|District 9 Regatta Report|| |
Sat Apr 21st, 2012 through Fri Apr 27th, 2012
Medal race photo by Philippe Laurenson/DDPT/FFVOILE.
| Video of day five's windy racing|
First and second day:
Three races were scheduled for the Stars but the second took nearly three hours to complete. After many general recalls, race 2 started but abandoned when the top mark started drifting. The Stars came back at 7pm. World #5, Richard Clarke and Tyler Bjorn(CAN) are in the lead with top three results. Olympic Champions Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson (GBR) are in second place with Xavier Rohart and Pierre-Alexis Ponsot (FRA) third.
After winning the first race, Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada (BRA) have retired from the event due to personal reasons.
Report by Richard Clarke:
The toughest call of the day was when to leave the dock, our race course is the closest to shore and in strong winds we get there pretty quick. Normally we like 45 minutes of prep time before the first race of the day to get a handle of what the winds are doing and confirming our setup but when conditions are on the edge of sailable our sails deteriorate rapidly so we try to cut it a bit finer. We left the dock at 815 and blasted downwind to the course arriving 25 minutes before the race, just about perfect.
The race started in a little over 20 kts and actually died a bit as it went on. We had a solid start a few boats down from the boat, played the shifts nicely up the first beat to round the first mark in 4th. Some solid sailing down the run found us in 2nd nipping at the tail of our British training partners Percy and Simpson. We both stretch away from the fleet making it a 2-boat battle for the win. On the second lap they stretched their lead but a crewing error on the last lap saw their lead evaporate to one boat length down the final run. We drew even with them approaching the finish but they caught a little more of the last puff and surged ahead to take the bullet.
Second place was enough to keep us in first place overall and in the leaders yellow bibs. Tomorrow (Wednesday) forecast is for lighter breeze and 3 races, looking forward to it.
After three races in the Star and two won by Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson (GBR), the British take the first position from Canadians Richard Clarke and Tyler Bjorn. The Swedish team of Loof/Salminen won the last race of the day to be in third overall.
"We had a mixed bag - I guess overall it was a good day." explains Percy. "We won two races but we should have won three - we certainly had the speed but it got very patchy and light in the last race and we just got a bit unlucky on the last run and a group of three boats got past us which made it a little bit frustrating to end like that. Overall, the good news is we're really fast upwind - we're struggling a little downwind which is unusual for us but we're really fast upwind and that's a nice place to be after a couple of years of not having that."
Fifth day: The Star race was a survival operation with 13 boats retiring from the race. Just one race as the conditions were too windy to continue on the water. Clarke/Bjorn broke the forestay on the way to the race course but saved the rig and managed to fix it, completing the race. Olympic Champions Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson (GBR), broke their mast while in the lead. They are still leading the regatta with Swedish Fredrik Loof and Max Salminen climbing to second and Canadians Richard Clarke and Tyler Bjorn third. The race was won by the French team of Xavier Rohart and Pierre-Alexis Ponsot in fourth position.
The forecast for the last day of racing in Hyères is for very strong winds that could compromise the medal races.
914 Bay Ridge Road, Suite 220
Annapolis, Maryland 21403 USA
Phone: +1 443 458 5733
Fax: +1 443 458 5735
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