results. Erik Storck and Trevor Moore advanced to the 49er gold round, while Stuart McNay and Graham Biehl did so in Men’s 470, while Zach Railey counted third overall in the Finn. Racing continues through June 9.
Posted on 7 Jun 2012