Eleven nations in the Star class have qualified for the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition after ten races at the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships.
Brazil, Canada, France, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Poland, Portugal, Switzerland, Sweden and the USA have all guaranteed themselves a Star spot at London 2012 following an action packed week of sailing.
Iain Percy and Andrew Simpson (GBR) had to withdraw earlier on in the week but their place at London 2012 is assured after they were selected to take the British quota spot. Four more places are available at the Star World Championship in Hyeres, France from 2-12 May 2012.
Going into the final day of Star fleet racing Ireland's Peter O'Leary and David Burrows occupied the final qualification spot but were tied on 97 points with Spain's Fernando Echavarri and Fernando Rodriguez. With qualification in their hands the Irish put in one of their best performances of the regatta with a seventh in Race 9 followed up with a 13th place finish in Race 10 whilst the Spanish crumbled with a 24-22.
The Irish team leader, James O'Callaghan, said, "The Star's certainly did not do it the easy way but they showed great character holding their nerve when it looked bleak during that second race.
"A lot of hard work from each of the teams and coaches has made this possible. With our eyes now firmly focussed on the Games we will be working hard to make sure we have a successful Olympics."
Brazil's Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada have been the stand out performers in the Star class and head into tomorrow's Medal Race with an 18 point advantage and guaranteed of a medal. It's then very tight between Mark Mendelblatt and Brian Fatih (USA), Robert Stanjek and Frithjof Kleen (GER) and Fredrik Loof and Max Salminen (SWE). Five points separate second to fourth so each team will look to finish with a strong performance.
The qualification places in the Women's 470 and Men's RS:X will be decided tomorrow at Perth 2011.
Click here for more on the London 2012 Olympic Qualification system.
The Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships website will bring you results, tracking, live updates and all the latest news both on and off the water.