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11 August 2008, 12:57 pm
OUTTERIDGE And AUSTIN Storm Into 49er Lead
Nathan Outteridge and Ben Austin of Australia
Nathan Outteridge and Ben Austin of Australia take the overall lead

2008 Beijing Olympic Games
Qingdao, China

World Champions Nathan OUTTERIDGE and Ben AUSTIN hit the heights on day two of the 49er event in Qingdao, storming into the overall lead with a sparkling performance.
After being disqualified from Sunday's race 1 following a Jury ruling (on a mark rounding incident) this morning, Nathan OUTTERIDGE and Ben AUSTIN (AUS) bounced back in style with two wins out of three light air 3-5 knot races to take the overall lead of the 49er series.

The disqualification was not as bad as it could have been. The Australians had finished at the back end of the fleet after hitting the first windward mark and obstructing others as they tried to round the mark.

"Thankfully we'll use that as our race drop today," said AUSTIN. As six races of the series have now been put to bed, one score can be excluded from their series total. The excluded score also helps Athens gold medallists Iker MARTINEZ and Xabier FERNANDEZ (ESP) and silver medallists Rodion LUKA and George LEONCHUK (UKR) climb up the leaderboard as both were scored OCS (for crossing the starting line early) on day two - the Spaniards in race 5 and the Ukrainians in race 6.

MARTINEZ has said he will view footage as he feels he and FERNANDEZ were not over the start line early. "If the footage shows we are right, then of course we will lodge a protest," MARTINEZ said.

The Aussies are aware there are still nine races to sail to reach the Medal Race and they will have to watch Jonas WARRER and Martin IBSEN (DEN), who are just two points behind, while the Italian brothers Pietro SIBELLO and Gianfranco SIBELLO are a further five points in deficit.

Sunday's leaders, Stevie MORRISON and Ben RHODES (GBR) had a bad day out, ending with uncharacteristic 14, 15, 15 finishes.

Overall Results - click here
ISAF (source: Olympic News Service)
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