Wednesday, 22 June 2011
49er start. Image copyright Kieler Woche 2011.
by Daniel Smith
Denmark’s Peter Kruger-Andersen and Nicolai Thorsell will go up against compatriots Allan Norregaard and Peter Lang in the 49er Medal Race as the Danes rule the roost after four days of racing at Kieler-Woche, the final ISAF Sailing World Cup regatta.
After 15 races in the 49er just five points separate the Danes with Kruger-Andersen and Thorsell leading the way on 69 points. Throughout the week the lead has changed hands on numerous occasions in the 49er but with just the Medal Race to go the gold medal may be on its way to Denmark.
With three race wins Norregaard and Lang have recorded more race victories than their compatriots, who only have a solitary win. But after a busy schedule, which saw the 49er teams’ sail in four races on three of four days, it is Kruger-Andersen and Thorsell who have proved to be the most consistent and take a slender advantage into the Medal Race.
Behind the Danes are two German teams in the form of World #16 duo Tobias Schadewaldt and Hannes Baumann and World #20 pair Lennart Briesenick-Pudenz and Morten Massman. The pair should not be ruled out as they sit on 77 and 79 points respectively.
Away from the 49er it was a frustrating fourth day for sailors with some racing in classes cancelled due to light winds but for Przemyslaw Miarczynski (POL), he added another race win to his card to guarantee at least a silver medal in the Men’s RS:X. The Polish sailor has been in emphatic form throughout the week notching up seven race wins out of the nine he has sailed. He did not sail Race 10 and discards the automatic 45th place to go into the Medal Race on 12 points.
If Miarczynski does not start the Medal Race he will still seal at least a silver medal as Michael Majewski (POL), in third on 33 points, can not catch his compatriot even if he records his first race win in the Medal Race.
Toni Wilhelm (GER) has looked impressive this week recording six second place finishes to sit behind Miarczynski on 20 points. But he has not been able cope with Miarczynski who has simply looked unstoppable. For Wilhelm to have a chance of claiming the gold medal he has to win the Medal Race and hope that the Polish sailor finishes fifth or worse.
The Women’s RS:X Medal Race will be a closer affair as Jessica Crisp (AUS) and Moana Delle (GER) enter the final day with just one point separating them at the top of the leader board. Crisp jumped from fourth to first after finishing 3-4 on the penultimate day whilst Delle retained her second place.
For Blanca Manchon (ESP), she dropped from first to third place after two 12th place finishes in Race 9 and 10. The Spanish ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year has posted some strong results this week but ultimately her three 12th place finishes, her first came in Race 3, have pushed her down to third place trailing the leader by nine points. But with Crisp and Delle likely to fight it out between them, Manchon could sneak in to take the gold medal.
Only one race was possible in the Star class and it was won by Alexander Hagen and Marko Hasche (GER). Despite not starting the sole race of day four, Fredrik Loof and Max Salminen (SWE) continue to lead on 16 points. Flavio Marazzi and Enrico De Maria (SUI) are second on 19 points and Eivind Melleby and Petter Morland Pedersen (NOR) are third on 22 points. It should be an entertaining Medal Race in the Star class with a number of results possible.
Germany’s Kathrin Kadelbach and Friederike Belcher won the only Women’s 470 race on the fourth day to close the gap on Erin Maxwell and Isabelle Kinsolving (USA) to just two points. The Americans came seventh in Race 9 whilst Tina Lutz and Susann Beucke (GER), who are third overall, finished one place ahead in sixth. Just four points separate first and third in the Women’s 470.
In the Women’s Match Racing competition it was an all Australian battle in the first semi final as Nicky Souter faced Olivia Price. And it was the former who came out on top defeating Price 3-1. Meanwhile in the second semi final Ekaterina Skudina (RUS) and Genevieve Tulloch (RUS) had a closer contest with the Russian coming out on top with a 3-2 victory.
And in the 2.4mR despite an OCS in Race 9 Megan Pascoe (GBR) came from behind to clinch the gold medal. Trailing Heiko Kroger (GER) for the majority of the week Pascoe finished second in the final race whereas the German went 9-6 to fall to second place. Sweden’s Hans Asklund claimed bronze.
There was no racing on the fourth day in the Laser, Laser Radial, Finn or the Men’s 470. So the top ten in each class will go into the Medal Race with it all to play for.
The Finn and Women’s RS:X get the Medal Races underway tomorrow starting at 10:30 local time.