Favourites come to the fore

Mateusz Kusznierewicz continues to dominate Finn Europeans in La Rochelle

Thursday May 13th 2004, Author: Corinne McKenzie, Location: France
Despite an intense battle raging on the waters off La Rochelle, Polish sailor Mateusz Kusznierewicz continues to dominate the Finn Europeans and today sailed front of the fleet to win the first race by a large margin, while he finish third in the second race at first place was contended right up until the finish by Ben Ainslie and Karlo Kuret. Eventually the Croatian, who is one of the most experienced Finn sailors of the Championship with three Olympiads under his belt, ultimately got the better of the World champion within a few meters of the line.

The first race started with 12 knots. The Oscar flag, allowing free pumping, was displayed at the top mark. Guillaume Florent was first to round followed by Kusznierewicz, Ainslie and Mattias Miller from Germany. At the leeward mark, Kusznierewicz had passed the Frenchman with Ainslie moving up to second position.

On the second beat the Pole enjoyed a big shift on the extreme left side of the course that propelled him out of reach from his followers. Florent caught up Ainslie and stayed on his tail until the last beat. The Frenchman and Michael Fellmann who had both sailed further to the left made some ground on Ainslie, to take second and third place in front of the World Champion.

With more wind on the second race, Oscar was displayed at the start of the triangle course. The wind had built to 14-17 knots. After several general recalls, the Black flag sent eight sailors back home. Ben Ainslie cleared out at the start, followed closely by Kuret and Kusznierewicz. Kuret, showed good speed and pointing higher than his rival, gained some ground until within 100m of the finish, the Croatian passed the Ainslie to win the race. Kusznierewicz crossed the line in third position followed by Gasper Vincec and Marin Misura.

Iacopo Tacchino was the best Junior in both races in 43rd and 36th place.

With races sailed Kusznierewicz is leading the regatta including a third place discard, ahead of Ben Ainslie and Sebastien Godefroid.

The battle for Olympic selection is getting intense between the three Kiwis, who are now within three points of each other, with Team New Zealand skipper Dean Barker sixth, Clifton Webb seventh after collecting a black flag today, and Peter Fox eighth.

British sailors Andrew Simpson and Matt Howard are lying 16th and 45th respectively.

Results

Pos Sailor Nat R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 Tot Pnts
1 KUSZNIEREWICZ Mateusz POL 2 2 2 1 3 10 7
2 AINSLIE Ben GBR 28 4 1 4 2 39 11
3 GODEFROID Sébastien BEL 1 6 3 35 7 52 17
4 FLORENT Guillaume FRA 11 5 9 2 13 40 27
5 PAPATHANASIOU Emilios GRE 29 1 4 17 8 59 30
6 BARKER Dean NZL 4 37 6 18 10 75 38
7 WEBB Clifton NZL 3 9 19 9 BFD 131 40
8 FOX Peter NZL 6 15 35 14 6 76 41
9 HOGH-CHRISTENSEN Jonas DEN 13 7 7 24 19 70 46
10 FELLMANN Michael GER 52 11 20 3 17 103 51
11 ADAKAN Ali Enver TUR 14 46 12 7 18 97 51
12 ZIELHUIS Jaap NED 8 54 10 10 24 106 52
13 CLARKE Richard CAN 17 35 11 13 12 88 53
14 HOLM Soren DEN 5 10 25 30 15 85 55
15 NOSSITER Anthony AUS 53 8 13 25 9 108 55
16 SIMPSON Andrew GBR 41 3 24 5 30 103 62
17 TILLANDER Johan SWE 10 20 63 15 21 129 66
18 KURET Karlo CRO 21 26 26 19 1 93 67
19 VINCEC Gasper SLO 40 50 14 11 4 119 69
20 SIGNORINI JoÆo BRA 20 24 15 20 16 95 71
21 MISURA Marin CRO 19 42 23 27 5 116 74
22 TRUJILLO Rafael ESP 33 17 33 8 23 114 81
23 ADERMAN Kristian SWE 42 23 40 6 14 125 83
24 VIALI Nenad CRO 34 16 31 12 33 126 92
25 O'GRADY Aaron IRL 7 22 29 59 35 152 93
26 SZUKIEL Rafal POL 9 12 49 28 45 143 94
27 KRUTSKIKH Vladimir RUS 44 25 21 38 20 148 104
28 BRUNO Ismaël FRA 32 53 5 40 28 158 105
29 COOK Christopher CAN 12 32 47 23 54 168 114
30 COLLA Alejandro ARG 43 28 18 36 32 157 114
31 MUELLER VON BLUMENCRON Othmar SUI 51 13 38 34 34 170 119
32 RAUDASCHL Florian AUT 16 64 30 48 25 183 119
33 MARCHESINI Michele ITALIE 26 21 43 29 50 169 119
34 LIU Bo CHN 24 69 8 26 BFD 218 127
35 HAJDU Balazs HUN 15 51 39 62 22 189 127
36 DE VRIES Stefan NED 27 61 36 33 31 188 127
37 CHERNOV Evgeny RUS 64 29 32 41 26 192 128
38 BIRGMARK Daniel SWE 31 18 44 47 38 178 131
39 MAIER Michael CZE 65 63 22 37 11 198 133
40 GONG Lei CHN 30 14 BFD 45 47 227 136
41 BURGER Christoph SUI 35 43 37 21 BFD 227 136
42 ALSOGARAY Julio ARG 58 47 17 54 27 203 145
43 BORYSOV Oleksiy UKR 70 27 28 46 46 217 147
44 BOYD Bryan USA 23 44 69 22 62 220 151
45 HOWARD Matthew GBR 46 48 27 31 51 203 152
46 BURROWS David IRL 54 38 16 52 BFD 251 160
47 NIRKKO Tapio FIN 36 36 61 53 41 227 166
48 THEURER Peter SUI 49 31 56 65 37 238 173
49 MILLER Mattias GER 57 77 53 16 48 251 174
50 KAPITONOV Vladislav RUS 38 65 54 44 44 245 180

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