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11 August 2005, 09:13 am
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Laser European Championship 2005
Cartagena, Spain

After another delayed start, strong winds in Cartagena, Spain allowed the competitors at the ISAF Grade C1 Laser European Championship to put on a real show for the spectators. It turned out to be a great day for the top two sailors in the ISAF World Sailing Rankings with Robert SCHEIDT (BRA) and Paul GOODISON (GBR) between them winning three of the day's four races.
With the first discard counting after race five, SCHEIDT and GOODISON have pulled out a ten point lead over the rest of the fleet, with the Brazilian just edging out his British rival to lead by a single point. Overnight leader Andreas GERITZER (AUT) had an unfortunate day with finishes of 7 and 11 dropping him to fourth overall.

The wind arrived to the waters of Cartagena yesterday, accompanied by strong waves of over one and a half metres, which put the fleet in trouble on more than one occasion. However at the scheduled start time there was no wind and light rain, which had been heavier early in the morning, causing the Race Committee to postpone temporarily. At 1400 hours local time the 242 participants set off. As the weather report had indicated, the wind increased to 14-16 knots on the senior course.

The first of the two races started at 1530, with two general recalls producing tension in the fleet. The Olympic and World Champion SCHEIDT was protested on Tuesday and it was resolved the same day with a DSQ in race four. However this only seemed to spur the Brazilian on as he produced his best form in Spain yesterday. In the first leg he was among the leading group and went on to take control in the second leg, crossing the line to take his second bullet of the Championship. Mate ARAPOV (CRO) followed him in second ahead of Tom SLINGSBY (AUS), Evangelos CHIMONAS (GRE) and Matias DEL SOLAR (CHI) in fifth place.

In the other division GOODISON raced to his second consecutive win ahead of Gustavo LIMA (POR) and Milan VUJASINOVIC (CRO). In the second race of the day, SCHEIDT made a good start and looked comfortable throughout the race to score another bullet and move back to the top of the leaderboard. LIMA capped a great day by scoring a bullet in the other division to move to sixth overall. Meanwhile GOODISON ensured he remained in close contact with SCHEIDT by finishing second to move second overall on twelve points.

After putting himself right up with the leaders with his third place in race five, SLINGSBY could only manage a ninth in the day's final race. With GERITZER coming in eleventh, the Australian holds on to third but has lost a little ground on the leading pair. ARAPOV scored a sixth in race six to move up to fifth overall.

The two youth divisions began at 1600 in twelve knots of wind. Division B, suffered from a series of problems at the starting line, eventually setting off at 1700 after several general recalls.

Overnight leader, Jean-Baptiste BERNAZ (FRA) managed to stay with front group and eventually crossed the line in sixth place. Estonia's Dennis KARPAK took the bullet ahead of Alex MUSCAT (ESP) and Simon GROTELUSCHEN (GER).

BERNAZ went on to take fifth in the next race whilst GROTELUSCHEN took his third bullet to move up into second place, just two points behind the Frenchman. Eighth place for Daniel MIHELIC (CRO) keeps him third overall.

The final series of the Championship is scheduled to get underway with two races today, before concluding with the final two races of the Championship tomorrow.

Top Ten After Six Races

Pos Nation Helm R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 Pts
1 BRA Robert SCHEIDT 4 1 4 (DSQ) 1 1 11
2 GBR Paul GOODISON 5 (21) 3 1 1 2 12
3 AUS Tom SLINGSBY 8 7 2 2 3 (9) 22
4 AUT Andreas GERITZER 8 2 3 2 7 (11) 22
5 CRO Mate ARAPOV (12) 3 4 11 2 6 26
6 POR Gustavo LIMA 16 4 7 (20) 2 1 30
7 DEN Anders NYHOLM (44) 4 6 1 7 12 30
8 BRA Bruno FONTES 10 1 (22) 9 6 5 31
9 ITA Diego NEGRI 10 11 2 5 (20) 4 32
10 GRE Evangelos CHIMONAS 1 (57) 8 14 4 7 34
Pep Portas (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Good winds made for a spectacular day of racing in Cartenga:© Pep Portas
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