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28 March 2004, 04:31 pm
Winds Wane On Penultimate Day For Stars
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© Jonathan Harley

US Olympic Trials

Finally, the blustery winds that all week had plagued Biscayne Bay gave way to a more user-friendly breeze. Rejoicing at the morning forecast of 18-22 knots, organizers sent the competitors out on Saturday for an on-time start.
Not only did the forecast hold true, but also it allowed three races to be completed by the Star fleet who raced for the second day in a row under the watchful eyes of VIP observers: Bill MARTIN (Ann Arbor, Mich.), past President of US SAILING and currently Acting President of the U.S. Olympic Committee (Colorado Springs, Colo.), who was on the water yesterday; and Janet BAXTER (Chicago, Ill.), who is not only the current President of US SAILING, but also the first woman to hold that position in the organization's history, went out to watch yesterday's action.

The added attention evidently did not change the strategy of conservative sailing that continues to keep Paul CAYARD (Kentfield, Calif.) and Phil TRINTER (Lorain, Ohio) in the lead position of the 22-boat fleet. The duo placed 4-3-5 to earn a low score of 24 points - and 22 points of breathing room over their closest competitor.

Once 12 races were completed the scoring rules allowed competitors to take a second drop in calculating the overall standings. Reaping the most benefit were Andy LOVELL (New Orleans, La.) and Olympic Gold Medallist Magnus LILJEDAHL (Miami, Fla.) who rocketed up to second overall once they were able to discard the OCS (on the course side) and the DNS (did not start) they earned on day one of racing - a byproduct of losing their mast. Between the points they dropped, and the eight they added after finishing 5-1-2 yesterday, the pair hold second with 46 points.

George SZABO (San Diego, Calif.) and crew Mark STRUBE (West Palm Beach, Fla.) posted finishes of 8-9-8 to drop back from second to third in the overall standings on 48 points.

For the second day in a row, Eric DOYLE (San Diego, Calif.) and Brian SHARP (Norwalk, Conn./Franklin, Mass.) won the first race of the day. They followed with a sixth and a fifth, the latter of which became an OCS. They remain fourth overall with 61 points.

Olympic Gold medallists Mark REYNOLDS (San Diego, Calif.) and Steve ERICKSON (Seattle, Wash./Hood River, Ore.) won the final race of the day after finishing 3-11 in the earlier races. They stand fifth overall with 61 points.

Racing will conclude today, Sunday, March 28. The Race Committee will plan for three races.

Full results are available on the event website at the address below.
Jan Harley (As Amended By ISAF News Editor)
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