Off to a good start

The World Sailing Games are underway in Marseilles

Tuesday July 2nd 2002, Author: Maguelonne Turcat, Location: France
The first rounds of the World Sailing Games have been raced in superb conditions for all classes. Sun and wind, Marseilles Bay had a taste of Hawaii today. The 11 to 12 knots morning westerly, strengthened by a thermal breeze, brought the anemometer to around 18 knots at the beginning of the afternoon. "First class conditions to sail in! Fantastic!" remarked Christine Briand, who is lying first in a tie with the Australian team in the J/22 Yellow Fleet. Overall it was a positive day for the favourites as well.

Male and Female Boardsailing - Bic Techno Formula

A great expectation for this first sailboard racing day. Today for the first time, Formula Windsurfing on Bic Techno was part of an ISAF event. Both races were held under favourable windy and sunny conditions.

In the male sailboard, three professional racers have comfortably snatched the first three places today in the overall ranking. Italy's Andrea Cuccchi leads.

Another Italian ranks top in the female sailboard. Olympic Gold Medallist Alessandra Sensini has smoothly transferred to this new Formula concept. France's Lise Vidal, a last-minute entry in this event, seems to have also taken the change in her stride "Maybe I was not in shape during the selection process; here I've very quickly found my mark and I've got good speed," she said.

The only surprise today, but quite a big one, in China's Zhang Chujun who holds second place overall after today's racing. "The Chinese have been working very hard in view of the 2008 Beijing Games. We should have kept an eye on them," commented French coach Pascal Chaullet.

Sailboard male - Overall results before Jury decisions after two races :
1st Cucchi Andréa (ITA) 2 pts, 2nd Benoît Moussilmani (FRA) 5 pts ; 3rd Oberemko Maksim (UKR) 5 pts.

Sailboard female - Overall results before Jury decisions after two races :
1st Alessandra Sensini (Ita) 2pts ; 2nd Zhang Chujun (Chn) 6 pts ; 3rd Lise Vidal (FRA) 8 pts.

Single-handed female - Radial Laser
A big swell and medium wind : with these conditions you have to go fast to be in front. Ideal conditions for the Laser specialists. But competitors used to Radial Laser equipment have shown an advantage over their Olympic Europe class contenders. France's Sophie de Turckheim dominated this first racing day, winning the two rounds. But she will have to watch closely over her direct opponents, Poland's Katarzyna Szotynska, Italy's Larisa Nevierov, Croatia's Gea Barbic and Great Britain's Nicky Muller.

"With short rounds, a good start is essential. The high swell was demanding and required a good physical shape. I really enjoyed the leeward tacks, the boat flew in the waves!", said Sophie de Turckheim.

Single-handed female - Radial Laser - Overall results after two races
1. Sophie de Turckheim (FRA), 2 pts 2. Katarzyna Szotynska (POL), 4 pts 3. Gea Barbic (CRO), 6 pts

Single handed male - Standard Laser / Yellow Fleet
In this group also, all competitors enjoyed the perfect weather conditions prevailing in Marseilles Bay. A stable medium wind enabled all racers to fly over the water. In a tight fleet, the tactics were very important with any mistakes dearly paid for. Many favourites bitterly felt this as they wrongly rounded the mark at a leeward tack in the second round. This has created an interesting situation at the end of this first qualifying series.

Single handed male - Standard Laser / Yellow Fleet - Overall results after two races
1. Gareth Blanckenberg (RSA), 6 pts ; 2. Evagelos Simonas (GRE), 7 pts ; 3rd ex aequo Mate Arapov (CRO), 10 pts , Robert Scheidt (BRA), 10 pts et 3. Gustavo Lima (POR), 10 pts

Mixed Multihull - Hobie Cat 16

In this class a real war for the first places is taking place. Rarely have so many champions been seen together at the starting line. With three third places in a tie, among them two World Champion teams, Australians Gavin Colby and Simone Matfield (Hobie Cat 16 2002), the forecast is for an exciting succession of racing days.

Multihull mixed - Hobie Cat 16 / - Overall results after two races

1. Alberto Sonino-Adria Guarnieri (ITA), 4 pts ; 2. Enrique Figueroa-Car Malatrasi, (PUR), 7 pts ; 3. Shaun Ferry-Alison Ball (RSA), 11 pts ; 4. Gavin Colby-Simone Matfield (AUS), 11 pts ; 5. Christophe Renaud-Alban Rossollin (FRA), 11 pts

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