After the Skippers briefing at 10am the first group of sailors were released onto the water to begin the 2002 ISAF Women's Match Racing World Championships here in Calpe, Spain. Clear sky's and 15 knots of wind greeted competitors for the first gun at 11.45. The proposed format of the 16 team event is for all teams to race each other before splitting the top 8 teams and the bottom 8 teams into a quarter final round and consolation round for places 9 through 16. After the quarter final round for the top 8 teams the semi-finals and thereafter the finals will take place. In order to give the Race Committee full flexibility in case of bad weather, for Round 1 the teams have been split into 2 leagues of 8 based on the Ranking of 27 March. After completing the two 8 team round robins the Race Committee will decide whether to press ahead and complete the full 16 team round robin or follow an alternative solution.
Today the wind was blowing offshore and varied between 9 and 16 knots with shifts of up to 30 degrees. Later on in the day the breeze got trickier with wind holes appearing on the course that got the better of a number sailors.
League A raced 3 flights and then League B raced 4 flights then League A once again took the boats and raced two further flights before the PRO called a halt to racing at 18.30.
After 5 flights League A is shaping up as follows.
Marie Bjorling SWE 5/5
Liz Baylis USA 5/5
Sabrina Gurioli ITA 3/5 with wins over Le Helley, Grosvenor and Petersen.
Gwen Joulie FRA 2/5 with wins over Grosvenor and Leroy.
Anne Le Helley FRA 2/5 with wins over Joulie and Petersen.
Claire Leroy FRA 2/5 with wins over Gurioly and Grosvenor
Nina B Petersen DEN 1/5 with a win against Joulie
Sandy Grosvenor USA 0/5
After 4 flights League B looks like this:
Lotte Meldgaard Pedersen DEN 3/4 with wins against Riley, Philippe and Castenado.
Malin Millbourn SWE 3/4 with wins against Riley, Ellis and Castenado.
Giulia Conti ITA 1/4 with a win against Castenado.
Ines Montefusco ESP 0/4
Dawn Riley USA 2/4 with wins against Conti and Montefusco.
Cordelia Ellis GBR 3/4 with wins against Meldgaard, Conti and Montefusco.
Christelle Philippe FRA 3/4 with wins against Millbourn, Conti and Montefusco
Mar Castenado ESP 1/4 with a win against Montefusco.
Tomorrow it is planned to race League B first to complete their round robin before League A finishes their remaining two flights. Forecast permitting the other half of the 16 team round will commence mid-afternoon.
The Umpires explained the reasoning behind the calls that had been made during the day at the debrief and afterwards crews relaxed with a few cool beers looking forward to another days excellent racing.