Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie have claimed a podium finish at the 2009 Women’s 470 European Championships just concluded in Lake Traunsee, Austria.
The New Zealand pair, campaigning this year in the Olympic double-handed class for the first time have finished 3rd in the regatta dogged by cancelled racing. The regatta is an important event on the Olympic high performance circuit.
In unusual circumstances organisers were facing an incomplete regatta if racing were not possible on the final day in Austria. While strong winds prevailed over the initial days of the seven day series conditions swung to the other extreme and racing was abandoned on days five and six meaning race officials were under pressure to finalise the titles with at least one race last night.
Aleh and Powrie were lying 3rd overall in the fleet of 39 at the conclusion of the qualifying series, and after the light wind cancellations they remained in a strong position for a podium finish going into last night’s final race. The kiwi duo finished in 14th place and held their overall standing for a podium result at this regatta.
For Aleh and Powrie this is one better than their 4th placing at last month’s ISAF World Cup Series Delta Lloyd Regatta in the Netherlands. The top results mark an impressive opening bid in the 470 Olympic campaign of these two girls who together claimed the 420 Class Women’s World Championship title in 2008.
The title of 2009 470 Women’s European Champions went to Giulia Conti and Giovanna Micol of Italy while Ai Kondo and Wakako Tabata of Japan were 2nd.
In the Men’s 470 European Championship also being contested at Lake Traunsee New Zealand’s only representatives Geoff Woolley and Mark Overington placed 41st overall in the fleet of 82 boats.