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Rain and wind delays keep sailors ashore in Miami at 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Day 4

by US Sailing Team 23 Jan 20:35 PST 19-25 January 2020
Pedro Pascual at the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami © Pedro Martinez / Sailing Energy / World Sailing

Today, sailors experienced the first rounds of extended postponements at the 2020 Hempel World Cup Series Miami. After long wind and rain delays on the water and ashore, only the Finns finished both scheduled races. The Men's Laser, Men's RS:X, and Women's RS:X fleets each finished one race. Despite the Race Committee's best efforts, the unstable breeze didn't allow for any races in the Laser Radial, Men's 470 or Women's 470 fleets.

Caleb Paine (San Diego, Calif.) continues to lead the Finn fleet. Continuing his incredibly consistent streak, he finished both races in first. In the eight total races, he has yet to finish below second place, allowing him to lead the fleet with 16 points between him and teammate, Luke Muller (Fort Pierce, Fla.), who is in second. Paine attributes most of his success this week to keeping focused on his own boat and not paying much mind to the fact that this event will play a role in the Finn U.S. athlete trials for the Tokyo 2020 Games.

Paine and Muller won't have much certainty over who will be the U.S. Finn representative in Tokyo until after the 2020 Finn Gold Cup. After the 2019 Men's RS:X World Championships, a similar dynamic exists between Pedro Pascual (West Palm Beach, Fla.) and Geronimo Nores (Miami Beach, Fla.). Today, Pascual and Nores finished their race in first and second, respectively. Both will hold the podium positions they established yesterday. Pascual is in first overall and Nores is in third.

Unlike the Finn and Men's RS:X sailors, Farrah Hall (Annapolis, Md.) is leading the Women's RS:X trials quite comfortably. This week, she continues to hang near the front of the pack. Hall finished today's race in seventh and stands third overall. Despite the less than ideal conditions, she's sure to appreciate the time on the water before the Games, "I'm really enjoying these last few months with the RS:X and through the Tokyo 2020 Games before I put all of my equipment in the museum." Hall is making the most of her last year campaigning in the RS:X but is looking forward to the new iQFoil class that has been selected as the windsurfing equipment for the Paris 2024 Games.

While the Women's 470s didn't race today, they are in the midst of what will likely be the closest race for the U.S. trials. While qualifying for Tokyo is certainly a priority for each of the three U.S. boats, they're not preoccupied with the stakes of the event.

US Sailing Team Women's 470 skipper, Atlantic Brugman (Winthrop, Mass.) is particularly proud of the progress all three of the boats have made. "We enjoy the challenge, they push us to get better," she said. "It's also nice to see that there's a lot of talent going for this spot. As a country with three teams that are all new to this boat, we're all working really hard and are making advances in a fleet of people who've been sailing 470s for a really long time." Regardless of the results at this event, the trials for all of the Olympic classes will conclude with the 2020 World Championships.

The final fleet to race today was the Men's Laser class. Among U.S. athletes, Malcolm Lamphere (Lake Forest, Ill.) is currently leading, standing in 14th overall.

Tomorrow, the racing is scheduled to resume at 11:00 a.m. (GMT-5). Both the Race Committee and the athletes have their fingers crossed for more stable wind to round out the final fleet races before medal races begin on Saturday.

Full results available here.

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