tricky in italy

race report

tricky in italy

Robert Deaves shares the latest on the Finn Euro’s…

It’s been a difficult time so far for the 69 Finn sailors at the 2012 Senior and Junior European Championships in Scarlino, Italy. The wind has not really been on side at all apart from on Monday, day one of the event, and after the first three days only three races have been sailed. Tuesday was a complete loss and Wednesday wasn’t much better with six hours afloat and only one race to show for it. The forecast for the rest of the week isn’t looking much better either.

However if the results so far are anything to go by it should be a fascinating series if the wind shows up. Leader after three races, Rafael Trujillo, from Spain, won an Olympic silver medal in 2004 and the world championship in 2007, but has never collected a medal at a Europeans after more years in the class than he cares to remember. The inconsistent conditions are helping his cause as sailors are picking up high scores left right and centre, but there is still a long way to go.

Second placed is Florian Raudaschl from Austria, son of the famous Hubert Raudaschl (who holds the record for competing in the most Olympics). Florian has yet to compete in one himself but after putting in some training over the winter he is looking more comfortable and confident than ever as he approaches the final Olympic qualification event in Falmouth at the Finn Gold Cup in less than two months time.

In third is Pieter Jan Postma, from the Netherlands, who recently finished as runner up at the Finn Gold Cup in Perth and was probably the favourite to take this event. But for a missed opportunity on Wednesday when he missed a course change, he could well have been leading by now. He has been putting in a lot of effort to improve his light wind speed, normally being renowned for his heavy wind abilities, so could be a serious challenger.

Behind these three, there are a lot of sailors really close, with 2007 European Champion Eduard Skornyakov from Russia in fourth, double European Champion Ivan Kljakovic Gaspic from Croatia in seventh, and race one winner Vasilij Zbogar in eighth. Trujillo won the second race, while Giorgio Poggi from Italy, in ninth, took Wednesday’s only race.

At the half way stage, there are still more races to sail than have been sailed, with a possible seven more on the cards. With the wind conditions we have at the moment, that looks unlikely but the race team are trying to get in three per day for the next two days. We need two more to make enough to have a medal race on Saturday.

You can follow the racing live on the event blog right here.