Please select your home edition
Cyclops 2020 - SmartlinkNano - LEADERBOARD

2021 Finn Gold Cup Day 4: Maloney and Junior run the show on penultimate day

by Robert Deaves 11 May 13:31 PDT 8-12 May 2021

New Zealand's Andy Maloney has extended his lead at the 2021 Finn Gold Cup in Porto, Portugal, to take a five-point lead into the final day on Wednesday, with three races possible. Zsombor Berecz, the 2018 champion, from Hungary, moves up to second, while defending champion Josh Junior, also from New Zealand, climbs to third.

Race wins went to Brazil's Jorge Zarif, in the very light first race, before Nenad Bugarin, from Croatia, and Junior won the next two races in winds of up to 16 knots.

After no racing for two days, everyone was happy to get racing again and what a day it was. It was actually a day of three thirds, with a very light opening race of 6-8 knots, followed by clearing skies and a slightly tougher race of 12-14 knots, before finally clouding over and picking up to 14-16 knots in the final race. The one constant though was the shifting wind, which kept the sailors on their toes and the race teams busy repositioning marks for almost every leg.

Britain's Giles Scott led round the top from the middle left in Race 4 from Ioannis Mitakis, from Greece and Brazil's Jorge Zarif. Zarif, the 2013 World Champion took the lead on the second upwind to lead down to the finish, as the soft breeze finally started to build.

Milan Vujasinovic, from Croatia, was fastest to the top mark in Race 5, but was soon surrounded by Kiwis, who passed him downwind. Junior led round the second top mark, but Bugarin found better pressure on the left on the final downwind to move into the lead and take the win, while Maloney moved up to third.

The last race of the day was again all about the left, with many boats overstanding the lay line as the top mark was difficult to see in the huge swell. The Kiwis dominated again, but France's Fabian Pic got the first beat right to round with a nice lead from 2018 Swedish World Champion, Max Salminen. By the gate Junior was in the lead, but he went too far left on the final beat, while eagle eyed Maloney got the lay line spot on. Maloney got there first only to touch the mark as he rounded. After turns Junior was back in the lead and both stretched out to the finish, while Estonia's Deniss Karpak sailed a great race for third.

Junior said, "It was a pretty nice day. The breeze settled in from the south-west, and we ended up with pretty epic conditions. Still big waves with a chop on top. It was a lot of fun."

"In the first race it was really hard to see the pressure. I think the left was where the pressure was, and there were some big phases and some big patches that were really hard to see. I was in tenth and then just lost it. It was a pretty hard race."

On his and Maloney's performance over the next two races, "I think we are going well, but still plenty to work on. But I am getting tired very quickly so I wish I could last a little bit longer."

In the final race, "No one really realized where the top mark was and Andy was first to realize that and managed to pass me and round just ahead of me, but unfortunately he hit it. He had to do a turn and then it was all on.'"

He laughs, "I didn't want him to beat me so I went a bit harder than I have for a while, and just managed to keep him behind me. It was cool to win a race, that's for sure."

Bugarin had the best day of anyone in the fleet with a 5,1,7 to keep him in contention for the final Olympic place on offer this week. "It was tough racing today. We had very hard conditions especially in the first race. It was quite tricky and then in the second race the wind increased. It was hard work all the way, but I managed to put everything together quite well and am very happy with the day."

The key moment came on the last downwind in Race 5. "I rounded just behind Josh and was having good downwinds today, so I managed to pass him on the last run, so that was very pleasing."

Maloney and Junior are sailing their first major regatta for 15 months, after time out for the America's Cup and SailGP, so their performance is particularly impressive, as well as worrying for everyone else as they prepare for the Olympics in just over two month's time. In contrast, Berecz has won back to back European titles.

The Toyko 2020 European Continental qualifier is heading for a nail biting conclusion with four sailors inside the top 10. Spain's Joan Cardona is fourth, but just six points ahead of Croatia's Nenad Bugarin, while the European bronze medalist, Nils Theuninck from Switzerland, is in ninth place, a further 17 points back. However it is a long way from being over.

Three races are possible on Wednesday and the forecast indicates a good day of sailing is on the cards. Both Maloney and Junior have heavier discards than Berecz, but with three races, the championship is still wide open. Racing is scheduled to commence at 11.00 local time.

Results after Day 4: (top ten)

1 NZL 61 Andy Maloney 18pts
2 HUN 40 Zsombor Berecz 23pts
3 NZL 24 Josh Junior 28pts
4 ESP 26 Joan Cardona 29pts
5 CRO 10 Nenad Bugarin 35pts
6 GBR 41 Giles Scott 43pts
7 USA 91 Luke Muller 44pts
8 ESP 17 Pablo Guitián Sarria 46pts
9 SUI 1 Nils Theuninck 52pts
10 GRE 77 Ioannis Mitakis 56pts

Full results here:

Related Articles

Gregg Morton wins Finn NA Masters Championship
The top three boats were all within two points of each other The Finn fleet has been extremely active in San Diego over the past two weeks with the San Diego Yacht Club hosting the Pacific Coast Championship (September 4-5) and most recently the Finn North American Masters Championship (September 10-12). Posted on 13 Sep
2021 Finn European Masters - Overall
Akos Lukats wins in Hungary Akos Lukats has won the 2021 Finn European Masters at the Tihanyi Hajós Egylet in Tihany, Hungary, after no more races were possible on the final day. Bas De Waal, from The Netherlands, takes second with Taras Havrysh, from Ukraine, third. Posted on 11 Sep
2021 Finn European Masters - Day 3
Three races, three winners and a new leader The new Hungarian National Champion, Akos Lukats, has taken the lead on the penultimate day of the 2021 Finn European Masters at Tihanyi Hajós Egylet in Tihany, Hungary. Bas De Waal, from The Netherlands, is back up to second. Posted on 10 Sep
2021 Finn European Masters - Day 2
Zdenek Gebhart maintains lead on Balaton Zdenek Gebhart, from the Czech Republic, continues to lead the Finn European Masters at the Tihanyi Hajós Egylet in Tihany, Hungary after two more races on Thursday. Posted on 9 Sep
2021 Finn European Masters - Day 1
Racing opens in 'paradise' sailing conditions at Tihanyi Hajós Egylet, Hungary The largest ever Finn European Masters opened at the Tihanyi Hajós Egylet, Hungary, on Wednesday in 'paradise' sailing conditions. After two races Zdenek Gebhart, from Czech Republic, leads Bas de Waal and Cees Scheurwater, from The Netherlands. Posted on 9 Sep
Three Lost (and Great) Wise Men
In many definitions of greatness, these three sailors tick most of the boxes With each loss, those links to the golden era of our past get weaker, which makes the passing of three greats of our sport in little more than a few weeks an even sadder summer for our sport. Posted on 3 Sep
Mike Milner on Team Canada's sailing at Tokyo 2020
David Schmidt checks in with the team's high-performance director I checked in with Mike Milner, Sail Canada's high-performance director, via email, to debrief Team Canada's sailing performances at this summer's XXXII Olympiad and to discuss the team's course back to the Olympic sailing podium. Posted on 1 Sep
Tokyo2020 - Some historic images from Enoshima
For those still keen for an Olympic sailing fix, here's some new images from our photo library For those still keen for an Olympic sailing fix, here's some new images from Sail-World's photo library from Tokyo2020, plus a couple of short stories about the historical significance of the images and sailors. Posted on 1 Sep
Paris2024: Antipodean re-think required
Tokyo2020 proved to be a game of snakes and ladders for the 17 countries who divvied up 30 medals When the medal table was added up, Tokyo2020 proved to be the proverbial game of snakes and ladders for the 17 countries who divvied up the 30 medals. Nine European nations increased their medal haul from Rio. Oceania was the biggest loser. Posted on 31 Aug
Former IOC President Jacques Rogge passes away
The sailor competed in three editions of the Olympic Games in the Finn class It is with great sadness that the International Olympic Committee (IOC) announces the passing of former IOC President Count Jacques Rogge. He was 79 years old. Posted on 29 Aug
Doyle Sails 2020 - Redefining Boundaries 728x90 BOTTOMArmstrong-Suptonic-728x90-2 BOTTOMZhik 2021 Choice of Champions FOOTER