Karatsu, Japan turned on another great day of sailing with a warm, cloudy day, 12-15 knot consistent NNE winds and a half metre chop. The course moved slightly west today to counter the apparent right hand advantage. With some port end bias, the fleet was more spread down the line today at start time and all starts were clear. However there were still some who banged the right hand corner today, not necessarily with good effect.
In the first race of the gold fleet, race seven of the series, Evi VAN ACKER (BEL) rounded mark one first ahead of Annalise MURPHY from Ireland. MULTALA came from behind with some good downwind sailing to finish in first place ahead of TUNNICLIFFE in second, VAN ACKER third and MURPHY in fourth. Overnight leader XU did not have a good race (finishing 19th) but came second in race eight and now lies in fourth place overall. Marit BOUWMEESTER from The Netherlands used the conditions well to lead race eight from start to finish, moving her up to eight place overall, just behind reigning World Champion Sarah STEYAERT (FRA).
In the silver fleet Ashley STODDART from Australia had a very convincing win in race seven, leading from start to finish. Wakako TABATA from Japan sailed well to finish second. STODDART's fourth place in race eight has given her the lead in the silver fleet on a countback from Laura MAERS from Belgium. Race eight was won by Claire DENNIS from USA who improved from fifth at the first mark with Fanny LE SAUSSE from France in second.
The organization for the Laser Radial Worlds has been superb. The tireless event organizer, Takao OTANI, with his welcoming smile, has brought the local team together to ensure that there is great racing and that competitors and officials have the opportunity to experience Japanese culture. Last night everyone was invited to Karatsu Castle for a traditional tea ceremony and other activities. Many of the sailors and officials were dressed in a yukata kimono, which they are allowed to keep, and two sailors entered in the fashion display. Karatsu Castle is an impressive structure built on a hill that overlooks the city and the racing area. The view from the top is amazing. Tonight is the midweek party at the venue.
Tomorrow a further two races are scheduled for the final series, with the second discard due to take affect after race 10. The final day of racing is Sunday.
Results - click here