Day two dawned sunny and virtually breathless in Zadar, but with the promise of a thermal Nor-Westerly later in the day. The Women's fleet hit the water first with the 53 teams leaving in a building 6-knot breeze.
Yesterday was 'Pay day' for the women's fleet with three races planned that would leave just one race for the final day of qualification. It was the day that champions would step forward to the plate.
The first Women's race got off at 12.45 with Vesna DEKLEVA and Klara MAUCEC (SLO) making a conservative start but picking each shift consistently. After establishing a good lead on the first beat and run, the Slovenians covered the fleet on the left hand side of the course and stretched their lead to more than 40 seconds over Argentinian sailors Fernanda SESTO and Paula REINOSO from Jennifer PROVAN & Nikola GIRKE (CAN).
In the second Women's group, Alina GLOBE and Vivien KASSATZ of Germany registered their best result of the regatta so far followed closely by Russians Vladelina ILIENKO and Natalia GAPONOVICH. Conditions were testing with 8-12 knots but with readable shifts if you were on top of your game.
In the second and third races of the day on the women's course Therese TORGERSSON and Vendela ZACHRISSON (SWE) stepped forward. Taking two commanding leads for two wins, although Yaka YOSHISAKO & Mitsuko SATAKE (JPN) halved their lead in the last race of the day to keep pressure on the leaders until the end. Reigning World Champions Sofia BEKATOROU and Emilia TSOULFA (GRE) made their move as well, dropping a 19 from the first day and picking up consistent 3, 2, 3 from yesterday to lay third overall... ominous!
Overnight leaders, Fernanda OLIVERIRA and Adriana KOSTIW (BRA), had 11 second and seventh place finishes to drop to fourth overall. The Brazilian girls will be thinking about Athens, but only 9 points separate the top five early in the regatta.
In the Men's fleet, the regatta is living up to all that was expected, with 19 points covering the top 18 places and just 10 points covering second to 18. Wins yesterday in the Men's two races went to Dreano & Floch of France, Foerster & Burnham of the USA, Local Heros Basic & Cupac , Portugese Marinho & Nunes, reigning World Champions Zandona & Trani...and overnight leader and regatta leaders again, Braslavets and Matvienko registered their drop so far of 5th and another heat win.
It's obvious the regatta is tough when scores of 8,9,2 & 4 only gets you 17 place overall. As in the case of Japan's top hope Kazuto SEKI & Kenji TODOROKI.
Johan MOLAND would probably like to start the day again. Picking the wrong side of the course in race four and failing to gybe set with the rest of the fleet and coming up with sixth place. The last race of the day turned out to be the swede's drop of 15.
Today, both Men and Women's teams complete qualifying with 1 race each, Teams like Tomis COPI & Davor GLAVINA (SLO), Erni LUKAS & Simon BRUGGER (SUI) and Gerald OWENS & Ross KILLIAN (IRL) who are on the edge of Olympic Qualification could have had sleepless nights.
Racing continues at 11.00 Wednesday. Full results are available on the event website at the address below.