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19 February 2008, 10:09 am
Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland Concludes
Darren BUNDOCK and Glenn ASHBY
Darren BUNDOCK and Glenn ASHBY dominated the Tornado competition in Auckland

Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland 2008
Auckland, New Zealand

Sail Auckland concluded with the international sailors winning gold in the hotly contested Laser Radial, Tornado, Women's and Men's RS:X classes.
Light shifty winds on all the courses challenged sailors on the final morning of the ISAF Grade 1 event, while an ENE breeze filled in mid afternoon reaching up to 15 knots at times.

Sari MULTALA of Finland took out the women's Laser Radial class after dominating for the duration of the four-day regatta. While not her best day on the water today, coming home 20th in the first race of the day and then crossing in fourth in the Medal Race, MULTALA had done enough to win comfortably. She finished up 22 points clear of second placed sailor Lijia XU of China.

MULTALA, who won silver at the 2007 ISAF Sailing World Championships in Portugal has demonstrated here that she's in hot form in the lead-up to the 2008 Women's Laser Radial World Champs which are now less than one month away to be sailed off Takapuna Beach.

XU also had a poor first race today finishing in 37th place, however this became her discard and after coring the line in fifth in the Medal Race she secured the silver here today. Anna TUNNICLIFFE (USA) was strong on the water today winning race 11 this morning and then coming home second in the Medal Race to take the bronze medal.

Local sailor, world #1 and New Zealand's Olympic representative, Jo ALEH started the day with a shot at a podium finish but that slipped away after a 29th in the first race of the day. She ended up in sixth place overall with fellow Kiwi Sara WINTHER sailing a strong regatta to finish in eighth place.

Predictably Darren BUNDOCK and Glenn ASHBY of Australia today won gold in the Tornado fleet after being stand-out leaders throughout the four-day regatta. A win in the Medal Race today put the icing on the cake for the Aussies who look formidable ahead of the World Champs starting next week off Takapuna.

Roland GAEBLER and Gunnar STRUCKMANN of Germany have brought in one of their best results of the season winning the silver medal in Auckland today, particularly given the strength of the fleet. They finished up 17 points behind BUNDOCK and ASHBY but also had a comfortable 13-point margin over bronze medal winners Fernando ECHAVARRI and Anton PAZ of Spain.

Top finishers for New Zealand were Aaron MCINTOSH and Mark KENNEDY, who concluded the regatta in 12th place. The Kiwis were one place ahead of reigning Olympic Champs and recent winners of the New Zealand National Champs Roman HAGARA and Hans Peter STEINACHER of Austria, who finished 13th.

Overnight leaders in the Women's and Men's RS:X windsurfing were both able to secure gold on the final day today. Marina ALABAU (ESP), who won bronze at the recent 2008 World Champs topped the women's fleet here at Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland winning gold today in Auckland.

Barbara KENDALL (NZL) managed to finish strongly and pick up the silver medal after starting the day laying third overall. She won the final double-points Medal Race today after a tight battle with ALABAU on the water. Romy KINZL of Germany had to settle for the bronze.

Over in the Men's RS:X it was Nikos KAKLAMANAKIS of Greece who won gold in style today by crossing first in the final double-points Medal Race.

Just one point separated silver and bronze with local windsurfer Jon-Paul TOBIN getting the better of world #1 João RODRIGUES (POR) on the final day. TOBIN was third in the Medal Race, while RODRIGUES was fifth, not close enough to take the silver, which went to TOBIN.

The prizegiving will take place later this evening. The Tornado sailors now have a short rest before the Tornado World Championships kick off with a practice race next Sunday and racing proper on Monday.

Results - click here
Singapore Airlines Sail Auckland - www.sailauckland.org.nz
Jodie Bakewell-White (As Amended by ISAF)
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