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Olympics: Gold for Spain and The Netherlands in Windsurfing
Photo by Ingrid Abery, www.ingridabery.com. Click on image for photo gallery.

Windsurfing Dorian Van Rijsselberge (NED) won the Men's RS:X Medal Race and the gold medal to wrap up his total domination of the men's windsurfing fleet at the London 2012 Olympic Games.

The Dutch sailor entered the Medal Race with an unassailable 22-point lead after winning six of the 10 opening races and only needed to start the double-points race to take gold. In the final race of the opening series, 2011 world champion Van Rijsselberge (NED) did not finish and discarded the resulting 39 points knowing he had sufficient points to claim gold.

Athens 2004 bronze medallist and Weymouth resident Nick Dempsey (GBR) won the silver medal in front of his home crowd after finishing second in the Medal Race. After a lacklustre start to the series, Dempsey worked his way up into medal contention with two wins, but Van Rijsselberge (NED) placed the gold beyond his reach.

Przemyslaw Miarczynski (POL) finished the Medal Race in fourth to take the bronze medal sharing in the success of his teammate in the women's RS:X class Zofia Klepacka (POL), who also won bronze.

Top Three
1. Dorian Van Rijsselberge (NED) - 15pts
2. Nick Dempsey (GBR) - 41pts
3. Przemyslaw Miarczynski (POL) - 60pts

RS:X Women

Marina Alabau (ESP) made up for her disappointment at Beijing 2008, where she finished fourth, by winning a light wind medal race to claim gold. Tuuli Petaja (FIN) won silver and Zofia Klepacka (POL) took bronze.

Medal contender Olga Maslivets (UKR) boldly grabbed the advantage from the start of the Medal Race, choosing to set her board up to sail faster but further than the rest of the fleet and powered up the first leg to round the first mark in the lead, ahead of Bryony Shaw (GBR) who was also in pursuit of a bronze medal. Alabau rounded in third with Maslivets looking good for silver.

The pre-regatta favourite, Lee Korzits (ISR), went into the Medal Race in second but finished in ninth place, leaving her sixth overall.

Top three
1. Marina Alabau (ESP) - 26pts
2. Tuuli Petaja (FIN) - 46pts
3. Zofia Noceti Klepacka (POL) - 47pts

470 Men

Australia's Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page and Great Britain's Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell are guaranteed to walk away with either a gold or silver medal in the Men's 470.

Both teams have an unassailable lead at the top of the leader board but the Australian's have the advantage going into the Medal Race as they hold a four point lead over the Brits after double bullets on the final day of Men's 470 fleet racing. Belcher and Page have won five of ten races after a shaky start on the opening day.

The Men's 470 Medal Race takes place on 9 August at 13:00 local time on the Nothe Course.

Top Three
1. Mathew Belcher and Malcolm Page (AUS) - 18pts
2. Luke Patience and Stuart Bithell (GBR) - 22pts
3. Lucas Calabrese and Juan de la Fuente (ARG) - 57pts

470 Women

Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie (NZL) secured two bullets today in the Women's 470 to hold the overall lead on 21 points.

The wind may have been lighter than we have been used to seeing at the London 2012 Olympic Sailing competition so far, at just 10 knots, but that didn't stop the Kiwi team from keeping the pressure on and leading the fleet in both races. They almost made it look easy in the second race by sailing the last four marks 350m ahead of the rest of the fleet.

Top Three
1. Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie (NZL) - 21pts
2. Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark (GBR) - 25pts
3. Lisa Westerhof and Lobke Berkhout (NED) - 28pts

Races 9 & 10 will be sailed Wednesday, the Medal Race is Friday.

Women's Match Racing

The eight remaining teams in the Women's Match Racing, took to the water today for the Quarter Finals.

Olivia Price, Nina Curtis and Lucinda Whitty (AUS) may have been unbeaten in the previous round robin, but that counts for nothing as they reach this stage of the competition.

First up in the quarter finals it was Price who took on Renee Groeneveld (NED). Price (AUS) and her crew couldn't keep their unbeaten record as the Dutch sailor managed to beat her first up whilst Price took the second race.

Silja Lehtinen (FIN) took on Anna Tunnicliffe (USA) in the second pairing of the day. Tunnicliffe couldn't get ahead in either race though and 2012 World Champion Lehtinen takes a 2-0 lead into tomorrow.

Claire Leroy (FRA) and Tamara Echegoyen (ESP) battled it out in the third pairing and the Spaniard had a fantastic start by securing two wins against the French team. Leroy will have to put the pressure on in the 3rd race to secure a win to keep her medal chances alive.

Finally, Lucy Macgregor (GBR) and Ekaterina Skudina (RUS) ended the days races by finishing with 1 point each.

Racing resumes tomorrow no earlier than 14:00 on the Nothe Course.

www.sailing.org/olympics/london2012/home.php
www.london2012.com/sailing/

Why Sailing Is Not A Spectator Sport
Now this, plainly, is where they should have staged the beach volleyball. There's plenty of room, after all. On a perfect holiday lunchtime, the great sandy crescent of Weymouth Bay yesterday stretched under the sun. The top end, away from the big screens, lay almost completely deserted. Most of the guesthouses along the elegant Georgian esplanade forlornly advertised vacancies. And even as the nation toasted the most decorated sailor in Olympic history, the regatta that was supposed to fill every bed in the town itself slumbered, on the face of it, as arcane and remote as ever.

Even Britain's growing infatuation with the Games could not justify anyone actually paying for the privilege of squinting from a hill where they are proud only to take Visa.

For it is perfectly possible to get very nearly as good a view for nothing – from the old harbour wall; from a knoll beyond the ticketed area; from the narrow shoreline just beneath the Nothe Fort itself. And these places also, surprisingly enough, provide a genuine ringside seat.

And if it's good enough for Brad Funk, it should certainly be good enough for any layman driven nuts by a fruitless quest for Olympics tickets.

Funk narrowly missed out on representing the US here, but his wife, Anna Tunnicliffe, is fancied for gold with the women's match racing team. And here was this Funk dude from Florida, watching the fleet from a boulder, savouring the tang of salt and seaweed, as kids dredged rock pools and the cognoscenti peered into binoculars.

True, those beyond the steel fences round the ticketed area, just a few yards away, had a big screen and commentary to elucidate the intricacies of the regatta. But here on the waterline the race unfolded quite intelligibly within a few hundred yards. "This is great," Funk said. "You don't quite get a bird's-eye view on the shifts, like they do up the hill. But you're really in the action here. For spectators, this must be one of the best Olympics in history."

The sailors themselves have paid a heavy price for that. The winds beneath the Victorian fort are notoriously fitful, yet have to be harnessed precisely when the stakes are highest. "Mother Nature can throw you a curveball out there," Funk said. "There's no trends, no consistency. You can sail spot on all week, and then find a random element thrown into the medal races. It's unfortunate, but they're trying to give them a show." -- Chris McGrath in The Independent

Full article at: www.independent.co.uk/sport/olympics/sailing/

The Strong Survive in Day Two of Audi ORCi Worlds
Photo by Max Ranchi, www.maxranchi.com. Click on image for photo gallery.

Audi ORCi Worlds Helsinki, Finland: A deepening low pressure in central Finland brought brisk 20-30 knot southwest winds and 2m seas to the two course inshore course areas today, producing challenging conditions for the 124 teams entered in Day Two of the Audi ORCi World Championships. The big breeze brought carnage and injury to the unprepared and unlucky on both courses, leaving the strong to survive.

Nonetheless, the 77 entries in Classes B1 and B2 were able to get two more races on their scoreboards after their late night finish to yesterday's offshore race, and the winners in each class are starting to show the consistency needed to qualify for the Gold Fleet.

In Class B1 Mihkel Kosk's Estonian Leitvaagen team on his NM38 Sugar 2 won both races today, giving them an impressive 2-1-1 scoreline, but only 3 points ahead of the offshore race winner, Nico Brabers's Dutch Salona 37 Lenco. However, moving forward through the ranks from their 4th place in the offshore race was 2010 Class B World Champion Juergen Klinghardt and his German team on his X-332 Sport patent 3, on the strength of two 2nd place finishes earned today.

Also scoring double-bullets today in Class B2 was Patrik Forsgren and his Swedish team on their modified First 36.7 Team Arken Zoo. They lie three points ahead of another Swedish team, Martin Nilsson's Salona 37 Feelgood, last year's ORCi European Champion. And had it not been for a broken steering cable in Race 3, forcing owner/driver Vincenzo de Blasio to guide his Italian team through the wind and waves with an emergency tiller, his NM38 Scugnizza would no doubt be closer than their current six-point deficit in third place.

Except for the leader, the results in Class A have been shuffled from yesterday's offshore race due to damage and attrition among this group of 47 boats, who had only one race in the strongest winds at the end of the day. Italian Alberto Rossi and his reigning World Champion team on their modified Farr 40 Enfant Terrible scored another 2nd place to take a commanding lead in the class, while last year's Class A European Champion Silva Hispaniola, Peter Schmidt's German Evento 42, won today's race, but moved only up to better than fifth place in the standings, recovering from their mediocre finish in the offshore race. Lying in second on a 5-3 scoreline is Juss Ojala's Estonian GS 42R Amserv, and in third place now is Bernhard Buchenwald's German XP-44 Xenia.

Damage to boats today included a broken mainsail on yesterday's Class A offshore race winner Audi, Jani Lehti's Finnish team on their GS 42R, a broken backstay on Patrick Lindqvist's Swedish TP52 Blixt Pro Sailing, and a cracked backstay crane on the other TP52, Thomas Nilsson's Norwegian Wolfpack Trucknor, noticed after the team had come ashore. This along with numerous broken spinnakers will keep the boatbuilders and sailmakers busy all night making repairs for tomorrow's resumption of inshore racing in the morning.

One team unfortunately not returning to racing this week due to damage is Kirsten Harmstorf's DK46 Tutima, whose damage to their keel and bulb is too extensive to repair. The team is packing up and heading back home to Germany.

But tomorrow is a very important day for teams in Classes B1 and B2 who are on edge of making the cut for the Gold Fleet who will be racing for the Class B title for the remainder of the week.

www.orciworlds2012.com

Singapore and Greece Secure 420 World Championship Titles
Neusiedler See, Austria: After a postponement ashore, teams eventually got out to race around 1600 hours.

In the 420 Ladies, it was close going into the final race with the battle set for gold and silver between two teams, Chile's Nadja Horwitz/Sofia Middleton and Singapore's Rachel Lee/Cecilia Low. Carrying a one point deficit, Lee/Low had to finish ahead, and they did in style.

The battle for the bronze medal had a about seven teams in contention, but slipping through to the podium spot with a race win were Griselda Khng/Shu Xian Lee (SIN). Impressively, Singapore claimed the fourth place too with Kimberly Lim/Savannah Siew.

Alex and George Kavas of Greece win the 2012 420 World Championship title with an 11 point advantage over the second placed Guillaume Pirouelle/Valentin Sipan of France. Spain's David and Alex Charles finish third overall.

Top ten ladies

1. Rachel Lee / Cecilia Low, SIN, 28 points
2. Nadja Horwitz / Sofia Middleton, CHI, 29
3. Griselda Khng / Shu Xian Lee, SIN, 54
4. Kimberly Lim / Savannah Siew, SIN, 55
5. Ilaria Peternoster / Bernedetta Di Salle, ITA, 57
6. Jessica Lavery / Georgina Mothersele, GBR, 63
7. Carlotta Omari / Francesca Russo Cirillo, ITA, 69
8. Aura Miquel / Marina Cano, ESP, 70
9. Jennifer Poret / Louise Chevet, FRA, 74
10. Camille Rossi / Aurelie Vilette, FRA, 83

Top ten open

1. Alexandros Kavvas / Georgios Kavvas, GRE, 18
2. Guillaume Pirouelle / Valentin Sipan, FRA, 29
3. David Charles / Alex Charles, ESP, 36
4. Santi Mas / David Mas, ESP, 50
5. Josh Franklin / Alexander Gough, AUS, 67
6. Harry Derbyshire / Tom Lovesey, GBR, 69
7. Fratzeskos Mpakatsias / Evangelos Timogiannakis, GRE, 72
8. Craig Dibb / Charlie Cox, GBR, 73
9. Michail Zenetzidakis / Vasilis Kontakis, GRE, 82
10. Goncalo Pinho / Miguel Hipolito, POR, 83

events.sailracer.org

GB Youth Sailors Get Set To Take On Europe's Best
RYA Volvo National Youth Squad sailors will look to build on the success of winning the ISAF Youth Worlds' Nations Trophy a fortnight ago as they begin their battle to take on Europe's finest sailors at the EUROSAF Youth Sailing European Championship in Aarhus, Denmark today (Monday 06 Aug).

Amidst all the excitement of the London 2012 Olympics and Team GB sailors winning one gold and one silver medal in Weymouth and Portland yesterday, 20 youth sailors will represent RYA Volvo Team GBR at the Aarhus Yachting Harbour across five days of fierce competition. Last year's event was the first of its kind and took place at the Yacht Club Acquafresca, Lake Garda.

The sailors representing RYA Volvo Team GBR have a wealth of experience and expertise on their side after competing at the recent Four Star Pizza ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships and numerous international regattas.

Leading the charge for the British squad is the 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist, Saskia Sills, who will be looking to dominate the RS:X female fleet like she did in Dublin Bay a fortnight ago. Kieran Martin, Michael Beckett and Ellie Meopham add to the list of ISAF Youth Worlds representatives, while 29er sailors Vikki Payne/Stephanie Orton recently won medals at their class Youth World and European Championships.

Nearly 150 sailors, across seven Youth classes will compete for what is the first multi-discipline Continental Championship to be held for European sailors, an event that is to become an annual championship for these young sailors. Some 18 European countries are sending their youth sailors to contest for the prestige of being crowned European youth champion.

Sailors will be competing in the boys and girls' Laser Radial, 420, RS:X sailboard and the open 29er skiff. The single and double-handed classes will each sail nine races and the sailboard and high performance dinghy twelve races.

As well as battling for the European titles, sailors will be competing to win the series of new trophies generously donated by some EUROSAF member countries. Amongst these is the prestigious Nations' Cup - Team Trophy, which will be awarded to the top competing nation, donated by the Royal Yachting Association (RYA).

Racing began Monday. The last day of the championship (Friday 10th August) will see an experiment with medal races being held for the first time in a youth championships of this kind.

Event site: www.sailing-aarhus.dk/eurosafyouthsailing/

Spinnaker Tales
Veteran Sunshine Coast Ocean racing skipper Bob Robertson has some unfinished business listed in his personal log book.

Since launching his latest yacht Lunchtime Legend a production Beneteau First 40 just over 12 months ago he has flown his personal 'battle flag' in the Rolex Sydney to Hobart race finishing 12th overall and third in Division 4.

Personal determination continues to drive him on and he intends to again represent Queensland in the 2012 Rolex Sydney Hobart next Boxing Day.

Meanwhile he will focus his tactical attention on scoring a respectable result in the 2012 Telcoinabox Airlie Beach Race Week to be contested on the warmer and more hospitable waters in the Whitsunday Islands from August 10-16

He is no stranger to these waters and will have long term sailing mate Tony Kirby as his specialist tactician when Lunchtime Legend goes into battle against the 2007 Rolex Sydney Hobart champion Geoffrey Ross skippering the chartered Spanish TP52 Yendys.

Yendys previously known as Bribon and raced by King Juan Carlos of Spain was recently shipped to Australia for Geoffrey Ross to contest the major Australian winter regattas in the Whitsunday Islands.

As expected the high performance sloop racing for the first time under the Yendys 'Battle flag' is the favourite to win the Grand Prix IRC class championship over the tactically demanding Whitsunday Sailing Club courses.

This regatta will serve as an important evaluation trial for the Yendys crew who will also contest the 2012 Audi Australian IRC class championship during the Hamilton Island Race Week series from August 18-25.

While Bob Robertson respects the achievements of his rival Sydney skipper Geoff Ross he continues to believe Lunchtime Legend can produce the consistent handicap rated boat speed to be ranked as a title threat.

Should the advantage from previous experience in mastering these tricky waters become a deciding factor then Bob Robertson's crew of experienced sailors could put up strong challenge to win their first Grand Prix class championship of Airlie Beach.

However while Bob Robertson remains confident his pre-regatta expectations will be tested by the exceptionally talented Yendys crew who like skipper Robertson and his Lunchtime Legend crew have a reputation to protect when the title 'dog-fight' begins on Friday.

"I'm sure that we are up to the challenge but there will be no leeway for errors". Bob Robertson said.

Both Yendys and Lunchtime Legend predictably share the pre-regatta favouritism while the smaller challengers including the defending champion The Philosophers Club from Sydney's Middle Harbour Yacht Club and Mooloolaba Yacht Clubs Gary McCarthy skippered Brilliant Pearl have the proven form and the low handicap rating to be a threat.

But while all four skippers and crews remain individually confident they are not prepared to nominate who will claim the title as the 2012 Telcoinabox Airlie Beach Race Week IRC Class champion until the final race is decided on Pioneer Bay on Thursday August 16. -- Ian Grant

F18 Worlds Will Find Happy Home In Long Beach
The GLOBALTECH Formula 18 World Championship to be hosted by Alamitos Bay Yacht Club Sept. 7-15.

At this report, there were 113 entries from 11 countries and five continents for the class's first world championship in the USA. The headliners include defending champion Darren Bundock of Australia, past Olympic silver medalists Pease and Jay Glaser of the host club and Philippe Kahn, the accomplished and versatile competitor from Santa Cruz, Calif. who created the camera phone.

Bundock also has Olympic silver from 2000 and 2008 but was shut out of this year's Games when organizers dropped the Tornado class and went strictly monohull.

No problem for Darren. He has just advanced to sailing much larger multihulls for Larry Ellison and Russell Coutts' defending America's Cup team, Oracle, as a coach and helmsman.

Long Beach, with its (mostly) reliable southwesterly sea breeze sweeping down the San Pedro Channel, is a special attraction for multihulls. Multis sailed their third Olympics here with the Tornado in 1984. Jay Glaser won his silver as crew for Randy Smyth, and four-time gold medalist icon Paul Elvstrom of Denmark, then semi-retired, sailed with his daughter Trine.

Registration, boat measurement and inspection start Sept. 7. There will be practice racing on Monday, Sept. 10, followed by daily racing Tuesday through Saturday, with a maximum of 15 races scheduled.

The racing will be tracked on the Kattack website by courtesy of the title sponsor. -- Rich Roberts

Event site: www.abyc.org/event.cfm?id=378

Almost, Almost Ready To Launch
As summer heats up and people take to the water in boats of all shapes and sizes, the SpeedDream team are hard at work pulling together the final pieces of the SpeedDream27 prototype. As was expected the last pieces of the puzzle always takes the longest and it's made worse by the fact that we are all chafing at the bit to go sailing ourselves. We are, however, just weeks away from splashing the boat and going for a ride.

One of the toughest challenges has been designing and engineering the Flying Keel. It's a complicated bit of kit that is central to the whole SpeedDream concept. The carbon blade is 10-feet long (more than a third the overall length of the boat). The torpedo-shaped bulb hangs on one end and the other end is fitted into an intricately engineered and milled piece of metal that is connected to the actuator arm. With the step in the hull the design team were able to cant the entire keel over more than 80 degrees. Heel the boat 15 degrees and the whole lot comes out of the water and flies alongside the boat.

The hull and deck have a futuristic look that many have compared to a Stealth Bomber. It was designed that way not for looks but for function and speed, but the angles and intricacies of the design gave the builders at Lyman Morse some sleepless nights.

The project has not been without its setbacks. The new mast so beautifully made by Axxon in Romania arrived badly damaged. The damage has been repaired and a new mast is on order as a repaired carbon tube is adequate, but not ideal.

While this first stage of SpeedDream is coming to an end, the future looks incredibly bright. We have a full-on summer planned that will be more than we ever dreamed it could be. We will have an exciting announcement about that and about the future of SpeedDream in a few weeks. Meanwhile wish us luck as SpeedDream hits the water and we finally get to go sailing. -- Brian Hancock

www.mxspeeddream.com

Letters To The Editor -
Letters are limited to 350 words. No personal attacks are permitted. We do require your name but your email address will not be published without your permission.

* From Alistair Skinner: I know we Brits are disappointed - actually gutted is more accurate - for Ian and Bart. But a world champion took gold, a world champion took silver and a world champion took bronze, tricky conditions or not, they do say reading the wind and water is the most important part of sailing - so what's the problem with challenging conditions?

I have said this many times before but really guys - no media or other exposure = no sponsors = no regatta. Sport at the highest level cannot survive without money so we have to remember that old adage "he who pays the piper, pays the tune"

* From Gerald New: I am sure Mr Thompson knows the answer to his question - Is the competition for the sailors or the spectators?

ISAF has one overriding aim. To stay in the Olympics whatever it takes.

If that means racing racing on mini courses surrounded by wind obstructions - So be it.

If it means dumping recognised classes to introduce the latest media requirement - So be it.

If it means racing with the majority of the top sailors already eliminated - So be it.

I take nothing away from the Finn and Star sailors who stood on the podium this week. But as both World and Olympic champions how do they rank the Olympic title won from a restricted field of 16, with their World titles won from an open entry of 50 to 100 of their peers?

Featured Brokerage
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Complete listing details and seller contact information at uk.yachtworld.com

The Last Word
A lie told often enough becomes the truth. -- Lenin

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