The first day of the Yngling World Championship and Olympic Qualification Regatta started in light 5-7 knot breezes and heavy rain on the Southern side of the Bay of Biscay in the Spanish Port of Santander.
With four Olympic qualification places at stake, as well as being the team trials for many of the nations involved, the starts were always going to be aggressive There was the one general recall before the fleet got cleanly away the second time.
It was Danish boat of Trine PALLUDAN
that got the best of the first beat, rounding the top mark three boat lengths ahead of Ulrike SCHUMANN
(GER). Sharon FERRIS
and Janneke HIN
were next to round. These four boats were quickly followed by the pack with the top ISAF ranked boat of Dorte JENSEN
(DEN) leading the chase.
As the wind began to increase a little on the run it also started to turn shifty, with boats losing out on the right hand side of the run. At the bottom mark it was Ferris who had made the most of the difficult conditions and had opened up a 10-boat length lead on Trine PALLUDAN.
(GBR), who had come to the Worlds having won the last regatta at Hyeres, was finding the conditions hard going and rounded the bottom mark in the late twenties. She would eventually finish 34.
The positions of the top four boats didn't change during the last two legs and it was Sharon FERRIS who held on to win from PALLUDAN just a boat length behind. SCHUMANN and JENSEN finished third and fourth respectively and the French team of Anne LE HELLEY,
Elodie LESAFFRE and Marion DEPLANQ finished in fifth.
Of the nations still trying to qualify for Athens, New Zealand came out on top, with the Canadian team of Lisa ROSS,
Deirdre CRAMPTON and Chantal LEGER finishing sixth placing them in a good position so far. The Dutch crew of Janneke HIN, Klaartje ZUIDERBAAN and Hanne BUIS finished in seventh and are also on good form to join the line up in Athens.
The second race took three general recalls before finally getting away under the black flag. Six boats were over identified as being OCS, but this did not matter as at the bottom mark the wind died and the Race Committee decided to abandon the race. The fleet waited for another hour in a constantly shifting and light breeze before all racing was abandoned for the day at 1600.
These Championships sees two new nations being represented for the first time ever. Teams from Colombia and Japan have made the trip to try and qualify for the Olympics and also to get a taste of Yngling sailing at its best.
Tomorrow sees two more races scheduled with the similar conditions forecast. Full results are available on the event website at the address below.
Top Ten After Day One
||Anne LE HELLEY