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49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 fleets at Ready Steady Tokyo - Day 4

by 49er & Nacra 17 Sailing 20 Aug 2019 07:46 PDT 15-22 August 2019
Ready Steady Tokyo, day 4 © Jesus Renedo / Sailing Energy / World Sailing

Another day of racing and another style of breeze for the Tokyo2020 Olympic Test event in Enoshima, Japan. In a much more stable and predictable sea breeze the Nacra17 leaderboard tightened up around the top five teams as we head into tomorrow's double points medal race.

Italian's Ruggero Tita and Caterina Banti and Argentina's Santiago Lange & Cecilia Carranza Seroli both recorded two respectable scores but deep finishes outside of the top ten allowed the chasing pack to close the gap.

The British Sailing Team arguably had the best day on the water out of the potential podium placing teams, with John Gimson and Anna Burnet and Ben Saxton & Nicola Boniface both finishing the day with one win and 13 points apiece, moving them into second and fifth respectively.

Rio 2016 silver medallists Jason Waterhouse & Lisa Darmanin from Australia moved to within two points of the podium with a 2-3-9 scoreline, almost matching the consistent performance of the British teams.

Today's top-scoring team was Lin Ea Cenholt and Christian Peter Lubeck from Denmark, while France's Quentin Delapierre and Manon Audinet notched up their first race win of the regatta.

The implications of the results from Ready Steady Tokyo should not be overlooked. Out of the top five boats, only Lange and Saroli are the stand out performer in their national squad for Argentina and will more than likely have their Tokyo 2020 tickets booked well in advance.

For the British Sailing Team, things are not so clear cut. Ben Saxton and Nicola Boniface won the recent 2019 European Championship in Weymouth, while John Gimson and Anna Burnet placed higher than Saxton and Boniface at the Princesa Sofia Trofia in Palma early in the season. With Gimson and Burnet currently ahead on the rankings at the Olympic venue, and with this regatta sailed in the Olympic format with a smaller fleet over a fewer number of races, the British selectors will have a tough decision to make regarding who to send to the Games.

The Australian Sailing Team have things slightly easier than the British. Their top team over the past two Olympic cycles has been Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin, who medalled in Rio 2016. They won three events in a row in 2018-2019 before skipping the 2019 European Championships, putting the pressure on their countries "B-Squad" none other than multiple 49er Olympic medallist Nathan Outteridge, sailing with his sister Hayley. In their first international Nacra17 regatta, the sibling duo placed second at the 2018 Aarhus Worlds, ahead of Waterhouse and Darmanin, to really put the pressure on their more experienced Nacra teammates.

The top five placings will all be decided in tomorrow's medal race with only the top ten boats competing and double points being awarded. For Tita and Banti anything less than a second-place will open the door for Gimson and Burnet, with the following teams needing the Italians to slip to fifth or worse for the third to fifth-placed teams to be in with a shot at winning the regatta.

Official results: nacra17.org/events/2019-test-event

49er and 49erFX - Leaderboard compression On day 4

49er

Peter Burling and Blair Tuke from New Zealand continued their winning ways today and extended their lead on the second-placed Polish team of Lukasz Pryzybytek and Pawel Kolodzinski. In the more consistent and predictable sea breeze pattern, the Rio 2016 Gold Medallists and America's Cup winners showed that they are the form boat heading into the latter part of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic cycle.

Great Britain's Dylan Fletcher and Stuart Bithell won the day with a 3-3-1 scoreline to move into third overall and within striking distance of Pryzybytek and Kolodzinski. Benjamin Bildstein and David Hussl (AUT) recorded two top-five results but couldn't shake a deep result in the second race of the day, relinquishing themselves to fourth.

The German team of Justus Schmidt and Maximilian Boehme repeated their consistent day three results with a 6-5-6, enough to leapfrog the reigning World Champion's Sime and Mohivol Fantela of Croatia, who dropped to sixth overall and out of podium potential.

Heading into the double points medal race, Burling and Tuke can seal victory with a 7th. Pryzybytek and Kolodzinski will need to place in at least the top three to have any chance of overall victory, while the race for silver and bronze see's the top five all mathematically in with a chance.

49er Results

1st Peter Burling / Blair Tuke (NZL) 37pts
2nd Lukasz Pryzybytek / Pawel Kolodzinski (POL) 50pts
3rd Dylan Fletcher / Stuart Bithell (GBR) 58pts
4th Benjamin Bildstein / David Hussl (AUT) 63pts
5th Justus Schmidt / Maximillian Boehme (GER) 73pts

49erFX

The 49erFX podium at Ready Steady Tokyo is anyone's game, with the top four boats all within 10 points of each other and capable of claiming victory.

Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey (GBR) have known nothing but first place this week, leading from the first race of the regatta and continuing to hold their position throughout. Scoring their two worst placed finishes of the regatta today, they opened the door for Brazil's Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze to come within one point thanks to three results inside the top ten.

New Zealand's Alexander Maloney and Molly Meech also put in a good performance but a 14th in the final race of the day kept them six points arrears of Grael & Kunze. Helene Næss and Marie Rønningen (NOR) & Tamara Echegoyen and Paula Barcelo (ESP) kept their podium hopes alive with consistent top 8 finishes throughout the day.

Race wins went to French pairing Lili Sebesi and Albane Dubois, and the Dutch team of Annemiek Bekkering and Annette Duetz, who recorded two 1sts and a 10th.

The double points medal race scheduled for 1330 local time tomorrow will see the top ten boats battle it out on Enoshima's inner racecourse. Mathematically, the top four boats can all win the regatta and the top five can podium.

The British team needs to beat Grael & Kunze to stay ahead of the Brazilians overall but must place no worse than 4th if they want to stay ahead of the Kiwis. As can often happen in high-pressure medal races, all teams will need to be on their toes and weighing up the risk versus rewards across the racecourse tomorrow if they want to walk away victorious.

49erFX Results

1st Charlotte Dobson / Saskia Tidey (GBR) 50pts
2nd Martine Grael / Kahena Kunze (BRA) 51pts
3rd Alexander Maloney / Molly Meech (NZL) 57pts
4th Helene Næss / Marie Rønningen (NOR) 60pts
5th Tamara Echegoyen / Paula Barcelo (ESP) 68pts

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