Saturday, August 16, 2008

Sailing: Another Long Day on the Water

"Another long day on the water," reported James O'Callaghan from the sailing at Qingdao, where conditions are as difficult as everyone expected in an area not renowned for big winds.
After just one race of the scheduled three, a very strong current called a halt to Ciara Peelo' s Laser Radial class. The small sails meant that the boats were struggling badly unlike the Star and 470 boats with their larger sails.
Race 5 was the toughest yet for Peelo, with all the fleet struggling to main positions and fighting the current. " It was a snakes and ladders kind of race in which Ciara finished really well. From rounding the first windward mark in 10th, Ciara picked up another place on the run. She dropped back to 16th before climbing back to finish in 13th"
Although lying 14th overall at the half way stage of the competition, Peelo is just 12 points behind Argentina in 10th place and is still in the hunt for a place in the top ten Final Medal Race. The remaining five races are scheduled over the next two days.
Star sailors Stephen O'Leary & Stephen Milne had reasonable high scoring results to provide a solid start to their competition and put them ninth - ahead of multiple Olympic and World Champion Robert Scheidt (Brazil) in 11th place.
Gerald Owens & Phil Lawton finished 16th overall in the 470 double handed men's class which has completed its Opening Series of ten races, with the top ten going into the Final Medal Race. Owens has matched his Athens placing of 16th and can be pleased with his first two Olympic race wins.

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