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22 September 2005, 03:28 pm
Midweek Magic Sees BARKOW Extend Lead
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Rolex International Women's Keelboat Championship 2005
Annapolis, Maryland, USA

Sally BARKOW (USA) and her Team 7 crew are getting close to an untouchable score at the eleventh biennial Rolex International Women's Keelboat Championship hosted by the Annapolis Yacht Club in Maryland, USA. With eleven races planned and eight completed after yesterday's three-race run, Yngling and ISAF Women's Match Racing World Champion BARKOW has posted five victories and no finish worse than a third.
She claimed two of the victories yesterday in ten to 14 knot breezes on Chesapeake Bay, where the 42 boat Rolex IWKC fleet is competing.

'Basically, it looked like they [Team 7] had been sailing full time, and the rest of us hadn't,' said Pease GLASER (USA), crew for Lucy's skipper Cory SERTL (USA), who has proven to be BARKOW's closest competition. Although GLASER laughed, she admitted that her crew could only claim the recent J/22 East Coast Championship as their preparation for this regatta, 'and that was three totally drifter days.' Nevertheless, the Lucy crew looked slick yesterday, leading the second race until BARKOW picked them off on the first downwind leg of a two-lap windward-leeward course. SERTL finished second in the race and added seventh and sixth place finishes to her scoreline to move up to second from third in the overall standings. There is now a 20 point spread between SERTL and BARKOW.

'That was a huge jump for Sally today [yesterday],' said GLASER, who along with SERTL is a USA Rolex Yachtswoman of the Year and crewed with SERTL in 2001 to win this regatta. BARKOW is the defending champion and is sailing with her two Olympic Yngling teammates Carrie HOWE and Debbie CAPOZZI, and an additonal crew member Annie LUSH.

Yesterday's first race was won by, skippered by Annapolis sailor Lorie STOUT, who now is in sixth overall, topping the 13 other Maryland teams competing. 'We were a third of the way up the starting line with Sally to leeward of us,' said STOUT. 'It was the best place to be, and we both launched ahead of the fleet. We almost lost Sally once, but then we legged out at the end when she started mixing it up with other people.' STOUT's lead on the fleet at the finish was by more than eight boat lengths.

'We had an opportunity to shut the door on Lorie but we didn't take it,' said BARKOW. 'She did a great job defending her position.'

BARKOW finished third in the race after New Zealand skipper Sharon FERRIS's far left strategy on the second and last windward leg paid off. FERRIS's TeamOneNewport, which finished second in the race, is the top foreign boat in fourth place overall behind third place Jody SWANSON (USA). STOUT sits in sixth behind fifth place Carol CRONIN (USA) on Team Spidey.

Two college sailors are making an impression on the older veterans. They are skippers Anna TUNNICLIFFE (USA) and Derby ANDERSON (USA), who sit in eighth and ninth respectively. TUNNICLIFFE, a four-time All-American from Old Dominion University, is also the 2005 Quantum Female College Sailor of the Year and earned an invitation to this regatta for the accomplishment.

'Overall as a team, we were finally clicking today [yesterday],' TUNNICLIFFE said of her satisfying 5,6,5 finish positions that moved her up the scoreboard from 13th on Tuesday. Having now graduated, TUNNICLIFFE is pursuing her Olympic dream in the Laser Radial class. 'The other teams, especially the Yngling teams, have an edge on us because they've been sailing keelboats, but we're learning from them all the time.' TUNNICLIFFE competed in the event in 2003 as crew and in 1997 as the youngest entrant ever at age 14.

The regatta continues through to Friday, with two races scheduled for today and one on the final day.

Event Media (As Amended by ISAF). Image, Anna TUNNICLIFFE:© Dan Nerney/Rolex
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