Italy continue to top both men's and women's standings after day two at the 470 Worlds, although treble World Champs Marcelien DE KONING and Lobke BERKHOUT closed in on the leaders.
Dutch 470 Women's World Champions Marcelien DE KONING
and Lobke BERKHOUT
edged one step closer to a fourth consecutive crown today at the Sail Melbourne event being raced out of Mordialloc Sailing Club.
DE KONING and BERKHOUT have nosed their way into second position overall on 12 points, following three more qualifying races on day two of competition.
Regatta organizers, fearing a lack of wind tomorrow, threw in a third previously unscheduled race late this afternoon, allowing the affable Dutch crew to bump Aussie contenders Elise RECHICHI
and Tessa PARKINSON
out of second place by one point.
Italian fliers Giulia CONTI
and Giovanna MICOL
continue to lead the fleet, with another outstanding performance on the water. CONTI and MICOL teamed a win in race 1 yesterday, with another in race 5 today, to sit three points clear on top of the table.
Following the five races, all crews have now dropped their worst result, allowing RECHICHI and PARKINSON to shed a ninth place from today's final race, one which they would probably prefer to forget.
"It's good to have a solid start - it's hard mentally but it's completely do-able to come back from a bad first day but it's hard mentally, so it's good to have a good first few days,"
the petite RECHICHI said.
"Today wasn't brilliant but it was certainly solid enough… in the third race we had an okay start but then I think we almost sailed to the Antarctica.
"We went way left, which is not what we normally do but we lost our opportunity to go back to the right … we couldn't tack and then when we could tack the wind had shifted and it was too late, so we just had to be patient.
"It was either going to be a brilliant move or horrid and unfortunately it was horrid,"
Japanese crew Ai KONDO
and Naoko KAMATA
have elevated themselves into contention after dropping a 19th placing in race 1 and backing it up with four solids finishes to be in fourth place overall on 16 points.
In the men's fleet, Gabrio ZANDONA and Andrea TRANI (ITA) are still leading the regatta on nine points after the second day of racing. The Italian world #7 ranked pairing could not quite match their form from yesterday, but 8,3,3 scores still kept them top of the overall standings.
"Today we had really good speed but the main problem was that we made several bad tactical choices," ZANDONA said.
Just behind the Italians, the British crews of Nic ASHER and Elliot WILLIS (GBR) and Nick ROGERS and Joe GLANFIELD (GBR) are just one point apart.
"There isn't much in it between the winners." ROGERS, Olympic silver medallist in Athens four years ago, said.
"We're happy how we're sailing," WILLIS, 2006 World Champion, said. "We're getting a nice change in conditions. We like to get a mixture. We're a jack-of-all-trades."
Further back, defending World Champions Nathan WILMOT and Malcolm PAGE (AUS) had a disappointing day with 12,3,17 scores leaving them 12th overall.
Racing will resume tomorrow at 13:00 hours.
Results - click here
470 World Championships - www.sailmelbourne.com.au/event/470worldchampionships2008