Please select your home edition
Edition
upffront 728x90

Semaine Olympique Francaise - Aussies on top after four days + Video

by Craig Heydon on 26 Apr 2012
Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen on day four in Hyeres © Jean-Marie Liot /DPPI/FFV
After four days of racing at the Semaine Olympique Francaise, Australian sailors sit at the top of the leader board in four classes. Laser sailor Tom Slingsby and 49er crew Nathan Outteridge and Iain Jensen took the lead in their respective classes on Wednesday while 470 sailors Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page and Skud 18 pair Daniel Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch remain at the top of their fleets.

After three days of strong winds, sailors were greeted with lighter conditions on Wednesday morning, keeping the majority of fleets on shore until the breeze picked up in the middle of the day.

Tom Slingsby started the day third overall in the Laser class, with the four-time World Champion continuing his consistent start to the regatta, with a pair of second place finishes moving him into the lead.

Slingsby hasn’t finished outside the top three in any of the eight races so far in Hyeres and takes a two point lead into the penultimate day of racing, with fellow Australian Tom Burton just five points behind in fifth overall following a seventh and a fourth.

'It’s been so close all week so it was good to finally get some points separation today,' said Slingsby. 'I had two seconds today and it was a real drag race to the right in both races, I was lucky in race one as I had a bad start and had to tack out to the right anyway and then in race two I got to the right when I wanted.

'I probably led both races but wasn’t extending away when out it front so I need to work on that a bit but it was still a good day,' he said. 'Again the racing was really close, I had a solid day and didn’t sail a drop which was a good thing, one or two guys sailed a bad one and a good one and a couple of them had two good ones so it’s all very tight with just a couple of points in it.'

Outteridge and Jensen started the first day of 49er gold fleet racing fifth overall with the Australian winning races when it counted, picking up two wins, a seventh and a fourth to move into the lead, tied on points with the French pair of Manu Dyen and Stephane Christidis.

'We had a nice day with two bullets and two other results in the top seven,' said Outteridge. 'It was much lighter than we’ve had all week and we sailed pretty well. We got a bit lucky in the last one and pulled back from almost last with a nice left hand shift to get into fifth at the top mark which was good for us.'

This is the first time that the pair has competed in Hyeres together with the regatta an important tune up before the 2012 49er World Championships in Croatia next month.

Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page continue to lead the way in the 470 men’s with a fourth and an 11th from Wednesday’s two races giving them a four point lead overall.

'In race one we did quite well and got a nice shift to the right, it was really fickle and nobody had any real idea where to go, you just had to use the opportunity in front of you and hope for the best a bit, things went our way and we finished fourth,' said Belcher. 'We found ourselves pretty deep in race two but fought our way back from about 25th or worse at one point to finish 11th which was fantastic.'

Page said that the pair is happy with where they are three months out from the London 2012 Olympic Games.

'The focus is not always on the results, we’re just looking at our performances and certain key points and really focusing on that,' said Page. 'Results wise that broken rig hurt us but that’s life, you’ve got to take it on the chin and battle on, taken in perspective it’s all about how we develop ourselves and work towards the big one in three months’ time.'

Daniel Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch finished with the perfect scorecard on Wednesday, with two wins from two starts in the Skud 18 class.

The pair, who was last week named to represent Australia at the London 2012 Paralympic Games, is two points ahead of the reigning World Champions from Great Britain.

The Skud fleet spent most of the day on the water, with one race after a two and a half hour delay and then a second later in the afternoon, with Fitzgibbon and Tesch coming from behind to beat the British by just a few boat lengths, taking the lead close to the finish line.

Krystal Weir had a tough day’s racing but remains in a strong position, fourth overall and just four points off the lead. Weir finished with a 21st and a 13th in the lighter conditions.

Australia’s Women’s Match Racing crew of Olivia Price, Nina Curtis and Lucinda Whitty had a mixed day, finishing the round robin with eight wins and eight losses.

The trio finished their day on a high, winning the final two races but with a number of other crews still to complete the round robin it is unlikely that the Australians will progress to the quarter-finals unless other results go their way.

In the Laser class West Australian Matthew Wearn is well and truly in the mix in 15th overall after a 25th and a ninth, ahead of Jared West in 20th, Ryan Palk in 47th, James Burman in 60th, Ki-Raphael Sulkowski in 64th, Klade Hauschildt in 93rd and Ashley Brunning in 97th.

Brendan Casey is currently 19th in the Finn class with the Queenslander currently in a protest hearing regarding incidents on the water during racing.

Caitlin Elks is 45th in the Laser Radial fleet, ahead of Alexandra South in 75th. In the RS:X men’s Luke Baillie is 23rd, Patrick Vos 33rd and Jimmy Levy 49th.

Paul McKenzie and Philip Toth are 15th in the Star class after a 16th, 14th and seventh.



Semaine Olympique Francaise website
Australian Sailing Team website
T Clewring One Designupffront 660x82InSunSport - NZ

Related Articles

Gladwell's Line - Does the America's Cup really need a Star Chamber?
The first meeting of the three-man America's Cup Arbitration Panel is believed to have taken place in London The first meeting of the three-man America's Cup Arbitration Panel is believed to have taken place in London in the past week or so. Officially the date hasn't been publicly announced. The venue hasn't been publicly named, and the parties have appeared before a Panel that is publicly nameless.
Posted on 23 Jul
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on Emirates Team NZ's road to Bermuda
Part 2 of the interview with Emirates Team NZ skipper Glenn Ashby. In this part of the interview we look at what is going to happen once Emirates Team NZ get their 'AC49.5' sailing in Auckland, and how the campaign may shape up before they leave for Bermuda. Ashby wouldn’t be drawn on whether Team New Zealand had started their AC50 build, with July being the usual start of what is usually a five-month build and commissioning period for an end of December launch.
Posted on 10 Jul
America's Cup - Glenn Ashby on Emirates Team NZ's new AC49.5
Sail-World talks with Emirates Team NZ skipper, Glenn Ashby on what is different about the team's new test boat Just under 11 months out from the 35th America’s Cup, Team New Zealand does not seem to be in its customary place at the front of the starting grid to be the first to launch their Challenger, or are they? Although they will be one of the last of the six teams to launch an AC45 Surrogate, Emirates Team New Zealand may have stolen a march with a boat that is as close as you can get to an AC50.
Posted on 9 Jul
Gladwell's Line - Emirates Team NZ launches shadow AC50
Emirates Team NZ took a late but significant step along the road to the 35th America's Cup, with the launch of their AC4 Emirates Team NZ took a late but significant step along the road to the 35th America's Cup, with the launch of their AC45S - as the test boats are called in the Protocol which governs the 2017 event. The bloated Protocol, which now runs to 83 pages of legalese, is restrictive on the size of boat that can be built as a test platform but doesn't restrict the number that can be built.
Posted on 22 Jun
Platino recovery - Family confirms that tug has made rendezvous
Reports in social media say a salvage tug has made a rendezvous with the Platino earlier than expected. Reports in social media by family and friends of Nick Saull, the crew member killed during a catastrophic incident abroad the 66ft yacht Platino say the salvage tug which left on Tuesday night has made the rendezvous earlier than expected. The Facebook report says the tug, Sea Pelican, arrived on Friday morning, the weather in the area has eased and with a more favorable outlook.
Posted on 16 Jun
Rio 2016 - Double Olympic medallist on the delights of Guanabara Bay
Olympic Gold and Bronze medallist Bruce Kendall updates on the 2016 Olympic venue at Guanabara Bay. Olympic Gold and Bronze medallist, and now a windsurfer coach, Bruce Kendall has made several trips to the 2016 Olympic venue at Guanabara Bay. He updates on the pollution issue which is clearly not going to be resolved in a couple of months, and also shares his views on the venue from a sailing competition perspective.
Posted on 14 Jun
America's Cup - Artemis win Chicago as Team Japan wins two races
Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series got three races away on Super Sunday. After losing the first official day of racing due to light winds and the non-arrival of the onshore breeze, Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series got three races away on Super Sunday. From a racing perspective this was probably the best day of racing yet in the series which counts for points in the Qualifying Series of the America's Cup in 11 months time.
Posted on 12 Jun
America's Cup - Emirates TNZ NZ and Oracle capsize in Chicago Practice
Emirates Team New Zealand and Oracle Team USA capsized in Practice Racing at the Louis Vuitton ACWS Chicago There was action aplenty on Practice Day at Louis Vuitton America's Cup World Series Chicago, after Emirates Team New Zealand capsized in their match with Oracle Team USA, and then Oracle Team USA capsized later in the day. Team NZ's skipper skipper Glenn Ashby performed some impressive acrobatics ejecting from the AC45 capsize, without injury.
Posted on 11 Jun
America's Cup - Changes proposed to control future Cup options
Changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing according to the Daily Telegraph (UK) News that changes are being mooted to put the America's Cup on a longer-term footing is being floated in the Daily Telegraph (UK) by the British Challenger, Land Rover BAR. According to the Telegraph, some of the teams in the 2017 America's Cup are keen to lock-in parameters which would bind successive holders of the a style and frequency for the next America's Cup Match.
Posted on 8 Jun
America's Cup - AC50 construction uncovered - Part 2 - Wings and Costs
Second part of a two-part series looking at the AC50 construction progress at Core Builders Composites Second part of a two-part series looking at the construction progress at Core Builders Composites, and features of the AC50 class which will be used in the 35th America's Cup in Bermuda. Tim Smyth takes us on a tour of the CBC facility in Warkworth, and hour's drive north of Auckland. Where several AC50's, components and wingsails are under construction or have already been shipped to the teams.
Posted on 5 Jun