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11 May 2005, 10:14 am
Favourites Make The Running
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Expert Olympic Garda 2005
Riva Del Garda, Trento, Italy

The first day of racing in the ISAF Grade 2 Expert Olympic Garda, the second stage of the Eurolymp series, got underway yesterday after a delayed start. After two races across all the fleets, except the 49er's who managed three, the pre-race favourites have taken an early lead.
The Ora wind, the engine of regattas on Lake Garda, Trento, Italy, did not start blowing until 1530 hours local time yesterday meaning the crews did not get on the water until late in the afternoon.

Olympic bronze medallist in 2004, Olympic champion in 1996 and ISAF World Sailing Rankings' number four in the Finn, Mateusz KUSZNIEREWICZ (POL), is, after eleven successful years in the Finn, beginning an Beijing Olympic campaign in the Star. He has teamed up with Dominik ZYCKI, and the pair have made a near perfect start with a third and a first putting them top of the leaderboard ahead of the Italians, Nicola CELON and Agostino SOMMARIVA and Luca MODENA and Sergio LAMBERTENGHI.

Three winners of the recent ISAF Grade 1 Semaine Olympique Française have assumed an early lead in Italy. The American team of Sally BARKOW heads the Yngling fleet after making a perfect start with two bullets from two. In the Finn fleet, Emilios PAPATHANASIOU (GRE) has started almost as well with a second place followed by a bullet. Right behind him is Spain's Olympic silver medallist and ISAF World Sailing Rankings' number one, Rafa TRUJILLO, who has a bullet and a third place. The third Hyères winner to get off to a flying start is Australian, Tom SLINGSBY, who leads from Aron LOLIC (CRO) and Diego NEGRI (ITA) in the Laser.

In the Tornado fleet, Andrey KIRILYUK and Valery USHKOV (RUS) are making the running with two bullets from two putting them clear at the top.

Sailing on home waters, the Italians have made an excellent start on Lake Garda and head the leaderboards of the remaining four fleets. In the Laser Radial fleet, Larissa NEVIEROV (ITA) seems to have started with the sort of form that won her the ISAF Grade 2 Barcelona Olympic Sailing Week 2005 back in March. Second in Barcelona was Pietro SIBELLO and his brother, Gianfranco (ITA). They head an Italian trio at the top of the 49er leaderboard after three bullets from three races.

In the 470 men fleet, Enrico FONDA and Pietro ZUKKETTI (ITA) have made an impressive start to top the leaderboard. Their Italian rivals and ISAF World Sailing Rankings' number ones, Gabrio ZANDONA and Francesco DELLA TORRE (ITA), have made a slow start and lie in fifth. ISAF World Sailing Rankings' number six, and Italian Olympic representative in the Yngling, Giulia CONTI (ITA) is racing with Giovanna MICOL (ITA) in the 470 women and has made an excellent start with two second places putting them top of the leaderboard. Australia's Lauren JEFFRIES and Rike ZIEGELMAYER lie second with Olympic gold medallist in the Europe, Siren SUNDBY and her crew, Karianne MELLEBY (NOR) seemingly making strides in their new equipment, in third place overall.

ISAF. Image, KUSZNIEREWICZ is leaving the Finn for a Star Olympic campaign:© Clive Mason/Getty Images
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