It was another challenging day for all competitors racing on the penultimate day of the Trofeo SAR Princesa Sofia Mapfre on the bay of Palma with big windshifts causing a number of races to be abandoned.
The first medals of the regatta were decided in the 2.4m class which saw Dutch sailor Thierry Schmitter
claim gold ahead of Britain's Helena Lucas
with Dutch competitors also claiming third and fourth spots. Sixth place for Paul Tingley
(CAN) maintains his lead in the ISAF Sailing World Cup standings but Schmitter has closed the gap and moved up to second overall. Top five finishes from Barend Kol
(NED) in fourth and Megan Pascoe
(GBR) in fifth tie them on points.
After another long day on the water the remaining fleets raced for the top ten Medal Race slots and the points remain very close. In the Men's 470 fleet Pierre Leboucher
and Vincent Garos
(FRA) hold a two point lead over previous leaders, Gideon Kliger
and Eran Sela
or Israel. Australian's Matt Mathew Belcher
and Malcolm Page
trail another 12 points behind in third.
It's even closer in the Women's 470 fleet where Ingrid Petitjean
and Nadège Douroux
(FRA) are tied on points with Italy's Giulia Conti
and Giovanna Micol
. These two teams are now 25 points ahead of a second French team of Emmanuelle Rol
and Hélène Defrance
French and British sailors dominate the top places in the 49er fleet. Emmanuel Dyen
and Stéphane Christidis
(FRA) have opened up a 15 point lead over Stevie Morrison
and Ben Rhodes
(GBR). Skandia Team GBR team mates Chris Draper
and Peter Greenhalgh
lost ground, having been black flagged in the day's first race and remain in third but still well clear of the chasing pack.
(GBR) closed the gap on the Finn class leader Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic
of Croatia with two bullets. Jonathan Lobert
(FRA) is right on their heels. It was a disappointing day for local Spanish sailor Rafa Trujillo
who dropped to fourth. All the top contenders suffered a shocker in the final race of the day creating an exciting medal race prospect.
"Today was a really tough day, but tomorrow will be even more so with four of us fighting it out for the medals,"
said Wright. "I haven't had to wear a bib all week, but it will be nice to go into the medal race tomorrow wearing one."
In the Laser class Spain's Javier Hernandez
holds a nine point advantage over second placed Tonci Stipanovic
(CRO) while Mike Bullot (NZL) and Nick Thompson
(GBR) are tied on points for third place. Only six points separate second to sixth places.
It's a tight battle between the European sailors in the Laser Radial class where Tina Mihelic
from Croatia will fight for gold with the Czech Republic's Veronika Fenclová
. Spain's Susana Romero
holds a comfortable podium position in third.
The competition is also close in the Star where Italy's past European champions Diego Negri
and Ferdinando Colaninno
lead by just three points from Switzerland's Flavio Marazzi
and Enrico De Maria
, theselves a point in front of Sweden's past World Champions, Fredrik Loof
and Johan Tillander.
In the Womens Match Racing sailed in the Elliott 6's Nicky Souter
's Australian team defeated Britain's Lucy Macgregor
in the semi-finals to advance to a race off against Renee Groeneveld
's Dutch team for the gold medal. Groeneveld won her semi-final match over Sally Barkow
's US team. The final is a best of five, while Macgregor will fight it out with Barkow for bronze.
The 41st Trofeo SAR Princesa Sofia MAPFRE will be held in Mallorca from 27 March-2 April, organized by four clubs of the bay of Palma (Club Nàutic S'Arenal, Real Club Náutico de Palma, Club Marítimo San Antonio de la Playa and Escuela Nacional de Vela Calanova), as well as the Real Federación Española de Vela and the Federación Balear de Vela, together with the Govern de les Illes Balears, the Consell de Mallorca and Palma and Llucmajor city councils. The collaborators of the Trofeo SAR Princesa Sofia Mapfre are the Consejo Superior de Deportes, the Federación Española de Deportes de Personas con Discapacidad Física, the Ports Authority, Ports de les Illes Balears, the coastal department of the Ministry of Environment and companies Ultramar Express and Acciona.
For more on the 41st Trofeo SAR Princesa Sofia MAPFRE including the latest results visit www.trofeoprincesasofia-mapfre.org.
For the latest news, photos and videos, as well as Standings, event details and more, visit the ISAF Sailing World Cup website at www.sailing.org/worldcup.