It was a long wait in the hot sunshine of Hyeres on Day 3
of the Semaine Olympique Francaise. The Forecast was
always for the wind to be light today but for a while
there was a faint hope that the sea breeze might come
in encouraged by the fast warming land.
It was not to be. The PROs made the call at about 1330hrs.Down came the familiar red and white AP postponment
flags and out went the RS:X men for their one and only race
of the day.
I caught up with Shahar Zubari (ISR) relaxing in the cool of his car to hear about the national qualifications for the Olympic Regatta. Hyeres 2011 is not a counting regatta but that did not stop Shahar punching home his advantage today with another bullet. Julien Bontemps (FRA) is still in touch after his second place today just 4 points back. Piotr Myszka (POL), The RS:X World Champion is in third equal battling it out with Tom Ashley (NZL) for third step on the podium just a point adrift.
The fleet will race in Gold and Silver tomorrow so this one race was crucial for those at the cutoff point - 45th place - last night there was a three way tie. Tonight, Ben Barger (USA) and Sebastian Wang Hansen (NOR) are safely into Gold. Sorry Luka Mratovic (CRO) and Liran Machlev (ISR), you were close but no cigar this time.
For Blanca Manchon (ESP) life could not be better this evening. Still 9 points in the lead after Charline Picon (FRA) failed to pile on the pressure by finishing 5th in the one race of the day.
Peina Chen (CHN) took the gun in the yellow fleet and Laura Linares (ITA) in the blue. Alessandra Sensini (ITA) and Ning Wang (CHN) who is currently 26th overall each took second places. The battle to come in the gold fleet will be to establish who takes the minor places on the podium with 9 or 10 RS:X women still in with a chance of a top 10 place and a place in the medal race.