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1 November 2005, 09:12 am
Light Conditions On First Day Of Semis
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Hobie 16 World Championship 2005
Port Elizabeth, South Africa

On day one of the semi finals for the Hobie Cat 16 Worlds 2005 in Pot Elizabeth, South Africa, the competitors faced light conditions for a change. Shaun FERRY and Michele LE SUEUR (RSA) and current Hobie Tiger World Champion Enrique FIGUEROA and his crew Carla MALATRASI (PUR) adapted to the conditions best of all and ended the day with one win apiece.
Yesterday's surf did not cause any problems for the competitors. The first race on Monday featured close racing at the front, with FERRY and LE SUEUR taking the bullet after they went inshore and took advantage of a lift. FIGUEROA and MALATRASI from Puerto Rico, won the second race after the French team of Rudolph CHICHEMANIAN and Christian BRUGES had to take a penalty.

Fleet One - Flier Between The Rocks Pays

'We undertacked the mark and were lucky to get a lift,' said LE SUEUR after their victory. 'We could double trapeze, as everybody else sat inside.' FERRY and LE SUEUR had a bad start, 'We had dirty air and we were pushed up, so we were forced to tack.' They took a flier inshore and sailed between the rocks just outside the surf towards the upwind mark. LE SUEUR commented, 'That paid, so we decided to go back in the second beat and this time we tacked earlier.' That was their golden move, since it opened up a comfortable lead.

At the finish, the South Africans cheered for their fellow countrymen. The French teams of Thomas RICHARDS and Moana TRANKCART and Cédric BADER and Yann MONTOYA sailed consistently in the top three and finished second and third respectively. BADER reflected, 'We did not take any risk and staid with the fleet. Our start was bad, but we went to the right side on the left. There was more wind and the waves pushed us up.'

Fleet Two - Penalty Decides Matters

During the boat swap, the competitors showed real team spirit, as they helped each other with tuning the rig. After two general recalls, the second fleet started clearly. The wind had dropped to five knots, so it was a game of wind search. The French sailors from New Caledonia, Rudolph CHICHEMANIAN and Christian BRUGES, had good boat speed and were first at the upwind mark. CHICHEMANIAN said, 'After we rounded it, we passed another boat in front on port tack, but it was too close and we had to take a penalty.' FIGUEROA and MALATRASI grabbed the lead and finished first.

FIGUEROA commented, 'We were fighting with them, because they were really fast. The wind was very light and shifty, so it was difficult sailing. We came inshore and halfway we got more pressure.' The race committee shortened the course at the bottom mark, due to a further wind drop. The South Africans Paul LAGESSE and Tyran KERFORD came in third.

After a postponement, the third fleet was sent out, but two general recalls later, the race was abandoned.

Today will see the second day of the semi finals for the 17th Hobie Cat 16 World Championships. 112 teams are competing for one of the 56 spots in the final races on Thursday and Friday.

Semi Final Top Ten After One Race

Pos Nation Helm Crew R1 Pts
1 PUR Enrique FIGUEROA Carla MALATRASI 1 1
1 RSA Shaun FERRY Michele LE SUEUR 1 1
3 FRA Rudolph CHICHEMANIAN Christian BRUGES 2 2
3 FRA Thomas RICHARDS Moana TRANKCART 2 2
5 FRA Cédric BADER Yann MONTOYA 3 3
5 RSA Paul LAGESSE Tyran KERFORD 3 3
7 FRA Jerome LE GAL Siret MICKAEL 4 4
7 GUA Juani MAEGLI Cristina GUIROLA 4 4
9 FRA Christophe Renaud DE MALET Albin ROSSOILIN 5 5
9 AUS Tim SHUWALOW Cameron HOOPER 5 5

Qualifier Top Ten Results

Pos Nation Helm Crew R1 R2 Pts
1 TAH Teiva VERONIQUE Kaya GUILLAIN 1 2 3
2 RSA Andrew WARD Steve ARNOLD 4 1 5
3 NZL Fletcher WARREN Georgia MYERS 2 3 5
4 ITA Mark LARUFFA Joshua SELIG 2 4 6
5 FRA Alban BRUNO Jean BERNAZ 1 6 7
6 AUS Shane PETERSON Jesse DOBIE 4 3 7
7 FRA Maxime CLERCQ Yoann BONTE 7 1 8
8 BRA Bernardo ARNDT Bruno OLIVEIRA 2 (RDG) 8 10
9 BRA Carlos AZEVEDO Daniel AZEVEDO 6 5 11
10 RSA Robert ARCHIBALD Paula ARCHIBALD 10 2 12
Diana Bogaards (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Shaun FERRY and Michele LE SUEUR:© Pierrick Contin
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