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13 July 2008, 06:42 pm
Two Top Spots For Britain And Cyprus On Day Two In Århus
Gabrielle KING
Defending champion Gabrielle KING took over the top spot in the Laser Radial fleet

Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship 2008
Århus, Denmark

There was an international feel to day two of racing at the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship in Århus, Denmark where sailors from Europe, Oceania and Africa occupy the leaderboard top spots.
The British team lead the charge in the 29er with two strong performances in both the girls and boys fleets, while the Cypriot sailors carried on dominating in the Laser and Boy's RS:X. The strong winds returned to the Bay of Århus today keeping the sailors working hard on the second day of the event.

There was a change at the top of the leaderboard in the SL16 multihull fleet with the ISAF Athlete Participation Programme (APP) sailors from South Africa taking the top spot from the Danish team. Matthew WHITEHEAD and Micheal OVENSTONE who were in fourth after the first day found their form on the water with a first and second. Whitehead commented, "It was quite breezy out there on the water with huge waves which is what we like to sail in. We overstood one mark and came screaming in, nearly taking a few boats out! We had a brilliant day."

These sailors are amongst the 29 APP sailors who are helped each year to compete by ISAF and the programme. They get financial backing and an internationally renowned coach in the form of Jim SALTONSTALL (World Youth Sailing Trust coach) to help them throughout the week.

Maja KNEZEVIC (SRB) in the Laser Radial class is another young sailor who has been helped by the APP scheme to represent her country. It is the first time Serbia has competed at the Youth Worlds and she is very proud to be here. "I am loving my time here. Jim is a really great coach and looks after us all, as well as some of the other sailors who need extra help. I just want to do as well as I can," said KNEZEVIC.

The breezy conditions made for plenty more excitement on the 29er course and following three races in both boy's and girl's fleet the British and Australian teams continue to dominate the overall standings. James PETERS and Edward FITZGERALD (GBR) won the opening two races in boy's fleet and although they dropped to tenth in race five after hitting a wave and pitch polling on the final run, they hold the overall lead. Byron WHITE and Rhys MARA (AUS) are just three points behind in second, whilst Judge RYAN and Hans HENKEN (USA) climb five places to third overall and were the standout performers with 2, 3, 1 scores today.

Great Britain also leads the Girl's 29er fleet, with Frances PETERS, James's older sister, and Claire LASKO posting first, second and third place finishes today. After five top-three finishes the pair have built a six-point cushion at the front but are not getting carried away yet. "I am really pleased to get consistent results this early in the competition but we have a long way to go so we have to keep it up. We have to take each day as it comes," said PETERS. It was also a good day for the Dutch crew of Annemiek BEKKERING and Jeske KISTERS, who scored a sixth and two bullets to move up six places to fourth overall.

The 29er fleets had the benefit of a video debrief from Jim SALTONSTALL after yesterday's racing and it certainly showed in the improved performance of some of the teams today. The Brazilian Girl's 29er duo of Martine GRAEL and Daniela ADLER PIMENTEL DUARTE climbed four places up the overall leaderboard to seventh after scores of 3, 4, 5 today. "We've been sailing 29ers for three months and today was only the fourth day of strong winds in our lives. But we're doing well so we're really happy about it," said Daniela. It is no surprise the team are such quick learners when you consider their sailing backgrounds; Martine is the daughter of Volvo Ocean Race skipper and five-time Olympic medallist Torben GRAEL whilst Daniela's uncle is Daniel ADLER, also an Olympic medallist. The next generation are also clearly aware of the family traditions, "The first time they were together they were silver medallists in the Olympics [in the Soling at the 1984 Games in Los Angeles]. The second time maybe, gold!" said Daniela with a twinkle in her eye.

In the Laser Radial class the Australian defending champion Gabrielle KING now leads the pack with a consistent top five positions as the Canadian sailor Isabella BERTOLD falls to second only two points behind. The Finnish competitor, Heidi TENKANEN posted a first and a fifth to raise her from sixth to third overall.

Pavlos KONTIDES (CYP) carries on leading the boy's Laser fleet with another two first places, making it look very easy out on the water in the big breeze. American Luke LAWRENCE also showed consistency with two second places lifting him to second place overall and pushing local Århus sailor, Thorbjoern SCHIERUP into third.

The top three places in the Boy's RS:X fleet have remained the same with the Cypriot windsurfer, Michalis MALEKKIDES posting a first and fourth. This is his second Youth Worlds and he was looking for a top six place before he came but now thinks he can do better. "I worked a lot over the year with my coach to improve on my strength. Especially when it's windy I think I'm very good and in the light wind I do well. I think that the work is paying off now," said MALEKKIDES.

Laura LINARES (ITA) carries on leading the girl's fleet with a second and first place with Poland's Maja DZIARNOWSKA and Greece's Anastasia DAVROU swapping places below her.

Racing continues in Århus tomorrow, with the first races scheduled for a 12:00 local time start.

For Live online tracking of the races from Sportcasting click here

Click here to get the latest video podcast from the Volvo Youth Sailing World Championship

Results - click on the links below for the latest results

Boy's One Person Dinghy - Laser
Girl's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial
Boy's Two Person Dinghy - 29er
Girl's Two Person Dinghy - 29er
Boy's Windsurfer - RS:X
Girl's Windsurfer - RS:X
Multihull - SL16

Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship microsite -

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