It was forecast to be Big Tuesday a couple of days ago – Doug Charko, the USA Team AlphaGraphics weather man told us on Sunday it would be 15-20 knots and gusting 25. Unfortunately for Doug, when the fleet was greeted with a flat calm this morning, he wound back his weather forecast a few notches. Then out of nowhere Doug redeeemed himself as 25 knot gusts came ripping in...With the RS:X men's fleet split into two groups, three sailors share the lead in the Men's RS:X fleet, Dorian Van Rijsselberge (NED), Nick Dempsey (GBR) and João Rodrigues (POR). Day one leader Nick Dempsey continued to sail well in the blue fleet but it was Dutch sailor Van Rijsselberge who blew everyone away in the breeze as he did last year at the worlds here in Weymouth.
Nimrod Mashiah (ISR), the RS:X Vice World Champion, continued to be a threat posting two 3rd place results on the day. When his day one 8th place is discarded on day 3, he will be there or there abouts as will Olympic gold medallist, Tom Ashley (NZL) who is 13th overall now but carries a 19th in a current score line that looks like this... 19-2-4-4
Over in the Yellow fleet JP Tobin (NZL) recovered from a mediocrefirst day (two 6th place finishes) to win both races. Joao Rodrigues [POR] is the top man in this fleet due to his consistent results but has yet to win a race. Germanys Toni Wilhelm showed he much prefers the winds of todays racing by posting a 2-3 scoring line and should be threat for the podium if the winds hold.
In the Women's RS:X fleet, defending Skandia Sail for Gold champion and current Sailing World Cup standings leader, Blanca Manchon (ESP, pictured above) has taken an early lead over Charline Picon (FRA) in second.
Race 1 on the day saw Manchon pick up where she left off last year, winning races, with Picon finishing just behind her. Laura Linares (ITA) rounded out the top 3 with Bryony Shaw 4th and
While Manchon continues to hold her lead she showed vulnerability in the bigger winds posting a 9th place finish in the second and final race on the day. The women are sailing in one large fleet. China's Li Ling showed she has the speed to win races and that’s just what she did in race 2 on the day with Finland's Tuuli Petaja taking second and Pauline Perrin (FRA) in third.
Again when throw outs come in to play the results will certainly be shaken up with Nikola Girke (CAN), currently in 10th (26-6-5-5 scoring line) likely to benefit with Bryony Shaw (GBR), currently in 4th (4-5-4-13 scoring line).
With winds likely to moderate tomorrow, the Olympic venue is living up to its billing. The sailors who won medals in 2008 in China will have to re-learn the game of how to be a threat in all conditions for Weymouth is not predictable. It could be blowing hard one day and two days later present marginal racing conditions. The winner here this year will certainly be in the hunt in two years time.
Results – Top Five
(results conditional on protests)
RS:X Men Results – (After four races)
1st Van Rijsselberge NED 10 points
2nd Dempsey GBR 10 points
3rd Rodrigues POR 10 points
4th Tobin NZL 14 points
5th Mashiah ISR 15 points
RS:X Women Results (After four races)
1st Manchon ESP 13 points
2nd Picon FRA 17 points
3rd Tartaglini ITA 18 points
4th Shaw GBR 26 points
5th Linares ITA 30 points