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2 August 2013, 08:00 am
An Early Start For 470 Juniors
Matteo Capurro/Matteo Puppo (ITA
Matteo Capurro and Matteo Puppo (ITA) lead the men's fleet

470 Junior World Championship 2013
La Rochelle, France

Italy and France maintain the lead in the men's and women's 470 fleets at the Junior Worlds in La Rochelle after an early start to get back on schedule. Matteo Capurro and Matteo Puppo (ITA) lead the men's fleet while Maelenn Lemaitre and Aloise Retornaz (FRA) hold off the Ukrainean challenge.
After Wednesday's racing was called off due to lack of wind, the Race Committee made the call to take advantage of the morning breeze to get back on schedule and it was an early start for the 470 Junior Worlds fleets with the women up on the race track and underway at 09:30 hours.

Orhan Tuker (TUR), 470 Class Course Representative for the 470 Junior Worlds is responsible to oversee the racing for the Junior Worlds. "We needed to get back ourselves back on track today, so with a forecast of breeze in the morning got racing underway at 0930. We completed the races as planned. It was a challenging day to get the last two races underway in the light and shifting wind, but we have a great race management team here who delivered a fair day's racing," he said.

The wind out on the race track at 0930 hours was a stable 12-13 knot breeze, with the wind decreasing to about 6-7 knots for the final two races.

470 Junior Worlds - Men
The format for the 470 Junior Worlds men's fleet is a five race qualifying stage, with the teams then carrying forward their qualifying position on the leaderboard into the gold and silver fleet finals stage. Effectively the finals stage sees the Championship start again, with teams back close on points.

Leading the gold fleet into the first race of the final stage were Pierre Quiroga and Clement Pequin, but it was Italy's Matteo Capurro and Matteo Puppo who scored the opening race win and followed up with a fourth in the second race to move up to first overall. The final series discard kicked in after the third race of the day, so despite a 21st finish, the pair remain in first overall, with Quiroga and Pequin in second. In third are Italy's Francesco Rebaudi and Matteo Ramian.

Consistency pays and Israel's Gal Cohen and Dan Froyliche pushed up the leaderboard with a 7,1 to third overall, up from 17th going into the day. A win in the day's closing race, could not take them any higher, as the discard kicked in and as they are not able to discard their "carry forward" result of 17th from the qualifying stage, are held back in fourth overall.

As a combined achievement across the men's and women's fleets, Israel' s junior teams excelled today. Eran Sela, who competed in the 470 at the 2012 Olympics, coaches the junior teams in a role not unfamiliar to him as prior to his Olympic campaign he coached 420s. Explaining what he brings to the role, Sela said, "With the things I know about the 470, it was very easy at the beginning of the year to teach them about the technique and the small secrets of the 470." On the success of their campaign so far, Sela continued, "With the boys we have been to Hyeres and the 470 Europeans, and for the girls this is their first ever international event. The boys have also been at a training camp in Greece with the Kavas brothers, and the Italian 470 team Simon Sivitz Kosuta and Jas Farneti have also been training in Israel. Next year, we plan to have even more boats in Israel training with us."

Looking ahead to the team's potential, Sela said, "They are amazing and very young. They finished 8th in the 470 Europeans, which was a very impressive result. We aim for the Olympic Games in Rio, but they need to learn and understand the boat completely and develop as professional athletes."

Seventeen year old Cohen has been sailing the 470 for a couple of years, and partnered with Froyliche last year when he stepped up to the 470 from the 420. A great day of racing drew a smile from Froyliche who said, "It is always hard out there, but when it goes well it just goes well!" They only arrived two days ahead of the Championship, and have taken time to adjust to the conditions here. Cohen relishes the challenge of the 470. "It is a sophisticated boat, it is not a regular boat. There are lot of elements you have to control and master to sail the boat well, and I really like that," he said.

Two-time ISAF Youth World Champion in the 420 Class in 2010 and 2011, Jordi Xammar from Spain is racing with crew Joan Herp, with whom he secured his 2010 Youth Worlds victory, and so far results on the water are all top ten. "We are happy with our speed now. We were having problems around the course and at the starts, but today we did well," Xammar commented. "We were not sure on the start, being too careful for OCS, the other boats, the current, but today we just said let's start like always and do what we know. Our coach changed our configuration on the sails and we had really good speed in the last two races, so our thanks to him." The pair are up to fifth overall and sit just two points off third place.

470 Junior Worlds - Men Top 5
1. Matteo Capurro/Matteo Puppo (ITA) - 10 pts
2. Pierre Quiroga/Clement Pequin (FRA) - 14 pts
3. Francesco RebaudI/Matteo Ramian (ITA) - 15 pts
4. Gal Cohen/Dan Froyliche (ISR) - 17 pts
5. Jordi Xammar/Joan Herp (ESP) - 17 pts

470 Junior Worlds - Women
The women were up on the race track first, and counting the two race wins from Tuesday's races 4 and 5, Ukraine's Anna Kyselova and Anastasiya Krasko made it a hat trick with another win in race 6 to close the gap to series leaders Maelenn Lemaitre and Aloise Retornaz (FRA).

Lemaitre and Retornaz have not yet released the yellow leader bibs in the series and it looks as though the Championship will turn out to be a battle between these two teams. The Ukraine pair are four points off first, with the third placed pair Tsuf Zamet and Lia Biran from Israel a massive 32 points behind them.

Zamet and Biran delivered a consistent day. "We thought it would be much longer on the water today, but actually it was not too hard," said Zamet. Their closest push to claim a win came in race six when they had the lead in their hands during the second upwind leg, but were overhauled by Kyselova and Krasko downwind.

"It is fun to be here," said Biran. "We were afraid that we would not be so good. But we are being coached by Eran and he is the best."

Lemaitre and Retornaz have been sailing together for six years. They represented France at the ISAF Youth Worlds, securing bronze in 2010, before making the step to the 470 as they strive towards their Olympic dream. "We have been the Junior European silver medallists," said Lemaitre. "The level in the 470 is really high, because the best sailors who want to go to the Olympics race the boat."

470 Junior Worlds - Women Top 5
1. Maelenn Lemaitre/Aloise Retornaz - 11 pts
2. Anna Kyselova/ Anastasiya Krasko - 15 pts
3. Tsuf Zamet/Lia Biran (ISR) - 47 pts
4. Joanna Freeman/Katie Tomsett - 52 pts
5. Amy Searbright/Anna Carpenter (GBR) - 52 pts

Full Results

Racing for all fleets is scheduled to get underway at 14:00 hours on Friday 2 August 2013. The Juniors Worlds men fleet are scheduled to have three races, the Junior Worlds women two races, with the top eight on the leaderboard after Friday's racing advancing to the Medal Race on Saturday.

The 470 Masters' Cup and Open Classic fleets are scheduled to hold three races to complete their events.

179 teams are competing in three events in La Rochelle, which on Monday opened the 50th Anniversary Celebrations of the International 470 Class. Alongside the 470 Junior Worlds racing is underway in the 470 Masters' Cup and 470 Open Classic events.

470 Anniversary Website

Luissa Smith
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