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Olympic Trial Winners
This weekend saw 8 sailors gain a place on the year 2000 United States Olympic sailing team. 3 two person teams, plus 2 individuals in boardsailing will be representing the USA in Sydney under a year from now.
Both Mistral sailboard winners put on tremendous trails performances. Women's winner Lenee Butler was 1st in all but one race. Her 12 point total was well ahead of Cara Reid with 32 points. The men's winner Mike Gebhardt also won in dominant fashion. He finished first in 11 of 14 races and his 13 points were way ahead of the 28 accumulated by Randy Somnitz in 2nd.
The men's 470 team of Paul Foerester and Bob Merick also ended their trials with a healthy margin. They won 8 of the 15 races and ended with 19 points. 14 points back in 2nd were Morgan Reeser and Kevin Burnham.
Two fleets had closer finishes. The 49er skiff fleet saw the brother team of Jonathan and Charlie Mckee win 9 races and end up with 29 points. Only 5 points back were Morgan Larson and Kevin Hall with 8 1sts, and 34 points.
The closest of all the trials was the women's 470 fleet. Here J.J. Isler and Pease Glaser won 8 of 15 races to score a total of 21 points. 2nd place Courtenay Day and Alice Menard had 4 bullets and 25 points, only a 4 point deficit.
These 8 sailors will now have almost a year to get fully honed for a chance at an Olympic medal.
Although there will be no racing until Wednesday New Zealand time, controversy an America's Cup tradition is alive and well. While Fast 2000 and America One make repairs to their machines, the international jury and various syndicates are all on in the jury room.
Some of the controversy stems from 1/2 point penalties handed out to Team Dennis Conner and Nippon. The Team Dennis Conner penalty comes at the behest of the International Jury. In a pre start collision Stars and Stripes caused damage to America One. Although America One did not protest this fact, the jury made a clear statement that Stars and Stripes did not do the maximum to prevent a collision and so was penalized. Stars and Stripes Bill Trenkle said of the decision: ""We felt a little blindsided."
Nippon was penalized for hitting the Spanish boat. The Spanish had to replace the stern scoop after this incident.
Chief of the International Jury Bryan Willies drew this lesson: ""The lesson for [the teams] to learn is that if they're going to have massive collisions, and put boats out of commission, we'll take action."
A request by America true and Le Defi France to reopen the postponement of racing was declined. Both America True and France plan boat modifications and the delay before ending Round Robin 1 cuts into the time they have to work with.
With all issues now clear two more flights remain in round one. Updated standings are below.
Complete Round Robin 1 Standings