U19 AND U17 FLEETS SET FOR MEDAL DECIDING BATTLE AT 420 JUNIOR EUROPEANS
The penultimate day of racing on Monday 29 July at the 2019 420 Junior European Championship in Spain was crunch time for those wanting to position themselves in podium contention.
Today’s two races for the U19 gold and silver fleets and U17 fleet got underway in a stable 13 knot breeze with an overcast sky and intermittent rain. The leader board for Tuesday’s concluding two-race battle is now established
No change in the overall series leaders, despite some trouble in the opening race 9 of the day which saw Conrad Konitzer/Fernando Rodriguez (ESP) add an off-form 30th to their U19 scorecard and Ange Delerce/Timothee Rossi (FRA) a 24th to briefly drop from U17 dominance.
The forecast for Tuesday’s medal deciding two races is looking to be around 5-7 knots when racing kicks off at 1200 hours.
After race 9 it was a 1,2,3 to Spanish teams at the head of the 92-boat 420 U19 fleet, with just 1 point separating 3rd and 4th. No change in the top three faces after race 10, just a narrowing of the points gap as trouble hit the series leaders Conrad Konitzer/Fernando Rodriguez, enabling second placed Martin Wizner/Pedro Ameneiro to make gains and also put a few extra points between themselves and third placed Jacobo Garcia/Antoni Ripoll.
Leaders Konitzer/Rodriguez needed a forced error to open the door for other teams to have any hope of unseating them for gold, and that is exactly what happened in race 9 as the pair got caught up in the pack off the starting line and finished in 30th, their first score outside the top eight so far.
"We did an awful start," admitted Kontizer. "Martín and Pedro had a great day but we feel very comfortable with the points difference. Tomorrow will be an easy day, we must avoid mistakes and of course an OCS."
Reigning World and U19 Junior European Champions, Wizner/Ameneiro have been playing it ice-cool and knew their only hope of taking over at the front was for Könitzer/Rodríguez to falter, as Wizner commented ahead of the day’s racing, “It is not in our hands, but if they fail we will still have a chance to fight.”
That fight has now intensified as Könitzer/Rodríguez have shown they are not invincible, but the points mountain remains massive, with 34 points separating the first and second placed teams.
As the series leaders floundered, waiting to pounce were recently crowned U17 World Champions Odysseas Spanakis/Konstaninos Michalopoulos of Greece who took the advantage to seal the race 9 win and edge inside the top ten.
Best points score of the day went to Great Britain’s Jack Lewis/Fraser Hemmings whose results of 2,1 propelled them 16 places up the leader board to 14th overall.
Poland’s Zofia Korsak/Cendrowska Karolina have ascended to claim the top women’s spot in 4th overall, as overnight women’s leaders Marina Garau/Blanca Cabot drop to 9th, with Greece’s Melina Pappa/Maria Tsamopoulou third women’s team in 12th overall.
"We are absolutely focussed, very comfortable to see how we have done along the championship and we wait the improvement will continue tomorrow," reflected Korsak. "The first race today was tough, because the wind was strong and shifty, and it was difficult to make decisions, but the wind was more steady in the second race, which helped us to feel more easy."
Maintain their form and the Polish women have every chance of converting their fourth place to a bronze as they sit just 7 points adrift going into the final day.
Leading the silver fleet are Italy’s sister duo of Carlotta Scodnik/Camilla Scodnik.
Provisional 420 U19 Results - After 10 Races
1. Conrad KONITZER/Fernando RODRIGUEZ (ESP 56259) - 32 pts
2. Martin WIZNER/Pedro AMENEIRO (ESP 56005) - 66 pts
3. Jacobo GARCIA/Antoni RIPOLL (ESP 56675) - 73 pts
4. Zofia KORSAK/Cendrowska KAROLINA (POL 56370) - 80 pts
5. Aviv ROZEN/Tomer HENDEL (ISR 56457) - 81 pts
6. Tal SADE/Noam HOMERI (ISR 54121) - 87 pts
7. Amit BILIA/Gilad CAIN (ISR 56785) - 94 pts
8. Odysseas SPANAKIS/Konstaninos MICHALOPOULOS (GRE 56478) - 102 pts
9. Marina GARAU/Blanca CABOT (ESP 56762) - 104 pts
10. Oliver HURWITZ/Ethan FROELICH (USA 56658) - 110 pts
The point’s differential is close leaving plenty of podium manoeuvring room for the forty team U17 fleet on Tuesday, with just 15 points separating the top 5.
Ange Delerce/Timothee Rossi of France started and ended the day leading the fleet, with just a brief slip to third after their 24th place finish in the opening race of the day, and managed to break the tiebreak with Spain’s Antonio Martino/Joan Catala who hold firm in second, but now with a narrow 3 point separation.
Italy’s Oscar Pouschè/Luca Coslovich won the opening race of the day, following up with a 13th, and close the points gap to the leaders.
An escalation in performance from Jacob Dedes/Aimilios Spanopoulos of Greece who racked up the best results of the day to walk a 3,4 and sit just 1 point off third.
In the women’s fleet, Vanessa Lahrkamp/Katherine Mcnamara of the USA are the top placed team in 6th overall, with Spain’s Neus Ballester/Andrea Perello second in 10th and Israel’s Noga Esther Tiano/Eden Gur third from their 12th place position.
Provisional 420 U17 Results - After 10 Races
1. Ange DELERCE/Timothee ROSSI (FRA 56650) - 52 pts
2. Antonio MARTINO/Joan CATALA (ESP 56150) - 55 pts
3. Oscar POUSCHÈ/Luca COSLOVICH (ITA 56771) - 60 pts
4. Jacob DEDES/Aimilios SPANOPOULOS (GRE 56273) - 61 pts
5. Alberto MORALES/Miguel BETHENCOURT (ESP 56600) - 67 pts
6. Vanessa LAHRKAMP/Katherine MCNAMARA (USA 56364) - 70 pts
7. Lampis GIANNOULIS/Simos MICHALOPOULOS (GRE 54484) - 78 pts
8. Corentin TABORE/Oscar DUTEURTRE (FRA 56721) - 89 pts
9. Neus BALLESTER/Andrea PERELLO (ESP 56769) - 89 pts
10. Federico FIGLIA DI GRANARA/Riccardo FIGLIA DI GRANARA (ITA 56335) - 111 pts
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About the 420 Junior European Championship
The 420 Junior European Championship is open to non-European teams, although the medals will be presented to Europeans teams.
The 420 European Championships is for athletes aged 18 and under at the end of 2019, and each NCA is entitled to 7 entries, with 14 entries for the host nation. The 2019 420 U17 Junior European Championships is for athletes aged 16 and under at the end of 2019. Each NCA is entitled to 3 U17 boats, with 6 boats for the host nation.
Nations competing: Austria, Croatia, France, Germany, Great Britain, Greece, Hong Kong, Ireland, Israel, Italy, New Zealand, Poland, Portugal, Slovenia, Spain, Switzerland, Turkey, USA.
About the International 420 Class Association
The 420 is an established worldwide performance two-person trapeze and spinnaker racing dinghy which holds status as a World Sailing Class and Learn-to-Sail recognized boat.
Written by: Luissa Smith