Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships first week is drawing to a close with the Finn, Men's 470, Laser Radial and Women's RS:X fleet racing finishing tomorrow so it’s all on to determine who will advance into the medal races. Today two races were held in the Finn and Men’s 470 classes, while the Laser Radial sailors had a reserve day.
Saturday will see the final two races run for the series to determine the top 10 finishers who will advance to Sunday. In Women’s Match Racing Anna Tunnicliffe’s (Plantation, Fla.) Team Maclaren, Molly Vandemoer (Stanford, Calif.) and Debbie Capozzi (Bayport, N.Y.), advanced in Women’s Match Racing after defeating Mandy Mulder (NED) in the gold round.
Zach Railey (Clearwater, Fla.) moved up to the 10th overall position in the Finn class by scoring a 14-6. 'Today was better,' said Railey. 'I had better speed and felt good about both races.' Railey has a 20-point gap on Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.), who currently stands in 30th place overall.
Tunnicliffe’s Team Maclaren matched up against Mandy Mulder (NED) in the first of two gold round pairings after advancing out of Group B with the most wins in the round robin. Mulder advanced from Group A and took the first match off of Tunnicliffe. In the second match, Tunnicliffe went for a penalty against Mulder, and Mulder couldn’t shake it and make up the time. A win for Tunnicliffe. In the third and final match to decide who would advance to the semi final round, Mulder got a penalty in the prestart when she failed to keep clear of Tunnicliffe, on starboard. The two boats split tacks and the start, and when they rounded the first weather mark, Tunnicliffe was clear ahead of Mulder, who was still carrying a penalty.
At the leeward mark, Mulder carried Tunnicliffe out past the leeward mark and cleared her penalty. But Tunnicliffe lead back to the mark and rounded ahead, and held on to the finish line to take the crucial win.
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Genny Tulloch’s (Houston, Texas/Sausalito, Calif.) 'Team GetSailing' ended Group B’s round robin with seven wins, six losses and will go into the Women’s Match Racing repechage round.
Stu McNay (Boston, Mass.) and Graham Biehl (San Diego, Calif.) now find themselves in 11th overall. The Perth 2011 Race Committee staged today’s races on Centre Course, which is inside a U-shaped beach area, lined on both sides by a rock jetty.
'It was really cool to be on the media course and see the spectators in a grand stand,' said Biehl after racing.
'In the first race, we lost two boats on the final run and came 12th, and we were pretty happy with that. Then, in the next race, we had about seven or eight general recalls. We got lost with the wind and fell back; it was not a very good race for us. We still have two races tomorrow and we’ll try and do well and make the medal race.'
The Men’s 470 class will hold two final races on Saturday. 'It’s tough racing,' said Biehl. 'There are easily 10-20 teams who could win a race. We’ll try to get two good races.'
On Thursday, December 8, the daily TV show followed Laser Radial race six. Watch Paige Railey and USSTAG Olympic Coach Luther Carpenter talk about racing, and then watch the TV cameras follow Paige as she takes off at the starting line here
The Star, along with Men’s RS:X, Laser, Women’s 470 and 49er classes, race during the second week of this event.
To follow the live blog from event organizers and link to live tracking, please visit the event website
. For class results click here
. US Sailing Team website