PENULTIMATE DAY AT 420 EUROPEANS CLOSES POINTS GAP FOR PODIUM ASPIRING TEAMS
The penultimate day of racing at the 420 Open European Chanmpionships in Athens, Greece, was a tussle for leaderboard points.
The breeze filled in with a southerly at 14-16 knots and again challenged teams with differences in pressure and wind shifts around the track.
Saturday’s two races were all about consolidating and defending places, and for those still with a chance of climbing up it was a day to take a risk and push forwards.
Sunday's medal deciding races are scheduled to get underway at 1300 hours.
Having dominated all week, the USA’s Emma Kaneti/Ciara Rodriguez-Horan fell on their sword today, over the line in race 9 and, perhaps unseated by that outcome, then scored a 24th and plummeted from 1st to 4th. Overnight the pair will hopefully assess their day, get back into focus of what they know, have proven they can deliver so far and will come away from the Championship with a deserved podium finish.
With the Americans unseated, Spain’s Maria Caba/Pilar Caba swiftly took over the yellow leader bibs scoring a 10,1. Whether the Spanish team will still be wearing them by the prize giving is anyone’s guess, as the points margin behind is nerve rackingly close.
The 2015 420 Ladies World Champion, Marta Garrido (ESP), competing with crew Clara Llabres, is just one point behind her teammates and holds a better discard score. So any mistake by her rivals ahead and you can bet, despite her fun-loving demeanour, the vastly experienced Garrido will be ready to pounce.
Speaking on her take of the Championship so far, Garrido laughed, “I don’t know,” before giving a perfect perspective on sailing by saying, “I just want to have fun and enjoy this sport!”
Garrido acknowledges the conditions here at the Europeans have been tough, and that from the mouth of a sailor with over five years’ experience at 420 Class events and Championships, and a couple of years in the 470 Class.
“I think these races here at the Europeans are the most difficult I have been involved in for many years, because the wind is left, then right, then 15 knots, then 8 knots. It is impossible to know what it is going to be.”
Considering how she will approach Sunday’s podium deciding races, Marta concluded, “I think I have much experience in this class so I am not feeling nervous, and am just going to have fun.”
The opening race win of the day went to Great Britain’s Hatty Morsley/Pippa Cropley, their second of the series, but a rollercoaster scorecard holds them in 11th. Two more consistent results tomorrow though should see the pair secure a top-ten finish.
Similar front of finish fleets, compared to an otherwise up and down series, went to Israel’s Linoy Korn/Omer Bilia, who finished second behind the British, and Italy’s Laura Selvaggio/Camilla Fassio in third.
420 Ladies Provisional Results – Top 5 after 10 Races
1. Maria CABA/Pilar CABA (ESP 56245) - 62 pts
2. Marta GARRIDO/Clara LLABRÉS (ESP 56260) - 63 pts
3. Violette DORANGE/Camille ORION (FRA 56277) - 70 pts
4. Emma KANETI/Ciara RODRIGUEZ-HORAN (USA 54066) - 76 pts
5. Aina COLOM/Victoria SISK (ESP 55987) - 91 pts
Down but not for long! Yesterday, Italy’s Edoardo Ferraro/Francesco Orlando lost their lead, today they return with a vengeance. Behind are the same four teams, but just in a different order.
The fight is finely balanced, and the Italians look set to be in a duel to the end in a spectacular showdown with the reigning U17 World Champions, Telis Athanasopoulos Yogo/Dimitris Tassios (GRE). They are both very comfortable with the challenge and pressure for medal outcomes, but if they get too wrapped up in their own battle, the opportunity will soon open for one of the chasing teams to breakaway out front.
And, amongst those hunting down the Italian and Greek teams are Spanish brothers Lucas Pares/Teo Pares who are extremely close behind in third.
“It was very shifty and gusty, and it was like a difficult place to sail but we managed to do it well I think,” said Teo modestly on their 11,4 scores today. “We feel more comfortable in the upwind than the downwind, but we feel very fast.”
“I am happy with my results so far. I am at least aiming to keep this position, and if possible hope to improve.”
Last year the brothers competed in the U17 fleets at the 420 Worlds finishing 8th, and third at the 420 Junior Europeans. Comparing the two fleets, Lucas commented, “It is very different, as in U17 if you go fast you will be in the top then. But here the level is very high and you need to know where to go too, because if you only go fast, everyone else is also going fast!”
Israel’s Tal Shariti Sade/Noam Homri also put themselves closer to podium contention, upgrading from 5th to 4th overall. The pair are in their first year sailing a 420 and competing in their first event outside of Israel.
“Today was really challenging we made one bad race and one good race,” said Shariti Sade referring to their 28, 2 scores. “We are hoping to do good for tomorrow. We want to make a good start, just go fast and make a medal.”
420 Open Provisional Results – Top 5 after 10 Races
1. Edoardo FERRARO/Francesco ORLANDO (ITA 56278) - 56 pts
2. Telis ATHANASOPOULOS YOGO/Dimitris TASSIOS (GRE 56371) - 59 pts
3. Lucas PARES/Teo PARES (ESP 55233) - 66 pts
4. Tal SHARITI SADE/Noam HOMRI (ISR 54121) - 75 pts
5. Alex SMALLWOOD/Ross THOMPSON (GBR 55015) - 84 pts
Demetrio Sposato/Gabriele Centrone (ITA) have led the under-17 fleet since day one and clearly have no intention of letting go. Their advantage is 28 points, their worst score is 9th, apart from their discarded 20th place finish in race 8, and the stage is set for them to claim gold tomorrow.
There is no reason to doubt the ongoing performance of the Italians, but instead to watch what unfolds behind. Same four teams just a change in positions.
The Spanish pair of Martín Wizner/Pedro Ameneiro today overtook America’s Max Anker/Leyton Borcherding, with Rhys Lewis/Drew Wright dropping to 4th on tiebreak, and the top ladies team of Ariadni-Papaskevi Spanaki/Myrto Papadopoulou holding firm in 5th just a couple of points behind.
Sunday’s concluding two races are going to be particularly interesting in a battle to the end. The margin between these top 5 teams and 6th place is 34 points, so a realistic prediction that the medallists sit amongst these faces.
420 U17 Provisional Results – Top 5 after 10 Races
1. Demetrio SPOSATO/Gabriele CENTRONE (ITA 56124) - 40 pts
2. Martín WIZNER/Pedro AMENEIRO (ESP 56016) - 68 pts
3. Max ANKER/Leyton BORCHERDING (USA 56128) - 71 pts
4. Rhys LEWIS/Drew WRIGHT (GBR 56342) - 71 pts
5. Ariadni-Papaskevi SPANAKI/Myrto PAPADOPOULOU (GRE 54484) - 73 pts
ABOUT THE 2017 420 OPEN EUROPEAN CHAMPIONSHIPS
The 2017 420 Open European Championships is the first of four 420 Championships taking place in 2017, and will be followed by the 2017 420 Junior European Championships at Fraglia Vela Riva, Italy from 6-13 August 2017, the 2017 420 Team Racing World Championships also on Lake Garda from 23-26 August, and the year wraps up in Australia for the 2017 420 World Championships hosted at Fremantle Sailing Club from 26 December 2017-3 January 2018.
In the 420 Open, fleets will be seeded for the six race Qualification Series into yellow and blue fleets, before being split into gold and silver for the six race Final Series. The Ladies and U17 fleets will sail a single series of 12 races. Races will take place over two race courses.
The schedule is:
22-24 July 2017 - Measurement/Registration
24 July 2017 – Practice Race, Opening Ceremony
25-27 July 2017 - Qualification Series (Open) and Single Series (Ladies and U17) - 6 races
28-30 July 2017 - Final Series (Open) and Single Series (Ladies and U17) - 6 races, Closing Ceremony/Prize Giving
The 2017 420 Open European Championships is organized by the Nautical Club of Tzitzifies Kallithea in the iconic Olympic sailing city of Athens, Greece, in co-operation with the International 420 Class Association, Hellenic Sailing Federation and Greek 420 Class Association.
All six continents are represented amongst the 22 nations competing at the 2017 420 Open European Championships: Australia, Canada, Croatia, Czech Republic, France, Great Britain, Germany, Greece, Indonesia, India, Israel, Italy, Japan, Malaysia, Portugal, South Africa, Spain, Switzerland, Thailand, Turkey, Uruguay, USA.
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