In 13 to 18 knots of wind the first attempted start was postponed when the wind started to back through 25 degrees and the course was reset. The fleet got away cleanly under a black flag at the third attempt and split evenly up the first windward leg. Series leader Robert SCHEIDT (BRA) had a good start in the middle of the line to leeward of his nearest competitor Michael BLACKBURN (AUS). Scheidt took up the story "I managed to pinch him off and he had to tack away. I worked the middle to left and rounded the first mark around tenth with Michael 3 places behind me". Out in front 19 year old, Tom SLINGSBY (AUS) had established a comfortable lead from Luka RADELIC (CRO) and Anders NYHOLM (DEN) who held their positions to the finish.
Scheidt continued, "On the reach I got a yellow flag penalty and had to make a 720 turn and Michael passed me. We sailed together downwind and then I passed him up on the second upwind and rounded seventh. On the downwind he came closer and was also catching me on the last reach. On the last short upwind I got a second yellow flag just before the finish and had to retire This was very frustrating as well as disappointing and I only had a few minutes to recover my composure and concentrate on the second race."
In the second race the tables had turned and Blackburn started chasing Scheidt in the pre starts. Scheidt went on to say "We had a bit of a match race but I managed to escape from him on all three attempted starts. In the final start I started to windward of him and I rolled him and he had to tack away. I then had a clear lane and went left and rounded the top mark about sixth and Michael was a long way behind. I had a lot of emotion and was excited because I had another chance."
Mark MENDELBLATT (USA) led the race from start to finish with Scheidt pulling through to second. Blackburn had too much to do and could not influence the results and opted to use his second discard and take an early shower.
Mendelblatt's first together with a fourth from the previous race was enough to give him the runner up spot one point ahead of Blackburn.
Robert SCHEIDT'S win, gives him his seventh Laser World Championship title.
Alongside World Championship honours, 8 nations were striving to qualify for the 2004 Olympic Sailing Competition, and subject to ISAF ratification these final slots go to four nations from the Gold Fleet and four from the Silver fleet as follows (in order of finishing): Korea, Malaysia, Ireland, Uruguay, Singapore, China, Cyprus and the Czech Republic.
The performance of their athletes is great news for Malaysia, Uruguay and Singapore, as it marks their only qualification for the 2004 Olympic Sailing Competition.
For the full rundown on nations qualified for the 2004 Olympic Sailing Competition Click Here.
Overall Top 20
|1||BRA 179787||SCHEIDT Robert||-6||5||1||1||1||1||2||3||(dnf)||2||16,0|
|2||USA 179914||MENDELBLATT Mark||4||-25||3||1||3||4||-8||4||4||1||24,0|
|3||AUS 179773||BLACKBURN Michael||3||-6||2||4||5||1||1||2||7||(dnf)||25,0|
|4||NZL 179883||PEPPER Hamish||1||8||-29||7||2||5||3||11||-14||12||49,0|
|5||SWE 179905||SUNESON Karl||6||-16||1||2||9||2||-17||16||8||5||49,0|
|6||AUT 179777||GERITZER Andreas||-13||3||7||3||9||2||16||1||9||-32||50,0|
|7||AUS 179776||SLINGSBY Tom||11||18||8||(dsq)||7||7||5||6||1||-30||63,0|
|8||GBR 179835||GOODISON Paul||(bfd)||14||2||2||12||3||6||-32||22||6||67,0|
|9||NOR 179878||MOBERG Peer||12||-26||14||6||4||6||4||20||(bfd)||8||74,0|
|10||CRO 179809||VUJASINOVIC Milan||18||3||11||7||-32||18||14||15||13||-41||99,0|
|11||DEN 179816||NYHOLM Anders||-32||31||6||10||2||7||30||-53||3||13||102,0|
|12||ITA 179860||NEGRI Diego||-46||8||(ocs)||11||12||16||23||25||16||4||115,0|
|13||NED 179877||POSTMA Pieter-Jan||-25||20||4||4||21||8||-33||8||31||25||121,0|
|14||FRA 179829||STEYAERT Jeremie||23||-42||10||14||3||22||-25||13||21||20||126,0|
|15||GBR 179840||STYLES Hugh||20||36||19||14||-38||8||(dnf)||10||6||16||129,0|
|16||SLO 179897||ZBOGAR Vasilij||5||-24||6||18||24||10||-57||7||15||44||129,0|
|17||FIN 179826||WESTMAN Fredrik||14||14||11||-30||5||12||-60||27||29||18||130,0|
|18||FRA 179827||LE BRETON Thomas||9||6||-18||15||7||14||-58||14||28||39||132,0|
|19||CRO 179807||RADELIC Luka||13||12||(ocs)||21||31||9||37||-69||2||9||134,0|
|20||AUS 179774||CASEY Brendan||15||-25||3||6||6||3||44||52||5||(bfd)||134,0|