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Displaying items by tag: olympic sailing

The National Yacht Club's Finn Lynch was best of the Irish Olympic Sailing Team at the World Cup Series event in Enoshima, Japan yesterday, finishing 28th from 59 boats in the men's Laser class after four races on Tokyo 2020 Olympic waters.

10-20 knot shifty winds and two bad starts made for tricky sailing for the Carlow native.

In the Women's Laser Radial class, Howth's Aoife Hopkins in 34th place leads Lough Derg's Radial National Champion Aisling Keller in 41st in a fleet of 53. 

The single Irish 49er of Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle lie 19th from 27 after six races sailed.

Full results are here.

As the dust just about settles on the Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus 2018, many of the newly-crowned World Champions continue their form at the World Cup Series event in Enoshima, Japan.

The 2018 World Cup Series Enoshima is the first to be held on the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition field of play, and competitors who have succeeded on Olympic waters ahead of the Games often achieve glory come showtime.

Out of the 466 sailors from 44 nations, the World Champions crowned in Aarhus have come to the forefront once again, suggesting that their talents and racing know-how can be seemingly transferred from one venue to the next.

Racing continued at 11:40 today.

Top three by class after day one:

470 Men
1. Keiju Okada / Jumpei Hokazono, JPN, 7 points
2. Naoki Ichino / Takashi Hasegawa, JPN, 10
3. Kevin Peponnet / Jeremie Mion, FRA, 11

470 Women
1. Benedetta Di Salle Alessandra Dubbini, ITA, 7
2. Afrodite Zegers / Anneloes van Veen, NED, 7
3.Elena Berta / Bianca Caruso, ITA, 9

49er Men
1. Dylan Fletcher-Scott / Stuart Bithell, GBR, 3
2. Lukasz Przybytek / Pawel Kolodzinski, POL, 5
3. James Peters / Fynn Sterritt, GBR, 7

49erFX Women
1. Martine Soffiatti Grael / Kahena Kunze, BRA, 3
2. Alexandra Maloney / Molly Meech, NZL, 4
3. Ida Marie Baad Nielsen / Marie Thusgaard Olsen, DEN, 4

Finn Men
1. Giles Scott, GBR, 7
2. Josh Junior, NZL, 8
3. Edward Wright, GBR, 10

Laser Men
1. Michael Beckett, GBR, 10
2. Philipp Buhl, GER, 11
3. Matthew Wearn, AUS, 15

Laser Radial Women
1. Emma Plasschaert, BEL, 8
2. Sarah Douglas, CAN, 12
3. Josefin Olsson, SWE, 16

NACRA 17
1. Ruggero Tita / Caterina Marianna Banti, ITA, 2
2. Vittorio Bissaro / Maelle Frascari, ITA, 4
3. Gemma Jones / Jason Saunders, NZL, 5

RS:X Men
1. Mattia Camboni, ITA, 2
2. Kiran Badloe, NED, 4
3. Pierre Le Coq, FRA, 7

RS:X Women
1. Lilian De Geus, NED, 2
2. Peina Chen, CHN, 4
3. Charline Picon, FRA, 5

Published in Tokyo 2020
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An Irish team of three Lasers (two women and one man) and a single 49er pair get their first taste of the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition venue in Enoshima, Japan this week when the harbour will host sailors for the first event of the 2019 World Cup Series.

Following the Hempel Sailing World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark, (where unfortunately Ireland was unable to qualify for Tokyo in any class) the sailors are continuing their journey to the 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition.

Out in Japan representing Ireland are Radial rivals Aoife Hopkins and Aisling Keller (the new Radial Champion), Finn Lynch in the Laser Standard and the Belfast-Cork 49er duo Ryan Seaton and Seafra Guilfoyle.

Enoshima will welcome sailors in just under two years’ time for the Olympic Games and for many, the World Cup will be their first opportunity to learn about the Olympic venue.

Events held on Olympic waters are often strong indicators of what to expect at the Olympic Games.

Annalise Murphy

Following the London 2012 test event in 2011, 17 medallists went on to clinch an Olympic medal, while at the Aquece Rio 2015, Rio 2016’s sailing test event, 16 medallists achieved an Olympic medal a year later.

Of course, as regular readers of Afloat.ie will know, this was not the case for then Radial sailor Annalise Murphy in Rio. The Dubliner had to wait until the cusp of the Games itself when she won a pre-Olympic regatta only weeks before delivering her famous silver medal result, building so magnificently on her fourth overall from London 2012.

Two years later, Murphy is out of the Radial class and heading for a brand new challenge in a double-handed campaign. She is not in Tokyo with new sailing partner Katie Tingle but Belfast Lough organisers say her 49erfx campaign will debut at Ballyholme Yacht Club's 'Speed' event later this month. 

The fleets in Enoshima feature many of the leading racers who will be aiming to reign supreme and set a benchmark. Eight of the World Champions crowned in Aarhus are racing and will be joined by more than 450 sailors from 45 nations. More than 30 Olympic medallists are also competing.

Ruggero Tita and Caterina Banti (ITA) have been unbeatable in the Nacra 17 in 2018, winning two World Cup events as well as the World Championships.

In Aarhus, the scene was set for a memorable Medal Race as the Italians led by a narrow margin over Nathan and Haylee Outteridge (AUS), Santiago Lange and Cecilia Carranza Saroli (ARG) and Lin Ea Cenholt and Christian Peter Lübeck (DEN) who were all in contention for gold.

However, a consistent breeze failed to materialise, handing the Italians the world title. The four teams will pick up where they left off in Enoshima, renewing their rivalry in a bid to show who has what it takes on Olympic waters for the first time.

Billy Besson and Marie Riou (FRA) make a return to the World Cup Series, following Riou’s successful adventure on-board Dongfeng Race Team during the Volvo Ocean Race. Besson and Riou were the unprecedented favourites for Rio 2016 gold two years ago, but Besson sustained a back injury that severely impacted his performance. The pair won all four World Championships in the Rio quad and will once again be a team to be feared.

Further contenders in the Nacra 17 fleet include Rio 2016 silver medallists Jason Waterhouse and Lisa Darmanin (AUS), Ben Saxton and Nicola Boniface (GBR), Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders (NZL) and Bora Gulari and Louisa Chafee (USA).

Over the last seven years, Giles Scott (GBR) has raced at 26 international competitions in the Finn. He has won 23 of those, narrowly missing out on gold in the remaining three and settling for silver. After some months off to focus on the British America’s Cup project, he returns to the Finn fleet in Enoshima.

Many of Scott’s victories in recent years have been comprehensive but the 21-boat fleet in Enoshima has significant strength in depth. Jorge Zarif (BRA), Tapio Nirkko (FIN), Jonathan Lobert (FRA), Ed Wright (GBR), Nicholas Heiner (NED), Caleb Paine (USA) and Max Salminen (SWE) all have what it takes to stop Scott in his tracks.

Pavlos Kontides (CYP), 2018 World Champion, will spearhead the 59-boat Laser fleet, the largest in Enoshima. Rio 2016 medallists Tom Burton (AUS), Tonci Stipanovic (CRO) and Sam Meech (NZL) will also sail in the fleet.

Belgium’s newly-crowned Laser Radial World Champion, Emma Plasschaert, will be joined by Rio 2016 gold medallist Marit Bouwmeester (NED) in the 54-boat pack. Both sailors will be vying for the podium, as will Anne-Marie Rindom (DEN), Alison Young (GBR) and Paige Railey (USA).

The Netherlands dominated in the RS:X competition in Aarhus, winning gold in the men’s and women’s fleets. Both Dorian van Rijsselberghe and Lilian de Geus will be in Enoshima with strong competition around them in their respective fleets.

Annemiek Bekkering and Annette Duetz won a third gold for the Netherlands in Aarhus and they will race in the 24-boat 49erFX fleet that also features Rio 2016 gold medallists Martine Grael and Kahena Kunze (BRA). In the 49er, 26-teams will race.

The Men’s and Women’s 470 fleets will feature 32 and 23 teams respectively.

Racing starts at 11:00 local time on Tuesday 11 September. The Men’s and Women’s RS:X, 49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 competition will conclude on Saturday 15 September with their Medal Races and the Laser, Laser Radial, 470s and Finn will wrap up on Sunday 16.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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Dublin Skiff sailors Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove have won the 49er Under–23 Junior World title in Marseille, France.

In a final race climax, the Howth and Skerries pairing won the last race from a chasing pack in the 52-boat fleet.

The duo, both aged 19, who previously topped the 420 class in Ireland before moving up to the Olympic 49er, showed very consistent form during the five-day event on the Cote D'Azur with seven results from nine races in the top five.

Robert dickson Sean WaddiloveGold Medal Winners - Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove in control in big breeze in France Photo: 49er class

Dickson and Waddilove went into today’s final round as overnight leaders and really held their nerve despite gear failure in race ten that saw them slip to ninth.

However, they recovered superbly to prevail in the subsequent final race of the series and secure gold, Ireland's first ever win in the skiff class at this age group.

It's all a long way from February 2017 when the pair were down after injury to Waddilove threatened their Tokyo 2020 campaign progress

The win continues a top Irish junior season after Liam Glynn took home a bronze medal in the U21 Laser World Championships in July.

Overall results are here

Additional reportage from 49er.org

The only fleet to get out this afternoon was the 49er Gold Fleet, as the Mistral that has been with us the past three days continued at full strength. Six teams were within eight points of the leader at the start of the final race, so saying it was anyone’s regatta is no understatement!

Robert DICKSON and Seán WADDILOVE (IRL) sealed the victory by winning the last race. The overnight leaders started at the boat, caught the first shift off the cliffs and after a couple more tacks up the beat consolidated and extended in victory to seal the championship.

Locked in a tie after the series, it is Max STINGELE and Linov SCHEEL (GER) that edged out Daniel NYBORG and Sebastian WRIGHT OLSEN (DEN) based on winning the countback on the strength of their gold fleet win in the first race of the day.

The German had the best day on the water, with a 1, 5, and were all smiles after coming back to shore. In between the two races, when it was still unclear if the RC would run a second race or not, skipper Max could be seen physically ramping up his energy level with a series of shouts and leg slaps to be sure hey was up for the occasion. They were not able to replicate their commanding win from the first race, but sailed very well when it mattered most.

Third place is a decent consolation prize for the Danes but they will be kicking themselves for an error in the first race that cost them the championship. In third place down the first run they capsized in their gybe. They weren’t overly under pressure, and they probably make that gybe 7 times out of 10, but not that time.

They were not the only contenders to capsize in the moment, as so did fourth overall’s Bart LAMBRIEX and Scipio HOUTMAN (NED). It took them an age to get the boat back upright, and they could only recover to 15th, a hammer blow since they already had a 19th on their scorecard while the rest of the fleet all had lower discard races.

There were no moments of rest for any of the fleet for the duration of the session. The breeze and seas were right on the limit for the afternoons racing, but ultimately most the gold fleet acquitted themselves nicely in the challenging conditions.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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Following the conclusion of Men’s and Women’s One Person Dinghy – Laser / Laser Radial and Women’s Skiff – 49erFX fleet racing at the Hempel Sailing World Championships, the first nations in those fleets have booked their spot at Tokyo 2020. Ireland did not qualify in any class so Irish Team management will be following the allocation of places carefully given the next opportunity to qualify is not until 2019, a year before the Games itself.

In the Laser and Radial, 14 and 18 places respectively were available in Aarhus. In the 49erFX there were eight places available.

Subject to final notification from World Sailing after the event to the relevant Member National Authority / National Olympic Committee, the following nations have qualified:

49erFX
Australia
Austria
Brazil
Denmark
Great Britain
Netherlands
New Zealand
Norway

Within the 60-boat fleet, 25 nations were represented.

Laser
Australia
Brazil
Croatia
Cyprus
Estonia
Finland
France
Germany
Great Britain
New Zealand
Norway
Peru
South Korea
USA

Sixty-five nations were represented in the 165 boat fleet, the largest in Aarhus.

Laser Radial
Belgium
Canada
China
Denmark
Finland
France
Germany
Great Britain
Greece
Hungary
Italy
Netherlands
Norway
Poland
Switzerland
Sweden
Turkey
USA

Out of 119 entrants in the Radial, 53 nations were represented.

Japanese sailors were represented in all fleets so as host nation, receive an entry into every Tokyo 2020 Olympic sailing event.

About the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition Qualification System

The World Championships is the principal qualification event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games with 101 places, 40% of the total quota in the ten Olympic sailing disciplines, up for grabs.

Six places will be available in the Men's and Women's One Person Dinghy following the 2018 Asian Games and 2019 Pan Am Games.

Class Association World Championships in 2019 will see the awarding of 61 places and throughout the remainder of 2019, moving into 2020, Continental Qualification events will be held to decide the remaining 68 places.

Two Men's One Person Dinghy and two Women's One Person Dinghy spots will be awarded to eligible National Olympic Committees (NOC) through the Tripartite Commission Invitation Places. The International Olympic Committee will invite eligible NOCs on 14 October 2019 to apply for these places.

Each NOC may enter a maximum of one boat per event, a total of 15 athletes (eight men and seven women) at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Sailing Competition.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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The Irish Olympic Sailing Team is to 'carefully review' its plans after failing to qualify for Tokyo 2020 in any of the four classes it contested at this week's Sailing World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.

It was expected at least two qualification places would have been earned at the championships where 40% of all Tokyo berths were up for grabs but the decision to reduce the number of Olympic places being determined at Aarhus from 50% to just 40% meant the steep qualification slope got even steeper for the young Irish team.

"There's no denying our disappointment that Ireland didn't qualify in any of the classes for Tokyo 2020 at this first attempt though this belies just how promising some of the individual performances actually were over the past week," commented James O'Callaghan, Irish Sailing Performance Director. "The average age of the squad is 21 and while we will carefully review our approach to Tokyo, we still expect that these sailors will continue to improve over the coming months."

After eight days of competition, the 14 Irish sailors at the Hempel Sailing World Championships in Denmark have ended their individual events. In spite of several strong performances including individual race wins, Ireland will have to wait for the next opportunity to qualify for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics.

In general terms, in six of the ten Olympic events, a finish in the top eight places overall was rewarded with a place in the 2020 Olympic Regatta in Aarhus.

The exceptions were the two single handers - the Laser and Laser Radial - which get 14 spots for the Men and 18 for the Women but even this turned out to be too steep for Ireland.

After several days of unsettled weather and light winds, near perfect sailing conditions greeted the sailors on the Bay of Aarhus today with competitions concluded in the Laser and Laser Radial Gold fleets as well as the 49er Silver and Bronze fleets where most of the Irish sailors have been competing.

Ireland’s best hope for qualifying for Tokyo at the event was Finn Lynch of the National Yacht Club competing in the Men’s Laser event and he ended his ten-race series with a creditable performance when he placed ninth out of 58 boats in the single race that concluded the delayed schedule.

Despite winning Race 7 in the Gold fleet, he missed qualification by about 20 points as he carried two mid-forties results after he was disqualified from Race 8 for a premature start. Yet, in all this, his score sheet shows three top ten results and that must be seen as trending positively two years out from the Games.

Wednesday also saw another Gold fleet race victory for Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins that hinted at similar to come as her senior career develops. She discarded the last race of ten-race series today (Thursday) to finish in 50th place overall.

In the Silver and Bronze fleets in three other events for Irish boats, there was a long day afloat as the Men’s 49er skiff event caught up on its weather-delayed schedule but was concluded in a four-race day. London and Rio veteran Ryan Seaton of Ballyholme Yacht Club, now paired with Séafra Guilfoyle of the Royal Cork Yacht Club ended their event in 36th place overall following sixth and second places today 

Robert Dickson of Howth Yacht Club with Sean Waddilove from Skerries Sailing Club racing in the Silver fleet placed 53rd overall and best of the Development Academy crews. Sean and Tadgh Donnelly from the National Yacht Club picked places in the overall standings thanks to first and second places on the final day and ended 71st overall. Mark Hassett from Baltimore Sailing Club and Oisin O'Driscoll from Schull Harbour Sailing Club placed 75th out of the 86 entries in the class.

Amongst the single-handers, Liam Glynn from Ballyholme Yacht Club finished in 93rd place overall out of 165 Lasers while Aisling Keller from Lough Derg Yacht Club was 85th out of 119 Laser Radials.

In the Finn class that ended fleet racing yesterday, Baltimore Sailing Club's Fionn Lyden was finished second in the Silver fleet and 47th overall while Donaghadee Sailing Club's Oisín Mcclelland was close behind in 49th out of 90 boats.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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Sailing’s oldest enemy played havoc in what was supposed to be the busiest day of the Hempel Sailing World Championships Aarhus 2018 so far on Monday.

After a week of ideal conditions, light and changeable winds made for difficult race management decisions at the today where Ireland had four crews competing in the 49er skiff event. Although three races had been scheduled, only one race was sailed to complete the minimum of six races required for the qualification round.

Following a late-evening decision, hoped-for additional racing using the reserve-day on Tuesday for the 49er fleet will not now take place meaning that Ryan Seaton of Ballyholme Yacht Club with Séafra Guilfoyle from the Royal Cork Yacht Club will not progress to the Gold fleet racing in spite of a strong performance in Monday's fickle winds.

After winning the start of the first race, the duo was second at the first mark and after a shifty final leg, ended the race in sixth place.  In the second race of the day, the pair was holding fourth place when the light breeze faded and the race was abandoned.

In the Yellow flight that succeeded in sailing two races, Mark Hassett from Baltimore Sailing Club with Oisin O'Driscoll from Schull Harbour Sailing Club had an eighth place in the second race, their best of the series so far.  However, that race has now been discounted because the two other 49er flights were unable to sail a matching seventh race.

Laser AarhusFinn Lynch will be aiming to qualify for Tokyo over the next four races at Aarhus. Photo: World Sailing

"Finn Lynch is the strongest prospect for qualifying the country for Tokyo 2020"

Tomorrow (Tuesday) sees battle commences in the Gold fleet events for the Men’s Laser and Women’s Laser Radial classes following a rest day on Monday.  Rio 2016 veteran Finn Lynch from the National Yacht Club is the best placed of all the 14 Irish athletes across all classes in Aarhus and is the strongest prospect for qualifying the country for Tokyo 2020.

Lynch has sailed a strong regatta since starting last Friday but with four races remaining over the next two days, his task will be to deliver consistency and repeat his earlier top ten results in what is certain to be a hugely competitive Gold fleet.

In the Women’s Laser Radial event, Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins will be aiming to maximise her first Sailing World Championship Gold fleet experience over the next two days after she successfully qualified on Sunday.

Silver fleet racing across several classes on Tuesday includes Aisling Keller from Lough Derg Yacht Club in the Laser Radial, Liam Glynn from Ballyholme Yacht Club in the Laser, Fionn Lyden from Baltimore Sailing Club and Oisin Mcclelland from Donaghadee Sailing Club who are both in the Finn event.

In the 49er world championship series that continues on Wednesday, Seaton and Guilfoyle will contest the Silver fleet along with Robert Dickson from Howth Yacht Club sailing with Sean Waddilove from Skerries Sailing Club.  Hassett and O'Driscoll will compete in the Bronze fleet along with Sean and Tadgh Donnelly from National Yacht Club.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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Two Dublin Laser sailors are into the gold fleet of their respective fleets at the World Championships at Aarhus, Denmark but Finn Lynch and Aoife Hopkins will both will need to up their game if Olympic nation qualification is to be achieved next week.

Gusting winds at the Hempel Sailing World Championships at Aarhus, Denmark today saw the sailors deliver qualification into their respective Gold fleets. The progress keeps alive the promise that Ireland can deliver at least two nation places at this championships.

After six races over the past three days in the 165-boat Men’s Laser event, Rio 2016 veteran Lynch, who is a full-time sailor, comfortably reached the Gold fleet after posting 18th and 13th places for the day.

Howth Yacht Club’s Hopkins, who is a Trinity College Maths Student, matched her opening day form which was also enough to qualify for the Gold fleet.

Over 1,500 athletes are competing in all 10 Olympic classes for the first opportunity to qualify their nations for Tokyo 2020. 

The top 14 by nation is proving elusive however for Lynch and the National Yacht Club single-hander will need a step-up in form when racing resumes on Tuesday and Wednesday following a well-earned rest day. 

World U21 Bronze medallist Liam Glynn from Ballyholme Yacht Club was unlucky to miss the cut for Gold fleet after posting his best day of the series with a 12th a 17th. He was just five places off the cut and will now start in the Silver fleet on Tuesday.

In the Womens’ Laser Radial event Hopkins matched her opening day form with a 33rd and 35th for the day which was enough to qualify for the Gold fleet. Lough Derg Yacht Club’s Aisling Keller was unlucky in the second race of the day when she was disqualified after starting early and she slips to the Silver fleet at 105th overall.

The Mens’ 49er skiff event will be the only Irish-interest qualification series continuing on Monday for the final three races of the round. London and Rio veteran Ryan Seaton from Ballyholme, now paired with Séafra Guilfoyle of the Royal Cork Yacht Club posted their best day today when they scored top results for the two races. Three races remain on Monday with an improvement from their current 41st overall to 29th or better needed to make the Gold fleet.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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After two days of racing, Laser sailor Finn Lynch from the National Yacht Club had a fourth place, his second top ten of the four races, and lies 24th overall and inside the cut for the Gold fleet at the World Sailing Championships Aarhus, Denmark.

Fresh conditions greeted the 14 Irish sailors competing at the championships today where a full programme of races was completed and classes start looking towards Gold, Silver and Bronze fleet splits. 

Silver Fleet for Irish Finns

After three tough days afloat, the single-handed Finn fleet completed its qualification series of six races where Baltimore Sailing Club's Fionn Lyden narrowly missed a place in Gold fleet by two spots when he placed 47th overall. Oisin Mcclelland from Donaghadee SC wasn't much further behind in 52nd overall. 

The Finn class takes a well-earned rest day on Sunday ahead of four more races on Monday and Tuesday with both Irish boats competing in the Silver fleet.

Lynch Counts Second Top Ten Result

Rio 2016 veteran Finn Lynch from the National Yacht Club had a fourth place, his second top ten of the four races sailed to date and lies 24th overall and currently inside the cut for the Gold fleet. Crucially for Ireland's prospects for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, he is close to the top 14 by nation count that will qualify for the next games at this world championships.

"Some tricky 5-15 knot shifty offshore winds today made for difficult conditions! I got caught out with a 50 degree left shift in Race 1 and finished up 46th. Managed to bounce back well in Race 2 with a 4th leaving me 234rd overall as it stands", Lynch told supporters on social media.

Liam Glynn from Ballyholme YC also enjoyed a top ten result with an eighth but followed this with a 42nd in the second race. With his discard already used for a 52nd place in the opening race on Friday he now lies 85th overall with two races tomorrow to decide the Gold/Silver/Bronze fleet split in the 165-boat fleet.

Aoife Hopkins Moves Up to 44th

In the women's Laser Radial event, Howth YC's Aoife Hopkins had a good day posting an 18th and a seventh places for the day, a step-up in form from Friday that moves her to 44th overall. Lough Derg's Aisling Keller didn't fare so well with a 53rd and 46th for the day. Like the Mens' event, two further races in the qualification round will be sailed tomorrow. 

Seaton & Guilfoyle Avoid Total Disappointment

Meanwhile, the full Irish line-up was afloat today as the 49er skiff series got underway for the four crews that had a three-race day. London and Rio veteran Ryan Seaton from Ballyholme YC, now paired with Seafra Guilfoyle from the Royal Cork YC averted total disappointment by scoring a seventh in the third race of the day but that leaves them third Irish boat and 49th overall.

Top Irish honours amongst the 49ers for the day goes to the Howth and Skerries pairing of Robert Dickson and Sean Waddilove who had an eighth and a 13th before being denied a top three when they capsized short of the finishing-line in the third race. The Dublin Northside duo are best of the Irish boats in 38th overall.

"The Dublin Northside duo are best of the Irish boats in 38th overall"

Baltimore's Mark Hassett and Schull's Oisin O'Driscoll also had a top ten result and lie 49th overall while Sean and Tadgh Donnelly from the National YC had two consistent 14th places after discarding a 'Did Not Finish' score after they suffered gear failure in the opening race.

Tidey Seventh in 49erFX

In the 49erFX womens skiff, Annalise Murphy has yet to enter the fray, as training continues on Dublin Bay with new crew Katie Tingle, so Irish interest lies with Irish Rio veteran Saskia Tidey who is in seventh place sailing with Charlotte Dobson for Team GB.

Racing continues on Sunday for Laser, Laser Radial and 49er events with a strong wind forecast.

Published in Tokyo 2020

Howth Yacht Club’s Aoife Hopkins carried the Irish flag in tonight’s opening ceremony for the 90 nations represented at the Sailing World Championships in Denmark.

Team Ireland has already been in action on Day One with two Finns competing in the Gold Cup staged as part of the event. Oisin McClelland leads Fionn Lyden after a single race sailed. More here.

Along with Aisling Keller from Lough Derg YC, Hopkins, the youngest team member, will begin competing on Friday in the single-handed Laser Radial class.

The Mens’ Laser event also begins tomorrow so Finn Lynch from the National YC and Liam Glynn from Ballyholme YC will start their world championship series.

A light air forecast for Friday is on the cards.

More on the Irish team competing here and podcast with Team Manager James O'Callaghan on World Championships prospects here.

Published in Tokyo 2020
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Fionn Lyden from Baltimore Sailing Club and Oisin McClelland from Donaghadee Sailing Club were amongst 90 competitors that spent up to eight hours afloat as the sea breeze fought to become established on day one of the Sailing World Championships in Aarhus, Denmark.

Racing eventually got underway at 4pm local time and saw McClelland place 16th while his West Cork counterpart did well to recover ground and finish 21st in their 45-boat flight. A total of 90 sailors are competing in the Finn class.

Finn 9Oisin McClelland (Finn number 9) on part tack looks for a lane in the approach to the weather mark Photo: Robert Deaves

Both McClelland and Lyden are aiming for the single place for Ireland on the Tokyo startline. A total of 19 nations can be represented in Japan and the 40 per cent of places to be allocated in Aarhus means either sailor must finish in the top eight nations.

The Finn Gold Cup got off to a slow start after only one race was possible as the gradient and thermal breezes fought all day long. When the sea breeze finally won late in the afternoon, Jorge Zarif and Josip Olujic took the race wins in their groups after a shifty race in 8-12 knots of wind.

The Finns were unusually split into groups, and even more unusually the groups were sailing separately, meaning that yellow group was scheduled to sail two races and then the blue group. However, on arrival at the course area, there was not enough wind to race. After an hour, race officer Peter Reggio moved the fleet to another area close to the Aarhus shoreline. For a while the wind come off the shore, but then switch to the sea breeze, and back again. One race was even started with an offshore wind but was abandoned after a few minutes as the breeze evaporated in the stiflingly
hot Danish air.

Finally at around 4pm, a sea breeze became established onshore and the racing got underway. Blue group had also been brought out and the fleets sailed one race, with a 10-minute gap between starts.

In Yellow group, while most of the fleet favoured the left, the leaders emerged from the right. After almost being cut in half by a media boat out of the start it was James Dagge from Hong Kong leading at the top from Dave Shilton, from South Africa and Can Adurak, from Turkey. Dagge, in his first full year in Finns, managed to hold onto his lead downwind and up the second beat. However, with Oscar raised at the top of the second upwind could he not hold off Zarif, from Brazil, and Guillaume Boisaard, from France.

In Blue group, Olujic also went right and led round the top and was never headed. He was followed round by Lukasz Lesinski, from Poland, and Joan Cardona Mendez, from Spain. While Lesinski slipped back Cardona held on for second and the defending world champion Max Salminen, recovered to cross third.

Olujic said, “The race was pretty tricky I was lucky that I could watch the group before us and saw that there were some shifts and some changes to what was my strategy before the start. So I decided to start at the committee boat and tried to keep the right side, which at the end was a good decision I was leading from the top mark and was more or less controlled downwind and on the second upwind and on the last downwind I extended so it was kind of easy when I was in front.”

“It’s really nice to win the first race of the Gold Cup especially as we all know it’s the major event after the Olympics so I am happy with that.”

Defending champion Salminen was pleased to get the first race out of the way without incident. “It’s nice to get going finally. Always a bit nervous before the first race, therefore, it's even more satisfying to get away with a solid keeper. I finished third in the race after waiting for a long time for the sea breeze, and in the end it was a decent race.”

However, the major story of the day was the outstanding performance of the sailors that were part of the Emerging Nations Program. Eight sailors had received assistance and training before the worlds. One of these was James Dagge who led most of his race, but also Dave Shilton and several others put down some markers today.

Dagge explained his day, “Excellent first race. It’s a shame we didn’t get two races but the race committee did a really good job to get that one in. We were waiting for five hours.”

“I managed a really good start and first work and was first round the top mark. That felt pretty good…until you see this wall of boats chasing you downwind. That’s a bit daunting.”

“I thought it was a bit optimistic that some of the guys thought the breeze would go left considering how late in the day it was. So we thought it was going to go back to the right, which it did, fortunately.”

“The training we have been doing with the ENP and with Mads (Bendix) has been really good. It has helped out a lot. We have trained in that race area quite a few times.”

“I always knew it was going to be extremely hard to keep those guys behind me; when you have a couple of the best guys in the world 20 metres behind you, you have a pretty serious job to keep them there, but when you are out in front you can play your own game and do what you want.”

“The boat was going really well. Unfortunately, they got me on the last run, towards the end when I gybed back to the gate mark too late, and finished third, but still pretty happy with that.”

“Tough first day and excited to see what tomorrow brings.”

Racing is scheduled to continue Friday at 12.00

Results after one race
1 BRA 109 Jorge Zarif 1
1 CRO 1 Josip Olujic 1
3 ESP 26 Joan Cardona Mendez 2
3 FRA 9 Guillaume Boisard 2
5 HKG 8 James Dagge 3
5 SWE 33 Max Salminen 3
7 GBR 96 Hector Simpson 4
7 TUR 35 Can Akdurak 4

9 GBR 91 Ben Cornish 5

9 RSA 1 David Shilton 5

Full results: https://aarhus2018.sailing.org/results

Published in Tokyo 2020
Tagged under
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