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Sydney the site of the upcoming Olympic games is the site for the Sydney International Regatta. A significant amount of Olympic classes and Olympic caliber sailors are sailing. Racing will be completed the 15th.
In the Mistral Classes, home country sailor Lars Kleppich leads the men's fleet. Winner of the US Olympic trials Mike Gebhardt is 13th. In the Women's fleet US trial winner Lanee Butler is 10th.
The singlehanded Finn class is led by Great Britain's Ian Percy. The USA's Russ Silvestri on leave from the America One America's Cup team is 17th.
Amongst the women sailing the Europe singlehanded dingy a Finnish sailor leads. Torresen Sailing Site Sailor of the year candidate Margaret Matthysse is 8th. Best among the USA's representatives is Meg Gallard in 17th.
The Laser fleet is led by Robert Scheidt of Brazil. Laser Coach 2000 an interactive training CD Rom sold by Torresen Sailing Site features full motion video of Scheidt in action. Leading the USA's sailors is John Mydal in 17th, with Mark Mendenblatt in 19th and Bill Hardesty in 21st.
The 49er fleet sees the team that will represent the USA in Sydney, Charlie and Jonathan Mckee in 4th. Also competing is Torresen Sailing Site Sailor of the year candidate Chris Nicholson.
The Tornado catamaran class is led by the home standing Australian team. In 8th is the US team of Daniel and Bernier.
The Soling fleet has completed fleet racing. In the match racing Torresen Sailing Site Sailor of the year candidate Roy Heiner is undefeated at 6-0.
The US Sailing team has already held selection trials for the both the 470 Men's and Women's team. The 470 Men's team of Paul Foerster and Bob Merrick is 12th. On a better note the women's team of J.J. Isler and Pease Glaser is 4th, only 3 points from podium position.
Several of the teams already qualified to represent the USA are new top 3 positions. This must be considered a positibe as the USA builds towards the 2000 games.
Key West Race Week
In about one month sailors from the world over will be congregating in Key West Florida. The boats and sailors will be there for Key West Race Week. Racing will be from 17 to 21 January.
240 boats are expected. Entries for the event close this Friday. 13 countries are represented on the entry list.
Once again offshore one designs will have a large contingent at Key West. The Farr 40 expects 28 boats, including world champion Samba Pa ti. The Mumm 30 fleet could number up to 30. The One Design 35 fleet is expected to have 26 boats. This will be the first major regatta for the 1D 35's since the closely contested national championship.
The IMS class will have a solid mixture. Included will be: last years boat of the week Highland Fling, a new Farr 52 and Idler which sailed in the Admirals Cup.
The PHRF fleet will also have some interesting boats. Buddy Melges will sail a Melges 32 which is a modification and development of the Melges 30. Two of the Shock 40 Cinco's with their canting keels will make the week. Finally, a pair of Santa Cruz 70's in the form of Bill Alcott's Equation and George Collin's Chessie Racing will push each other around the buoys.
Torresen Sailing Site will provide coverage of the action next month.