Friday, 28 May 2010

Finn World Masters day three: 26 May

Maier takes slim lead at Finn Masters after evening race

Brigitte Devillerst (FRA). Image copyright Tosca Zambra.

by Robert Deaves

It was situation normal at Split again on Wednesday. The 167 sailors at the Finn World Masters sat onshore until 17.00 before finally going out to sail just one race. Race wins for Michael Maier (CZE) and Attila Szilvassy (HUN) leaves Maier with a one point lead over Marco Buglielli (ITA), who picked up a second. A sixth for Michael Gubi (AUT) leaves him in third overall.

The business of the day started with the annual Masters meeting with the principal job being deciding future championship venues. The meeting voted to make the UK the centre of Finn sailing in 2012, with the World Masters being awarded to Pwllheli in North Wales. Also in 2012, the Finn Gold Cup is being held in Falmouth, UK, and, of course, the Olympics are in Weymouth. For the 2013 event, the current candidates are Cannes and Balaton.

After a long wait for the sailors, the breeze finally filled in very late at about 5 pm and the RC called the fleet onto the water. One race was sailed in a nice 10 knots westerly which decreased to 8 knots in the outer loop.

Michael Maier. Image copyright Tosca Zambra.

In the RED fleet Michael Maier started at the committee boat and immediately tacked to port and went all the way to the right followed by Michael Gubi. They rounded the top mark followed by the Francesco Cinque (ITA), who found a nice lift from the left and showed good speed, and Allen Burrell (GBR).

Downwind Marco Buglielli was making gains and rounded in fourth, but on the second upwind Burrell and John Heyes (GBR) went to the right and made up ground to round in second and fourth just a few boat lengths behind Maier, while Gubi lost few places on the left and rounded sixth.

Marco Buglielli. Image copyright Tosca Zambra.

On the final downwind and the reach to the finish Buglielli again showed good speed and rounded in second, followed by fellow Cinque, Heyes and Burrell.

In the BLUE fleet, sailing the inner loop, it was Attila Szilvassy (HUN) who made the best of the first upwind to round in front of Lars Hall (DEN) and Christen Christoph (SUI).

Attila Szilvassy. Image copyright Tosca Zambra.

On the first downwind, race two winner Peter Mosny (SVK) came through to take the lead while Szilvassy slipped back to third. Mosny held the lead until the final reach to the finish when Szilvassy slipped past to retake the lead and win the race. Mosny crossed in second while Christoph finished third.

The fleet went in after 8 pm as the sun was setting.

Finns sailing into the sunset. Image copyright Tosca Zambra.

Maier and Buglielli are now separated by just one point but have a clear lead at the top. Gubi is eight points back in third. Hall climbs one place to fourth and Burrell also climbs one place to fifth. The defending champion Andre Budzien (GER) placed 11th on Wednesday to sit in sixth place.

After three days the Masters have sailed just three races, though the coffee shop is doubtless raking in lots of profit. Four races are required to make a series and that will hopefully happen Thursday when stronger winds are forecast. The championship concludes on Friday.

Finn World Masters