Saturday, 10 October 2009
WAKA Racing protest as they are pushed on to the buoy. Image copyright Charles Anderson.
by Garth Ellingham
Competition here is fierce and the format is ruthless. With 3 groups of 8 we needed to qualify in the top 4 in to go through to the next stage. The top two spots in each group automatically qualify for the quarter finals and the next two move to a repechage round to fight for the remaining two spots in the top 8. We drew a very hard group, Peter Gilmour, Jonny Berntsen and Mathieu Richard have all won the regatta in the past, with Blythe Walker and Mattias Rahm also making the semi finals at in the competition a couple of years ago.
Our solid day yesterday set a great foundation to work off today. We had two wins on the board and knew we needed at least two more to move through. We made quick work of this by taking down Charlie Enright and Don Wilson in our first two races putting us in a good spot on the points board. We then had a slightly disappointing race against Walker, coming off the line behind and with a penalty, the team did a fantastic job catching up. We set up a trap to get rid of our penalty but unfortunately copped another in the process and couldn't come back from there.
With 4 wins, 3 losses on the board we finished 4th in our group and moved through to the next stage ahead of Peter Gilmour and Mattias Rahm. A great achievment for the team to beat them both considering it is our first time competing here in these difficult boats.
The repechage round started with one race for us this afternoon which was unfortunately a loss. We got pinned out in the start and couldn't quite gain enough ground to attack Bjorn Hansen who crossed the line first. Four tough races to go tomorrow which we are all amped for and have our eyes set on making the quarter finals.
Thanks for all you support and encouragement.
From the 'Island of Love',
World Match Racing Tour