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15 January 2008, 10:33 am
'Big Raffa' Stars At Sail Melbourne
Nathan WILMOT and Malcolm PAGE
Nathan WILMOT and Malcolm PAGE get into some upwind action in the 470

Sail Melbourne 2008
Melbourne, Australia

Day two at the ISAF Grade 1 Sail Melbourne threw up some surprises, with sailing's own 'Big Raffa' making his move in the Finn fleet.
Rafael TRUJILLO may not be Spain's most famous Rafael export; however it doesn't make him any less dominant in his chosen sport than his more famous countryman, tennis superstar Rafael NADAL.

Both Rafael's are in Melbourne with their eyes on the big prize next week, TRUJILLO for the Finn class sailing World title, known as the Finn Gold Cup, and NADAL for the Australian Tennis Open.

TRUJILLO is the reigning Finn World Champion and is preparing for his title defence at Black Rock Yacht Club next week with an impressive start in the Asia Pacific Regatta at the ISAF Grade 1 Sail Melbourne this week at the same venue.

After four races today, the Spaniard is poised in third place overall, just eight points behind Ed WRIGHT (GBR) and three behind Jonas HOEGH-CHRISTENSEN (DEN).

After an average result of 11th in race 3 today, TRUJILLO had a mixed race 4. The affable 32 year old got off to a flyer off the line, only to be turned around in a general recall of the fleet following false starts by many.

He repeated his great start and rounded the windward mark for the first time in the lead pack, but the judges enforced a 720 degree turn on TRUJILLO following an illegal manoeuvre which forced him to lose six or seven places.

"I was racing well and I thought the free pumping flag was still up," TRUJILLO said today.

"I felt like an idiot when I didn't notice it had come down, I should have been concentrating better. But I picked up three boats on the way back and still managed to finish sixth and keep myself in with a chance," he said.

Anthony NOSSITER (AUS) struggled in the light winds today and dropped from fifth to tenth overall after two mid-fleet results.

Four-time World Champion and Athens Olympic gold medallist Ben AINSLIE (GBR) surprisingly dropped down one place today and is now fourth overall. However, this is just the curtain-racer to the main event, where AINSLIE is expected to lift dramatically.

Women's 470

After the second day of racing, Erin MAXWELL and Isabelle KINSOLVING (USA) continue to dominate after placing fifth and 11th. The two, who were not selected to represent USA in Beijing, are thrilled with their results. "It's a new experience. We've never been first overall." MAXWELL said. "We like it."

Conditions on the women's course today were shifty. "Today you needed to be lucky as well as good," MAXWELL said.

"It was also really important to get a good start," KINSOLVING said in reference to the hard shift left on the start of the first race.

The shift benefited Stefanie ROTHWEILER and Vivien KUSSATZ (GER) who said the earlier race, won by them comfortably, was boring. "The wind shifted to the left," ROTHWEILER said. "We never lost a position."

Emmanuelle ROL and Anne-Sophie THILO (SUI) are currently second placed, followed by the German girls, who have been selected to compete in Beijing.

Men's 470

Today World Champions Nathan WILMOT and Malcolm PAGE (AUS) jumped from seventh place to first place overall at Sail Melbourne Asia Pacific Regatta after an impressive day of sailing with a second and first places.

Today's conditions were perfect with 12-15 knots gusting up to 18 knots. "It was pretty cool out. It was good to play the boat rather than strap it down and send it," PAGE said.

In race 4 of the Men's 470 Kan YAMADA and Kenichi NAKAMURA (JPN) were first around the top mark followed closely by Matthias SCHMID and Florian REICHSTAEDTER (AUT) and Geoffrey WOOLLEY and Mark OVERINGTON (NZL).

Down the second leg the Austrians struggled to hold off the New Zealanders. The Japanese gradually extended their lead to win the heat comfortably with the Austrians maintaining second and the New Zealanders coming in a close third.

Going into the third day, Gideon KLIGER and Udi GAL (ISR), ranked #3 in the ISAF World Sailing Rankings, are placed second and 2006 World Champions Nic ASHER and Elliot WILLIS (GBR) are placed third.


Andrew MURDOCH from New Zealand has taken the lead in the Laser class following two races today. However, in a tight series, yesterday's leader Milan VUJASINOVIC (CRO) is only two points away and Maciej GRABOWSKI (POL) is only a further three points away on an equal score with Adonis BOUGIOURIS (GRE).

Things will change somewhat tomorrow. Once race 5 is over, a race drop will come into play and some will move up the leaderboard, including reigning World Champ, Tom SLINGSBY (AUS), whose score of 42 following an OCS in race 2 yesterday will be dropped. It should move the 22 year old into the top three.

SLINGSBY is currently in 32nd place, but with his score card also showing two bullets and a third place following two more races today, he could move into the lead, depending on his scores in tomorrow's two races.

Paul GOODISON (GBR) unexpectedly slid down the board today from second place overall into 11th place after an unlucky 13th in race 4. However, it is likely he will use that for his drop following racing tomorrow.

Sailed out of Royal Brighton Yacht Club, the Lasers enjoyed variable conditions today. "In their first race they had 7-8 knots, but it picked up to 13-15 knots by race 4 this afternoon," said race official David LEROY.

"It was ideal really. The competitors had a pretty good day. They looked happy," he said. LEROY went on to say, "There were the usual couple of general recalls, but it was a pretty straightforward day."

He says there will be more of the same conditions tomorrow, but that winds may go more east. If that happens, the course area will be closer to land and will make for great onshore spectator opportunities off Brighton.

Laser Radial

Sari MULTALA (FIN) has taken the lead from Sarah BLANCK (AUS) in the Laser Radial class following races 3 and 4 this afternoon. MULTALA scored silver at the 2007 ISAF Sailing Worlds Championships and is looking dangerous, posting 6,1 results in races 3 and 4 today.

MULTALA is eight points ahead of Tania ELIAS CALLES (MEX) and 10 in front of third placed Jo ALEH (NZL).

BLANCK, from Melbourne, has dropped to fourth in what she described as "really frustrating for me."

BLANCK told: "I had a bad start in the first race; a really bad start. I had to tack right and the breeze went left and that was that. I finished 16th. Then I was leading downwind to the finish in the second race and Sari overtook me on the way to the finish. I did get a second place, but it was a bit of a disappointing day for me."

However, she can drop her worst score following race 5 tomorrow, and provided she does no worse, will move up the board.

"It was nice sailing though. Nice hiking conditions. Not as windy as yesterday," she said.

Cushla HUME-MERRY (NZL) is the best placed youth woman in the fleet, currently placed 26th overall, with two other youth sailors hot on her heels. Victoria CHAN (SIN) is 27th, a mere two points away, and 2007 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship gold medallist Gabrielle KING (AUS) is third a further 12 points in arrears.


Australian's Darren BUNDOCK and Glenn ASHBY have opened up a healthy five-point lead at the completion of day two Tornado sailing action at the Asia Pacific Regatta.

Sailing in shifty wind conditions off host venue Sandringham Yacht Club, BUNDOCK and ASHBY enjoyed line honours in race 3 and managed to cross the line in fourth place in race 4.

"We don't mind a bit of anything really … the conditions don't really bother us, but if we had a whole regatta like today, it would be pretty frustrating," ASHBY said this evening.

"We don't mind a bit of a mixture [of conditions] throughout the regatta - it gives everyone a chance to go well in any given conditions," he said.

Reigning world champions Fernando ECHAVARRI and Anton PAZ (ESP) found conditions a little more trying, but remained optimistic.

"We did not sail very well today - it was quite tricky conditions - we couldn't find the right way to go," ECHAVARRI admitted.

"In the first race we thought it was paying right, but it paid left. It is not frustrating because we are here training," he added.

After an eighth and a 12th today, ECHAVARRI and PAZ are in fourth place overall, behind Andrey KIRILYUK and Valery USHKOV (RUS) in second position and Leigh MCMILLAN and Will HOWDEN (GBR) in third.

2.4 Metre

Peter RUSSELL (AUS) has edged ever so slightly clear of disabled compatriot Peter THOMPSON (AUS) after day two in the 2.4 Metre class at host venue Sandringham Yacht Club today.

Both sailors enjoyed line honours once each after races 3 and 4 with conditions particularly ideal in the latter race.

THOMPSON said the wind was barely blowing 4 knots for the first race of the day, but got up to about 6-8 knots for the second.

"When the wind picked up it was beautiful sailing. You could really concentrate on enjoying your sailing," the Paralympian said after winning race 4.

Aaron HILL (AUS) is three points back in third place overall with Colin BROWN (AUS) starting to make things difficult for himself a further nine points back in fourth place.


Disabled sailors Amy BARNBROOK and Leigh DUNSTAN (AUS) relished the balmy conditions at host venue Sandringham Yacht Club today with a first and second place in the SKUD18 skiff on day two of the Asia Pacific Regatta.

That result has elevated the pair into equal first position with son and father combination Duncan and Peter MACGREGOR after four of the scheduled ten qualifying races.

Just one point behind in outright third place is local son and father combination Morgan and David STALEY (AUS). Trailing by six points in fourth position is Desiree LIM and Tan JOVIN (SIN).

Men's Laser Radial

Australians fill the top five positions after day two of the Asia Pacific Regatta Men's Laser Radial class at Royal Brighton Yacht Club.

Greg ADAMS (AUS) has skipped to a two point lead at the top of the table after race 4 was completed today.

ADAMS won the first three races and finished seventh in the final race of the day today to be on 10 points overall, with John JAGGER (AUS) second on 12 points and Klade HAUSCHILDT (AUS), sailing in the youth class, a further five points in arrears in third position. A good result for the youngster.

Due to insufficient breeze earlier in the day, racing, set to start from midday, got underway late from Sandringham Yacht Club, forcing those set to start at 14:00 to start later.

The Women's 470 crews started to dwindle ashore around 18:15, the first Tornado did not hit the beach until 19:15.

Sail Melbourne -
Results - click here

Di Pearson (As Amended By ISAF)
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