The 28th edition of the Delta Lloyd Regatta has given Australian Krystal Weir hope that she might be able to take part in the London Olympics this summer. In Medemblik, where some of the top competitors did not attend, Weir emerged victorious in the Laser Radial Class during the fifth World Cup race of the season.
Weir started the final medal race with a comfortable lead over the competition. 'That made it a lot easier. The pressure was already partly off. I hope it’s enough to get me to London 2012. The Australian sailing association has yet to decide. I hope that this victory will convince the association.' Weir surpassed the Croatian Tina Mihelic (second) and the French Mathilde de Kerangat on the leaderboard.
The Delta Lloyd Regatta produced two victories for the home crowd. Rutger van Schaardenburg was the strongest competitor in the Laser Class. The 24-year-old sailor started the final medal race as the favourite and won. He trumped the Frenchman Jean-Baptiste Bernaz (second) and the Dutchman Roelof Bouwmeester (third) on the leaderboard. Van Schaardenburg’s win also secured him a place in the Olympics. 'Finishing this competition in first place, it doesn’t get better than that,' said Van Schaardenburg.
The Finn Class produced a victory for the American Caleb Paine, who also won the final medal race. In the leaderboard, he stayed ahead of the Swedish Bjorn Allansson (second) and the Russian Aleksey Selinakov. Paine will miss the Olympics. His compatriot Zach Railey qualified in the Finn Class.
'I am already focussing on the Olympics in Rio de Janeiro (2016). This is a great victory, despite the fact that not all top competitors were present. I’m still really pleased to have this competition on my list of achievements.'
Surprisingly, the 470 Class was won by the Irish Ger Owens and Scott Flanigan. They benefited from a false start by the New Zealand duo Paul Snow-Hansen and Jason Saunders in the last race. This caused them to fall to second place on the leaderboard. Owens and Flanigan recently qualified for the Olympics at the World Championship in Barcelona. 'We came to Medemblik to have fun. It wasn’t all about winning, so this is a nice surprise and a great moment in the run-up to London 2012,' said Owens.
The Italian Flavia Tartaglini also gave a surprising performance on the last day. She started the medal race in the RS:X Class at number three on the leaderboard. She won the last race and to her great joy found that the Norwegian Jannicke Stalstrom and Hayley Chan from Hong Kong scored a lot lower, so that Tartaglini left the water as the winner.
The Australian Jessica Crisp even pulled into second place, and Chan finished third. 'My motivation was very low at the start of the week, but this is brilliant. I am really happy with this victory. RS:X will be removed from the Olympic sailing programme. That’s a real shame, because I love this discipline,' said the Italian winner.
The final victory for the men’s windsurfing (RS:X) was already established on Friday. The Israeli Shahar Zubari was already secure before the medal race. The final race was won by Frenchman Louis Benoit Hug, who came second on the leaderboard. The French team of Bruno Jourdren secured the win in the Sonar Class (Paralympic).