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17 September 2000 Issue # 252
Today's Sailing News
Olympic Sailing Day 1
Day 1 of the Olympic sailing regatta began with postponement due to lite winds. Due to start at 1200 the first racing did not begin until an hour and 15 minutes later when the Mistral Men's Sailboard fleet started. The Soling fleet did not start until 1520, while the Tornado catamarans started at 1522.
Even when the racing started it was light air with big shifts that scattered the fleet. The Tornado's got the most consistent breeze, while the Solings had breeze for only 1 of 2 scheduled races.
Mistral Sailboards: Men's Fleet
The lite air proved challenging and disconcerting for the Men's Mistral sailors. 2 of the 3 pre race favorites were scored OCS. Australian Lars Kleppisch was OCS in race 2 and sits 20th. New Zealand's Aaron Mcintosh was OCS in the first race and is 25th. 1996 Gold Medallist Nikolaos Kaklamanakis of Greece had an undistinguished day with scores of 20 and 12 and is 15th.
The leader after Day 1 is Christopher Sieber of Austria with scores of 1st and 2nd. Sieber was ranked 7th entering the games. 2nd is Argentinean Carlos Espinola who 3rd in race 2. 3rd is Ted Huang of Chinese Taipei.
American Mike Gebhardt had a strong 1st race ending it 2nd. The days 2nd race was not as kind and he finished 22nd. This puts him in 8th place.
After one day the men's boards standings are not as expected. Tote that up to lite air, and remember they all should be able to discard 2 scores.
Mistral Sailboards: Women's Fleet
The Women's boardsailing fleet's results were a bit more on the expected side.
The 6 podium spots of the day were filled by the same 3 sailors in each race.
Ranked 6th in the world Germany's Amelie Lux won the first race. 2nd was New Zealand's Barbara Kendall and 3rd was Italy's Alessandra Sensinni. 4th was the USA's Lanee Butler.
Race 2 saw the podium order changed to Italy, Germany, New Zealand. In this race the USA's Lanee Butler lost a port/starboard protest and was DSQ'd. The other party in this protest was Hong Kong's Lai Shan Lee defending Gold Medallist. Lee's day 1 scores were 5 and 10. This dropped her to 16th in the standings.
After 1 day of racing of note is the home teams lack of results in the Mistral fleets. As with the USA in 1996, perhaps home course advantage is overrated.
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Unofficial Team Standings
The following nations have sailors entered in all 11 classes: Australia, Germany, Italy, New Zealand, Spain and the USA. Sailing Daily will track the performance of these teams.
Day 1 Standings
The following sailors were flag bearers fro their country during the Opening Ceremony: Jesper Bank (DEN) Soling , Tony Philp (FIJ) Mistral Men's Sailboard, Cor van AANHOLT (AHO) Laser, Turia VOGEL (COK) Mistral Women's & Carlos ESPINOLA (ARG) Mistral Men's.
Today's Sailing News
Olympic Sailing: Day 1
After experiencing postponments and light air on day 1, the sailors could have more lite stuff. The forecast shows a frong in the area and winds going from N/NE to SW indicating passage of that front. After that the forecast states light and variable until east to north east sea breezes of 5 to 15 knots in the afternoon. Sailors may again wait for the sea breeze to fill before starting.
Soling Fleet Racing
The 16 boat Soling fleet was most hampered by the fluky winds. They sailed only 1 race instead of 2. In this fleet racing portion the minimum goal is to finish in the top 12 and live to fight another day in the match racing action.
Winner in the light air was the Netherlands trio skipperd by Roy Heiner. 2nd was the Russian team and 3rd was New Zealand with veteran Rod Davis driving. The USA's team was 4th.
It was a tough day for two of the favored boats. Great Britain was 13th and Germany with multiple gold medallist Jochen Schuemann was 14th. Both teams should discard these sub par numbers. With only 6 races in the Soling qualifying series there is less margin for error than in other fleets.
The Tornado fleet sailed 2 races on Course D. This is out near the Sydney Harbour entrance and conditions were dicey.
After 2 tough races 4 boats scored the best of the results. Austria's # 2 ranked team and the home country team ended with 4 points. Australia won race 1 and was 3rd in race 2. Austria started with a 3rd and finished up with a win.
Following them is another pair of teams with identical placings. Great Britain was 2nd and then 5th, with New Zealand reversing and scoring 5th then 2nd.
The US Team of John Lovell and Charlie Ogletree (7th) are one place behind the current World Champion team from Germany.
Most surprising is the results of the New Zealand cat helmed by Chris Dickson. Apparently some intense training in Sydney have got the intense Dickson up to speed and into medal contention.