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28 February 2014, 09:27 am
Bragging Rights And Qualification Spots Up For Grabs At Byte CII North Americans
US Sailing Center Martin County plays host
US Sailing Center Martin County plays host

Byte CII North American & Caribbean Continental Qualification Championships
Florida, USA

Twenty eight competitors from 14 countries are racing at the Byte CII North American Championship being held out of US Sailing Center Martin County.
North American bragging rights and Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Games spots are up for grabs at the continental qualifier.

Henry Marshall from the United States entered the event as a heavy favourite after his second place finish at the 2013 World Championships and he did not disappoint, winning both races. Having split time with his Laser Radial over the past year, Henry has grown to love the CII.

"The technical aspects of the CII has made it a great platform to transition from my Opti to other boats," said Henry. "I really enjoy that the CII has more controls than the Laser and has taught me to use the traveler and adjustable battens in unison with the carbon rig to maximize boat speed."

Marshall secured an American Nanjing 2014 spot at the 2013 Worlds so qualification pressure is off. Four Boys places are there for the taking with plenty of race action remaining.

Marshall's training partner Ceci Wollmann from Bermuda is leading the way for the girls. She notched two 12th place finishes in challenging conditions. "The racing was very tight and little mistakes were difficult to recover from," said Wollmann. She sails out of the Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club in Bermuda and also splits time in her Laser Radial. Ceci credits the CII for helping her "build strength and refine technique" for how she moves in other boats.

Wollman secured a Bermudan Nanjing 2014 spot at the 2013 Worlds as did Celeste Lugtmeijer of Domincan Republic who trails her by three places. Like the boys fleet, four Nanjing 2014 spots are available in the girls fleet.

The first race saw 8 knots across the course with the breeze freshening to 14 knots for the second race.

Rounding out the top 5 are Pablo Bertran (CAY), Benn Smith (BER), Rhone Kirby (ANT) and Peter Dill (BER).

Rounding out the top 5 women are Celeste Lugtmeijer (DOM), Abigail Affoo (TRI), Florence Allan (CAY) and Paula Pelayo (MEX).

Bob Adam
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