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Perfect start to 470 Europeans for Belcher and Ryan

by Australian Sailing Team 10 May 00:27 PDT 6-14 May 2019
470 European Championships 2019 © Gerolamo Acquarone

The gulf of Sanremo lived up to its fame on day one (May 9) of the 470 Europeans, delivering perfect conditions and a perfect scorecard to Mat Belcher and Will Ryan who posted three bullets and stormed into first on the men's leaderboard.

Blue skies, warm sun and an afternoon easterly 15 knots plus welcomed competitors to the location widely regarded among the world's best. Fickle morning winds took a while to settle and two hours after the scheduled midday start time the international Race Committee fired the Europeans first signal for the women's fleet.

The first start of the two men's groups was under black flag and unfortunately several crews were disqualified before their series had begun. Australia's Rio 2016 silver medallists kept their noses clean and importantly, in front of the chasing pack.

Europeans are dominating the early women's pointscore with Nia Jerwood and Monique Devries (WA) the first non-Europeans, sitting 11th overall thanks to a brilliant third in race three.

Prior to racing Jerwood gave an insight into the pair's mindset: "Things have been going well for us in the lead up to this event. We've had a solid week of training and working hard with our training partners Chris and Josh to get up to speed and get to know the venue.

"Monique and I sailed our very first event together in Sanremo for the 420 Worlds back in 2016. Unfortunately it didn't go so well and we finished in silver fleet so we also have some redemption and unfinished business to take care of!

"The women are sailing in one fleet of 40 boats so we can expect some congestion and lots of tactical situations out on the racecourse. This is important event for us and a good result will really help our campaign towards the Tokyo 2020 Olympics."

The weather forecast for day two indicates south-westerlies 8-10 knots in the morning, increasing in the afternoon.

Australian Sailing Team Results

470 Men's (70 boats)

1st Mat Belcher and Will Ryan 1, 1, (1) = 2 points
27th Chris Charlwood and Josh Dawson 11, (18), 11 = 22 points

470 Women's (40 boats)

11th Nia Jerwood and Monique de Vries, 16, (18), 3 = 19 points

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