The RS:X World Championship got underway yesterday in Cadiz, Spain with Julie Bontemps (FRA) leading the way in the Men's fleet whilst there is a three way tie in the Women's.
The men went out into a building breeze for a 12:00 start with the wind blowing between 8 - 18 knots with big holes and shifts. It was the orange group who started first and Shahar Zubari (ISR) who led on the first upwind and all the way down to the bottom of the outside loop. Nick Dempsey (GBR) was close behind in second with Dorian van Rijsselberge (NED) in hot pursuit.
But it was Bontemnps (FRA) who got back at the end. He blasted into the lead at the top of the second upwind and went on to take the gun and, truth be told, was the most consistent racer on the day posting a fifth in the second and another bullet in the third.
Over in the white group, Nimrod Mashiah (ISR) took the first race followed by a fifth and a sixth. The 2012 RS:X European Vice Champion, Byron Kokalanis (GRE) won the next two races and now occupies second place overall on the same points as Toni Wilhelm (GER).
When the men came ashore they were instructed to put their equipment in the new high performance centre equipment store under lock and key. The Levante is coming in tomorrow and survival conditions are scheduled so the women's fleet will be tested to say the least having enjoyed the best of conditions today.
Lee Korzits (ISR), Zofia Klepacka (POL) and Blanca Manchon (ESP) are all tied on five points at the top. Manchon won the first race in the blue group then followed up with two second places. Korzits kicked off with a third and then pressed her advantage home by firing in two bullets which is exactly what Zofia Klepacka (POL) did over in the yellow group. No one over there could match her consistency not even Marina Alabau [ESP] who went 5-2-5.
It's the women who go out first tomorrow, Friday, to start at 12:00. If yesterday is anything to go by, they may get a race or two in before the wind really pipes up for the guys who will not race before 14:30. It's going to be a 'big' day. Everyone will have Saturday to recover before racing resumes on Sunday in the finals.
Men Top 5
1. FRA6 Julien Bontemps 7.0
2. GRE8 Byron Kokalanis 10.0
3. GER3 Toni Wilhem 10.0
4. ISR21 Nimrod Mashiah 11.0
5. NED8 Dorian van Rijsselberge 11.0
Women Top 5
1. ISR1111 Lee Korzits 5.0
2. POL8 Zofia Klepacka 5.0
3. ESP1 Blanca Manchon Dominguez 5.0
4. POL7 Maja Dziarnowska 11.0
5. UKR9 Olha Maslivets 11.0