London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition
Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain
Ben Ainslie (GBR) brought Jonas Hogh-Christensen's (DEN) ten point lead down to three on an exciting day of Finn racing that didn't escape the drama.
Ainslie won Race 7 convincingly despite early pressure from Rafa Trujillo (ESP) and Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) later on in the race. The Dane was unable to keep up with Ainslie's downwind speed and midway through the race the Dane capsized and slipped to 15th, but was able to recover to finish eighth. Hogh Christensen said, "There was big waves and strong breeze and a second of not paying attention and hitting a bad wave you capsize."
In Race 8 Ainslie did a penalty turn after the third mark but it was not without its controversies, "The Dutch and the Danish guys basically teamed up against me to claim I hit the mark when I didn't. So I was pretty pissed off with that at this level. I had no option but to take a turn because in the protest room for sure I would lose. It has made me pretty angry to make amends tomorrow. It's sport, at this level they're going to take any advantage they can. I don't particularly appreciate it as I didn't hit the mark but maybe their time will come."
But with each story there are always two sides. On claims that Postma and him teamed up on Ainslie the Dane replied, "That is a hard allegation. I don't think anybody teams up to call somebody on that. I saw him hit the mark. I think the Dutch guy saw him hit the mark. Two guys seeing the same guy hit the mark is probably because he hit the mark.
"He decided to do what he had to do and took his penalty. If he was so sure he didn't hit the mark, why did he take a penalty then?"
Ainslie recovered to finish third ahead of the Hogh Christensen further reducing the gap and with a lot on the line and tensions flaring the remainder of Finn sailing will make for fascinating viewing.
The Finns resume tomorrow at 12:00 local time on the Weymouth Bay South course.
1. Jonas Hogh-Christensen (DEN) - 18pts
2. Ben Ainslie (GBR) - 21pts
3. Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic (CRO) - 34pts
4. Jonathan Lobert (FRA) - 37pts
5. Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) - 39pts
Follow all the action on the ISAF Olympic Live Blog which will bring competition updates and instant reactions to the action on the race course. Fans can check in and ask our media team questions to get the very latest information. The blog will start one hour before racing each and every day of the competition.
ISAF Olympic Website