For several more, there will be all to play for tomorrow in the remaining battles to qualify, with tie-breaking inevitable among this highly competitive field.
On 10 wins, Jesper RADICH (DEN) of Desafio Espanol has the most wins in Group B, and will go through even if he loses his remaining three matches. On how he has done well to get to this point, RADICH says, 'My guys are great, our teamwork has been incredible, and I don't think we've made one mistake in our manoeuvres. This has allowed me to focus and do my own thing, and the spirit on the boat has been great. But when we get into the next round, we know it will be tougher.'
Behind RADICH in the standings are previous event champion Magnus HOLMBERG (SWE) of Victory Challenge on 8 wins, and Tour leader Mathieu RICHARD (FRA) of Saba Racing and fellow Frenchman Sebastien COL of Areva Challenge on 7 wins. But these four teams are far from assured of going through, as Johnie BERNTSSON (SWE) on 5 wins could be a spoiler if he wins all his remaining matches against RICHARD, HOLMBERG, and Claire LEROY (FRA).
'We've got some work to do,' said the young Swede, 'But we're improving all the time. Our tacks have gotten better, we have great upwind speed, so we have good confidence for tomorrow.'
With a forecast for tomorrow of continued overcast skies, with the wind shifting back to the north, shifty conditions will likely return to the race course under the rocky cliffs of Marstrand Island.
'This might be good for us,' said BERNTSSON, who hails from just a few kilometres away, 'As it will mean anything can happen.'
The lead in Group A is shared by two teams on 8 wins each, Gavin BRADY (NZL) of BMW ORACLE Racing, and Mattias RAHM (SWE) of Victory Challenge. But this group has four flights remaining in the afternoon round tomorrow, so its too early to tell if Bjorn HANSEN (SWE) and Simon MINOPRIO (NZL), who follow the leaders on six wins each, will be able to hold these positions after the final finish tomorrow.
A possible spoiler in this group is Torvar MIRSKY (AUS), who at 21 years old is the youngest in the field of 16 teams, and is at his first World Tour event. MIRSKY, a youth match race champion from Perth, was given this break into a Tour event by being tapped by his mentor Peter GILMOUR (AUS) to replace him when duties called in Valencia. MIRSKY struggled to find a win in the first day's light and fluky conditions, but has come on to start winning some matches, including both against HANSEN.
'Obviously we've got a bit on with being new to the event and the boats, but we're improving every day and just really happy to be here,' he said. 'For tomorrow, we're going to just keep going at it the best we can and see what happens.' On whether he'd like to compete in more Tour events, MIRSKY said 'We would do everything we can to get invited back.'
1. Mattias RAHM (SWE), 8-2
2. Gavin BRADY (NZL), 8-2
3. Simon MINOPRIO (NZL), 6-4
4. Bjorn HANSEN (SWE), 6-4
5. Ian WILLIAMS (GBR), 4-6
6. Torvar MIRSKY (AUS), 4-6
7. Evgeniy NEUGODNIKOV (RUS), 2-8
8. Jenny AXHEDE (SWE), 0-10
1. Jesper RADICH (DEN), 10-1
2. Magnus HOLMBERG (SWE), 8-3
3. Mathieu RICHARD (FRA), 7-4
4. Sebastien COL (FRA), 7-4
5. Johnie BERNTSSON (SWE), 6-4
6. Eric MONNIN (SUI), 4-6
7. Claire LEROY (FRA), 2-9
8. Malin MILLBOURN (SWE), 1-10
ISAF Match Racing World Championship Standings
(After Stage 7)
|1||Mathieu RICHARD||FRA||2||Saba Sailing Team||70|
|2||Paolo CIAN||ITA||5||Team Viano Mercedes Benz||66|
|3||Ian WILLIAMS||GBR||1||Team Pindar||62|
|4||Jesper BANK||DEN||11||United Internet Team Germany||45|
|5||Sébastien COL||FRA||3||Areva Challenge||41|
|8||Staffan LINDBERG||FIN||9||Alandia Sailing Team||37|
|Stage 1||Portugal Match Cup||Cascais, Portugal||18-23 July 2006|
|Stage 2||Danish Open||Copenhagen, Denmark||9-13 August 2006|
|Stage 3||St. Moritz Match Race||St Moritz, Switzerland||15-20 August 2006|
|Stage 4||Bermuda Gold Cup||Hamilton, Bermuda||10-15 October 2006|
|Stage 5||Allianz Cup||San Francisco, USA||24-29 October|
|Stage 6||Monsoon Cup||Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia||28 November-3 December 2006|
|Stage 7||Match Race Germany||Langenargen, Germany||23-28 May 2007|
|Stage 8||GKSS Match Race||Marstrand, Sweden||2-8 July 2007|
|Stage 9||Portugal Match Cup||Cascais, Portugal||24-25 July 2007|
|Stage 10||Danish Open||Copenhagen, Denmark||8-12 August 2007|
|Stage 11||St. Moritz Match Race||St Moritz, Switzerland||14-19 August 2007|
|Stage 12||Latium Match Cup||Fiumicino, Italy||11-16 September 2007|
|Stage 13||Locman Cup - Elba Island||Porto Azzurro, Elba Island, Italy||25-30 September 2007|
|Stage 14||Bermuda Gold Cup||Hamilton, Bermuda||9-14 October 2007|
|Stage 15||Brasil Sailing Cup||Angra dos Reis, Brazil||23-28 October 2007|
|Stage 16||Monsoon Cup||Kuala Terengganu, Malaysia||28 November-2 December 2007|
The World Match Racing Tour is an ISAF Special Event. Skippers earn points towards the World Championship at the nine events of the World Tour and the highest scoring skipper at the end of the season is the ISAF Match Racing World Champion.
The World Tour Partner and Official Car is BMW AG (Munich, Germany). World Tour sponsors include Sebago (Rockford, USA), the Official Footwear Supplier, Travel Places (West Sussex, Great Britain), the Official Travel Partner and Wedgwood (Cheshire, Great Britain) the Official Trophy Supplier.
For more information on the World Match Racing Tour, its competitors and events, visit the official World Tour website - www.WorldMatchRacingTour.com. World Match Racing Tour television programmes may be viewed on demand by clicking on the television icon on the home page of the website.
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