#annalise_murphy – One point off the overall lead in the Laser radial class Annalise Murphy, Ireland's best hope for a sailing medal, continued her campaign unabated yesterday when she sailed again at the top of the fleet in her first race of the day. The performance of the Irish Olympic debutante to lead the regatta after four days of racing against Olympic and world champions is nothing short of remarkable.
Today's final two fleet races are crucial with so many consistent peformers at the top of the fleet. The top three sailors overall are on 23, 24 and 26 points respectively. Annalise will be mindful of any result scored outside the top 20 that could put her out of medal contention.
She maintained pole position until the third mark when Lijia Xu (CHN) edged in front of her.
The pair continued to battle it out for the top spot for the rest of the race, never allowing the other competitors to challenge them. Ultimately it was Xu (CHN) who crossed the line in first place but she was followed by Murphy in a close second. It was a major result because Murphy's main rivals Bouwmeester (NED), Young (GBR) and Van Acker (BEL) finished 4th, 6th and 8th respectively meaning Murphy extended her lead to eight points.
In Race 8 yesterday afternoon Murphy finished in 10th place to lose pole position for the first time in the competition. She's now second overall but only one point behind Van Acker (BEL) on 24 points and with the final two fleet races today.