Saturday, 10 October 2009
A few too many 'dark and stormy's? Image copyright Charles Anderson.
by David Swete
The morning started off on the dock for BlackMatch, as we kept a close eye on the repechage series that would decide the remaining two places in the quarterfinal. After a morning of very shifty conditions, Torvar Mirsky and local sailor Blyth Walker eventually won their way through over some stiff competition and the final 8 were decided.
We were to race former world number one Mathieu Richard and in the tricky conditions managed to get a 2 nil advantage over the Frenchman before the race committee surprisingly called a halt to racing for the day. Poised on match point it was disappointing not to have the chance to close it out today and although we sailed extremely well, we know we have to come out firing tomorrow. Memories of Korea Match Cup when we were in the same position against Paolo Cian and he came storming back to win 3 races in a row are in the back of our minds, however we learnt a big lesson back then and will be focused to get the single victory needed.
In our second match against Richard we nailed the start and extended throughout the race to take a decisive victory however this was not the case in our first match. Adam managed to force a penalty on Mathieu in the prestart but we let the French team off the hook and they held a 2 boat length advantage off the start line. Despite this deficit we picked some good shifts up the first beat and never looked back, winning by a long margin while they also still held a penalty.
All of the matches went to 2 nil today with Ben Ainslie leading Torvar Mirsky, Ian Williams up against reigning champion Johnnie Berntsson and Eric Monnin with the advantage over Blyth Walker. It was a little bizarre they called racing off early today and Ben was quick to bring this up in the press conference, stating that there could be a few ‘red faced’ officials tomorrow, as there are very light airs forecast. We certainly hope this is not the case and are looking forward to some great racing.
BlackMatch would like to thank our sponsors FedEx Express. To the RNZYS and Emirates Team New Zealand, thank you for your support.
World Match Racing Tour