After an action packed final day of racing at the Trofeo S.A.R. Princess Sofia MAPFRE, the third of seven ISAF Sailing World Cup Regattas, the overall Standings have been shuffled around with new leaders taking control.
The first gold of the day in Palma, Mallorca, Spain was decided in the 49er fleet. It went to Jonas Warrer and Soren Hansen (DEN), and following their seventh place at US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR they have climbed up to top spot in the ISAF Sailing World Cup 49er Standings. The Danish 49er team is packed full of talented skiff sailors with Allan Norregaard and Peter Lang tied on 33 points with their team mates in the Standings.
The Danes are using the World Cup circuit to see who will head to London 2012, Warrer said, “This win is very important for us and we couldn’t have done better and we are happy about that. The other Danes did quite well as well so it is very close. We are one point ahead with Hyeres the final qualification regatta.”
Lauri Lehtinen and Kalle Bask (FIN) finished 12th in Palma which takes them up to third in the Standings. Ai Kondo and Wakako Tabata (JPN) missed out on Women’s 470 gold by one point as Giulia Conti and Giovanna Micol (ITA) won the Medal Race to leapfrog them. But the Japanese pair top the Women’s 470 Standings after they finished second at Sail Melbourne. Since their first regatta together at Sail Melbourne, Beijing 2008 Women’s 470 gold medallist Elise Rechichi and Sydney 2000 gold medallist Belinda Stowell (AUS) have excelled and moved forward at a rate of knots. The pair are one point off Kondo and Tabata in the Standings.
Kathrin Kadelbach and Friederike Belcher (GER), who won bronze in Palma, sit in third place. Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) continue their excellent form in the Men’s 470 following an 18 point win over Gideon Kliger and Eran Sela (ISR) in Palma. The pair claimed gold at US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR after their gold medal performance at the 2011 ISAF Worlds and silver at Sail Melbourne.
The Australians top the World Cup Standings on 40 points, whilst Stuart McNay and Graham Biehl (USA), who finished out of the points in Palma, remain in second on 37 points. Silver medallists in Palma, Kliger and Sela sit third in the Standings tied on 32 points with Lucas Calabrese and Juan de la Fuente (ARG). Robert Scheidt and Bruno Prada (BRA) are the ones to beat in the Star class following their second consecutive Star gold on the ISAF Sailing World Cup circuit.
The Brazilians blew the competition away in Miami and despite not having it all their way in Palma, they showed why they are the World #1 duo and the favourites for Olympic gold this summer. They lead the Standings on 40 points followed by Xavier Rohart and Pierre Alexis-Ponsot (FRA) on 37 points and Fredrik Loof and Max Salminen (SWE) on 32 points. Alicia Cebrian (ESP) moves into the Laser Radial Standings for the first time following her gold medal performance in Palma. But with the discard coming into play Lijia Xu (CHN) remains on top of the Standings with 40 points. Marit Bouwmeester (NED), who finished third in Palma, and Evi Van Acker (BEL) who took silver, both trail the Chinese Olympic bronze medallist by three points.
Ben Ainslie (GBR) took the Finn honours with a day to spare in Palma, but climbing to the top of the Finn Standings is Zach Railey (USA). The American added second place in Palma to his regatta victory at US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR, and with 39 points he is seven clear of Jonas Hoegh-Christensen (DEN) in second and 14 clear of compatriot Caleb Paine (USA). Meanwhile Ainslie, who was sailing at his first 2011-2012 World Cup regatta in Palma, is sixth. Olivia Price (AUS) has moved to the top of the Women’s Match Racing Standings after another consistent performance. The young Australian defeated Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) in the Petit Final in Palma and tops the Standings with 37 points. 2011 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year,
Anna Tunnicliffe (USA), proved her worth in the final against Claire Leroy (FRA) with a 3-1 victory. She moves into second place in the Standings and US SAILING’s Rolex Miami OCR victor Lucy Macgregor (GBR) is third. And in the Laser, Paul Goodison (GBR) leads the Standings on 39 points after his second place in Palma. With two bronze medals to his name Tom Burton (AUS) holds second place on 36 points and Nick Thompson (GBR) is third on 33 points. Next up for the sailors is the Semaine Olympique Francaise, in Hyéres, France from 21-27 April. With a healthy entry list it will make for another exciting World Cup Regatta as teams prepare for the London 2012 Olympic Sailing Competition