Four Way Radial Battle On The Horizon
Lijia Xu (CHN) holds the Radial lead but it all boils down to the Medal Race
London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition
Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain
One point separates Lijia Xu (CHN), Marit Bouwmeester (NED), Annalise Murphy (IRL) and Evi Van Acker (BEL) ahead of the Laser Radial Medal Race.
Beijing 2008 bronze medallist Xu hit the right note in the final day of fleet racing winning Race 9 and backing it up with a second in Race 10 to move from fourth to first overall.
Several black flags were seen today but the leaders were conservative at the start and relied on their speed. "I just follow my strategy to be more conservative on the start," said Xu. "You can't take any risks, just be consistent and conservative. Just sail the best. I just wanted to enjoy it."
It'll be anyone's game in the Medal Race and Bouwmeester, currently in second and Race 10 winner, has her eyes on the ultimate prize. "I think there's only one medal that counts," said Bouwmeester, "and that's the same for everyone. It's going to be a bitch fight all the way to the end."
Murphy had led early on in the Radial which has put her in strong contention for the medals, "To be in a position where I can attack in a medal race, that's great," said the Irish girl. "I wanted to finish in the top 10 and I feel I've achieved so much more than that already."
With such a small margin between the top four boats Murphy added that match racing is out of the question and it'll be a winner takes all scenario, "It's just another race. We are not going to match race each other. We are all so close on points. I am hoping I can shake things up a bit on Monday."
The Radial Medal Race takes place at 13:00 on the Nothe Course on Monday 6 August.
1. Lijia Xu (CHN) - 33pts
2. Marit Bouwmeester (NED) - 33pts
3. Annalise Murphy (IRL) - 34pts
4. Evi Van Acker (BEL) - 34pts
5. Alison Young (GBR) - 52pts
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