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2 April 2003, 05:03 pm
History in the Making
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OK World Championship
Goa

It was not long ago that an Indian had never won a race at the OK Dinghy World Championship, then Nitin Mongia won one race, then he won 2, today against all odds, Nitin Mongia won 2 more races and stands on the threshold of winning the World Championship
The day dawned blazing hot as usual for this time of year in Goa and the water surface was glassy as the competitors arrived at the venue for racing today.

When Principal Race Officer Cdr. Homi Motivala went afloat to set his course the wind was under 4 knots and swinging through 90 degrees. After a delay of one hour the wind finally seemed to settle at 235 degrees and built up to around 6-8 knots. It stayed at the same velocity through the day but ended the day further right at 250 degrees.

RACE 4:

With about a minute to go, the start line seemed to be biased slightly to starboard. Nitin Mongia and Nick Craig took conservative starts at the middle of the line. Nick tacked off at the first opportunity to go to the right hand side, Nitin stayed on starboard tack and the wind swung to the left. Nitin then tacked and stayed in phase with the wind throughout lead comfortably at the Windward mark from Paul Rhodes and Rudiger Prinz. Nick Craig who seemed out of phase through the beat rounded mid fleet. Nitin who had built up a bit of a lead sailed clear while the other boats fought amongst themselves.

At the finish, Nitin won comfortably from Rudiger Prinz who took advantage of a shift from the right to finish 2nd followed by Paul Rhodes. Nick Craig sailed through the fleet to finish 4th.

RACE 5:

It was an even start off an even starting line, Sonke Berebs from Germany was the last boat at the Committee end while Greg Wilcox was the first boat off at the Port end, Once again Nitin and Nick Craig took conservative starts with Nick tacking off. again and Nitin staying on starboard. The shift Nitin was looking for did not materialize and he had to tack off and duck behind Nick, Nick immediately tacked on him and forced Nitin to tack back, that did not phase Nitin who refocused himself and held a narrow lead at the windward mark from Nickj Craig and Paul Rhodes. They held their positions around the leeward mark and split tacks on the second beat, Paul Rhodes who was on the right sailed through Nick (on the left ) and Nitin (playing the center) to round the windward mark 1st followed by Nitin and Nick. Nitin however took advantage of his superior downwind speed to round the leeward mark ahead of Paul Rhodes. Nitin then powered away to win his 5th consecutive race. Ben Morrison came out of the right side to take 2nd . Ben is the current New Zealand OK Dingy champion. He was followed by Paul Rhodes and Nick Craig in 4th.

In the meantime, a request from Nick Craig for reopening yesterdays protest is being considered by the jury at 1900 hrs today. Anyhow, there is one race scheduled for tomorrow which should decide the final outcome of the championship more or less.

Top Ten Overall (After 5 Races/1 Discard)

Pos Nation Helm R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 Total
1 IND Nitin Mongia 1 1 1 1 1 4
2 GBR Nick Craig 2 2 3 5 4 11
3 NZL Ben Morrison 3 4 4 4 2 13
4 NZL Paul Rhodes OCS 9 5 3 3 20
5 NZL Greg Willcox 7 6 2 10 6 21
6 GER Rudiger Prinz 4 12 10 2 7 23
7 NZL Joe Porebski 5 3 6 9 12 23
8 NZL Rob Coutts 6 7 13 6 5 24
9 GER Hans Elkjer 9 8 7 7 10 31
10 GER James MacAlistair 8 5 9 13 14 35
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