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15 August 2005, 04:38 pm
ALBALAT Scores Convincing Win
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Laser 4.7 World Championship 2005
Barrington, Rhode Island, USA

The were a number of changes in the top ten places after the final day of racing at the Laser 4.7 World Championships at Barrington Yacht Club, Rhode Island, USA. However there was no stopping Joaquin Blanco ALBALAT (ESP) at the top of the leaderboard who claimed the World title with a race to spare.
The changes were partly due to the introduction of a second discard and testing sailing conditions that favoured the left hand side of the windward legs rather than the more normal right shift pattern of a sea breeze.

In a light southerly gradient wind and very high humidity the fleet split in half soon after the start of the first race. Those that went right soon found themselves on the wrong side of a shift and facing a struggle to get back into the race. After a second row start series leader ALBALAT dug himself out of the pack and worked the centre right. His closest rival Guney Can KAPTAN (TUR) was further to the right.

At the first mark Branko MARKOVINOVIC (PER) was first to round coming in from the left ahead of Marco TEIXIDOR (PUR). ALBALAT rounded in 31st, four boats behind KAPTAN. MARKOVINOVIC and TEIXIDOR held their positions until the finish. Behind them all eyes were on KAPTAN and ALBALAT as they moved through the fleet keeping a careful eye on each other. ALBALAT passed KAPTAN on the second downwind and the two remain locked together on the last reach. On the short windward leg to the finish ALBALAT displayed maturity well beyond his 16 years of age holding a loose, tack for tack, cover on the Turkish sailor and gradually increasing the gap between them. At the finish ALBALAT crossed in eleventh place which was enough to give him the World title with a race to spare having previously never finished out of the top ten.

In the final race again saw the leaders coming from the left hand side this time MARKOVINOVIC was chasing his fellow country man Sebastian BEINGOLEA to make it Peru 1,2 at the fist mark. ALBALAT was again well back and KAPTAN was even further behind. BEINGOLEA led throughout and under 15 sailor Michas JASON worked his way to second, his best result of the Championship.

ALBALAT recovered well to ninth showing once again the hallmark of a champion, having the speed and coolness to recover from a poor start even in this quality fleet.

With sailors from eight different countries in the top final top ten the Laser 4.7 is well on the way to achieving a similar world wide spread enjoyed by the Laser Radial and Laser. A 25% participation by girls is also encouraging for women's single-handed sailing.

Final Results - Top Ten

Pos Nation Name R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 R10 Pts
1 ESP Joaquin BLANCO ALBALAT 1 1 1 3t 1 1 6 6 11t 9 26
2 GBR Adam SIMS 3 2 3 1 4 11t 12 13t 10 4 39
3 SLO Dany STANISIC 10t 1 10 2 2 2 14 dnf-t 3 7 41
4 TUR Guney Can KAPTAN 4 3 6t 3 1 1 15 1 17 dnf-t 45
5 USA Stephanie ROBLE 2 9t 9 9 5 4 20t 7 4 10 50
6 PUR Marco TEIXIDOR 28t 7 4 1 10 6 7 25t 2 15 52
7 PER Montjoy Branko MARKOVINOVIC 19 2 dsq-t 5 12 3 10 18t 1 5 57
8 RSA Rudy MCNEIL 7 10 1 14t 11 6 3 17t 5 16 59
9 SLO Nik PLETIKOS 5 5 5 5 8 15t 19 31t 6 6 59
10 GBR Tom HAYES 1 4 8t 4 3 5 25 5 26t 21 68
Event Media (As Amended by ISAF)
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