Three races were held at yesterday's Coupe Internationale de l'Amitié in France, a selection event which will determine the teams going forwards to represent France at the 2011 420 Junior European Championships in Niewpoort, Belgium, the 2011 420 European Championships in Portugal and the 2011 ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships in Croatia.
The 109 boats competing were split into two fleets and it was Nicolas Ferrellec and Baptiste Szekely of USAM Voile in Brest who lead after the first day with a scoreline of 1,2,2. They are closely pursued by Denark's Balder Tobiasen and Magnus Jung Johansen who posted a fifth in the opening race followed by two bullets, to sit just 2 points behind the leaders. The next four teams are from France and are all top ranked on the basis of the last major National Championship in La Rochelle in October and only have a point dividing 6th from 5th. This is a serious contest, with potentially three further qualifying races on Thursday before the start of the Final Series.
France’s top ranked women's team Maelenn Lemaitre and Aloise Retornaz, lead the women in tenth overall, while Morgan Kiss and Christina Lewis of USA are the second women's team and in fifteenth overall.
The racing was testing in winds rising to up to 25 knots in the last of the three races. Gulllaume Holin, who with his helm, Yvann Thelier, are currently ranked as the leading 420 team in France came off the water declaring that it had been tiring! He was very happy with the level of competition, which was as they had anticipated. “The sailing is a little different here from Brest, where it is colder! The wind got stronger during the races, up to 25 knots in the last”.
And Aloise Retornaz, who crews with Maelenn Lemaitre, the highest ranked women’s team in France, said “it was very windy and difficult, very much physical sailing!”
It had been a challenging day for Hervé Lohier and his young new young crew, Pauline Boué. At the end of the hard racing she gave her mentor high fives, and they went to their homes to sleep!
Top 10 Overall after 3 Races
1. Nicolas Ferrellec and Baptiste Szekely (FRA - USAM Voile) 5 pts
2. Balder Tobiasen and Magnus Jung Johansen (DEN) 7 pts
3. Yvann Thelier and Gulllaume Holin (FRA - CN Antibes) 9 pts
4. Timothe Petetin and Charles Porez (FRA - SN de Sanary) 9 pts
5. Etienne L’Her and Hugo Lauras (FRA – SR Brest) 9 pts
6. Guillaume Pirouelle and Valentin Sipan (FRA – SNPH) 10 pts
7. Martin Bertrand and Xavier Lara (FRA – SR Rochelaises) 17 pts
8. Olivier Moreau and Romain Bureau (FRA - ASPTT La Rochelle 17 pts
9. Quenten Lootens and Stun van Hoye (BEL) 18 pts
10. Maelenn Lemaitre and Aloise Retornaz (FRA – EV Locquirec/SR Brest) 19 pts