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Annalise Leads But Van Acker Closes the Gauge

1st August 2012
Annalise Leads But Van Acker Closes the Gauge

#annalisemurphy – Annalise Murphy remains at the top of the Laser Radial fleet at the Olympic Games tonight but her unbeaten run came to an abrupt halt when strong winds forecast for Weymouth bay failed to materialise.

Instead the 22-year old debutante faced with a new course, new wind direction and placed 8th and 19th today.

With five fleet races left to sail Annalise is on 12 points, Evi Van Acker BEL is next on 14 points and Marit Boumeester NED on 19 and Alyson Young GBR on 23.

Racing was tricky today for most fleets with postponements and recalls. Race 5 for the Laser Radials had to be abandoned and rescheduled for 20 minutes later. Annalise Murphy got off to a good start towards the top of the fleet and rounded the first mark in 8th place. Her position fluctuated slightly throughout the race but ultimately she finished in 8th place while Van Acker (BEL) took first and Young (GBR) took second.

"It was light in areas and strong in other areas on the [race] course and I tried to stay as much as I can in the stronger wind" she told RTE news last night.

Race 6 saw Murphy get off to a great start at the top of the pack but she chose, along with many others, to take the left side of the course. Her rivals veered to the right which, within moments, was clear to be the correct choice and very quickly gained a 50 meter lead. Murphy then had the difficult task of making her way back across the fleet. It cost her 150 meters and left her in 22nd rounding the first mark. She fought hard throughout the rest of the race but just couldn't make up the distance and finished in 19th.

The discard came in to play today for the Radials after the fifth race. This means that Murphy can discard her 19th which still leaves her 1st overall on 12 points. In 2nd place is Evi Van Acker (BEL) on 14 points with Marit Bouwmeester (NED) in 3rd on 19 points. Tomorrow will be a rest day for the fleet. They will sail a further four fleet races on Friday and Saturday with the medal race taking place on Monday, 6th August.

Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern had a similarly challenging day in the 49er class. They rounded the first mark of Race 5 in 15th place but thanks to some tactical sailing they overtook three of their competitors to finish the race in 12th. Unfortunately Race 6 proved to be their most difficult to date and they finished towards the back of the fleet in 19th. The 49er discard also came in to play today so the pair discount the 19th and now sit 9th overall on the leader board on 41 points. The leaders Outteridge & Jensen (AUS) are on 10 points followed by Burling & Tuke (NZL) on 23 points and Dyen & Christidis (FRA) on 30 points. The 49er class will continue to race tomorrow and still have a further nine races to sail before the medal race.

James Espey also had his third day of racing today in the Laser class. The Laser fleet also had to contend with undoubtedly frustrating postponements and recalls. Espey finished 47th in Race 5 and an improved 42nd in race 6. With his discard he lies 45th overall. The Laser class will also have a rest day tomorrow with racing resuming on Friday.

Today was the rest day for Peter O'Leary and David Burrows and the Star class. The Irish pair remain in 9th overall and resume racing tomorrow.

Racing will continue tomorrow for the Star and 49er. Ger Owens and Scott Flanigan will also make their debut in the 470 class. The Laser Radial and Laser are on a rest day. Sailing action starts at 12 noon in Weymouth.

Published in Olympics 2012
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