Light winds provide the big shot, but no racing in Tavira
Expert weather gurus aside, nothing was going to get the wind to blow in Tavira at the 2011 420 Open and Ladies European Championships today, on what should have been day 5 of racing.
Expert weather gurus aside, nothing was going to get the wind to blow in Tavira at the 2011 420 Open and Ladies European Championships today, on what should have been day 5 of racing. Hopeful for an early wind, rather than the usual afternoon breeze, the Race Committee yesterday advised a warning signal for 1000 hours, but it was obvious when teams looked out from their balconies this morning that the wind would not arrive for then.
A postponement ashore saw teams patiently passing time, from swimming to slipway volleyball, reading to guitar playing. The most action was the photo call, which gathered 278 sailors from 139 competing teams and 26 nations on the slipway for the big shot, captured by event photographer Matias Capazzano. Paying tribute to their fellow sailor Paolillo Luca who tragically passed away in May 2011, the Italian team donned the bibs they have been wearing all week emblazoned with the name “Lillo” whilst other team members raised a “Lillo Forever” banner.
An early decision to postone racing to later in the afternoon saw most teams then head back to their hotel pools, before re-emerging at the venue in mid-afternoon, only to have what they anticipated confirmed - racing was abandoned for the day. The Race Committee decision delivered a whoop from the sailors who were clearly not keen to race in the light conditions and happy to head back to the hotel pools.
Seizing the gap in the racing programme, the 420 Class held a Coaches Meeting to discuss a number of issues from event format to Rule 42.
The 2011 420 Open and Ladies European Championships now heads into its final day, Friday 29 July, with 9 races of the scheduled 12 race series held. The warning signal for racing is at 1300 hours tomorrow with the gold fleets heading on to the race track first. The latest a warning signal can be given is 1700 hours, so there is good time to get at least one and possibly two races in if the breeze delivers.
Feeling fairly relaxed this evening will be Alexander and George Kavas who have sailed a perfect series to lead the Open fleet by 16 points. Based on their performance so far, we can be fairly certain that the gold medals will be around their necks tomorrow evening, but these modest siblings for sure will not be counting on that quite yet. In the hunt behind them and on an equal 50 points apiece are Jacopo Cunial/Michele Inchiostri (ITA) and Clovis Leroux/Aymeric Paruit (FRA), with the Italians only having the edge on countback. The entire top ten are very close so it is really is going need to be the perfect race a team delivers tomorrow to secure their place on the podium or top ten.
In the Ladies fleet, it was all change yesterday when Italy's Cristina Celli/Silvia Morini pushed the French team of Jennifer Poret/Louise Chevet from the number one slot. With just 2 points dividing these two, 22 points against 24, they are set for a battle. Behind the two frontrunners are Paulina Rothlauf/Madlen Geisler (GER) and Linda Fahrni/Maja Siegenthaler (SUI) who are also in their own close points battle and likely to be fighting for third place.
Tactics are going to change significantly depending on what the wind does tomorrow and whether the teams are in for a one, two or possibly three race final day.