As the fleet racing drew to a close at the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships, 45 nations have qualified their country to compete at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition.
On the penultimate day of racing at Perth 2011 the final Laser spots and the Men's RS:X and Women's 470 places were taken ahead of tomorrow's live Medal Races, which will be available to view on the ISAF website from 12:45 local time here
Twenty four nations had already qualified in the Laser and after the Silver fleet completed racing today a further 11 have joined them. Belgium, China Finland, Norway, Russia, Singapore, Slovenia, Switzerland, Turkey, Uruguay and US Virgin Islands all put in the big performances when it mattered to qualify their nation for London 2012.
The final 12 spots will be available at the 2012 Laser World Championship from 4-12 May next year in Boltenhagen, Germany.
In the Women's 470 14 nations qualified at Perth 2011. Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Spain, France, Germany, Israel, Italy, Japan, the Netherlands, New Zealand, Slovenia, Sweden and the USA all came through to take the qualification places.
Slovenia's Tina Mrak and Teja Cerne had their best days sailing at Perth 2011 to climb from the 17th ranked nation, and outside the qualification places, to the 13th ranked. The girls found out the news as soon as they reached the shore and were delighted, Mrak said, "We sailed two great races today. We improved on every lap and we are very happy."
"After yesterday we were angry,"
added Cerne, "and we didn't believe we could do it so it is a really great feeling at the end of the championship."
Five more nations have the opportunity to qualify at the 2012 470 World Championships from 10-19 May 2012 in Barcelona, Spain.
With 29 nations in the Men's RS:X Gold fleet the battle for one of 28 places was tight. Argentina, Australia, Brazil, Canada, China, Croatia, Cyprus, Spain, France, Germany, Greece, Hong Kong, Hungary, Israel, Italy, Japan, Korea, Lithuania, Mexico, the Netherlands, Norway, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Russia, Switzerland, Ukraine and the USA all qualified. And for the remaining nations vying for an Olympic spot they will have to try again at the 2012 RS:X World Championship in Cadiz, Spain in March next year.
With qualification out of the way the Medal Race action tomorrow will see ten of the best teams compete for World Championship glory in their respective classes. The Women's 470 Medal Race kicks off the action at 13:10 local time followed by the 49er, Men's RS:X and Laser.
Live Streaming from the final day of sailing at Perth 2011 will be available from 12:45 - 18:00 local time (05:45 - 10:00 GMT). The live stream is available here.
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.