RS:X Medal Day
So how are we doing with the form guide from yesterday?
We already knew the destination of the Gold and Silver in the Men’s event’ with just the Bronze to be decided.
Van Rysselberghe (NED) conformed his Gold Medal in style, winning the medal race and of the three contenders for Bronze, POL, FRA, GRE who sailed each other towards the back of the fleet it was Le Coq (FRA) who came out best to secure the final spot on the podium.
Over in the women’s final Tartaglini’s (ITA) overnight lead evaporated with an 8th place taking her out of the medals completely, in fact all the way down to 6th while joint leader on points Elfutina (RUS) also failed to add Olympic Gold to her Youth World’s Gold from Langkawi in December.
AS this pair only seemed to have “eyes out of the boat” for each other finishing down in 8th and 7th respectively this allowed Picon (FRA) and Chen (CHN) from the group of 3 sailors just 5 points behind coming into the race to leapfrog into Gold & Silver respectively.
A good day for France with a Gold & Bronze on the water.
Over in other classes, Giles Scott did what looked likely from Day 2 of this regatta. He goes into the Medal Race with the gold already hanging round his neck. On his form of the past 4 years then this must have been the most expected winner across, perhaps the whole Olympic Games, not just the Sailing placing the odds of his winning a Gold alongside that o the much higher profile Usain Bolt who was competing in the regatta support event just up the road.
In the men’s 470 Belcher & Ryan (AUS) slipped further back from the world No 1’s Fantela & Marenic (CRO) who remain on target for Croatia’s 1st Sailing Gold while in the women’s event Mills & Clark (GBR) held on to their lead while Haeger & Provancha (USA) moved into a medal position perhaps helping to quiet down a little the noise about US Sailing’s Olympic campaign. Things continue to go awry for the pre-event favourites with another maximum points score of UFD-21 (fleet+1) for Aleh & Powrie (NZL)
In the Nacra 17 Lange & Saroli (ARG) lead the fleet. Surely Santiago (Lange) must be one of the oldest Olympic sailors to be in medal contention and in a young person’s class like the Nacra as well. Not only that, this would be Argentina’s first sailing Gold Medal. Early contenders Saxton & Groves (GBR) have rattled down the fleet while the expected shoe ins for a medal, Besson & Riou (FRA) only shone briefly on one day of the regatta. ARG need to be careful as there are three teams ITA, AUT & AUS with a chance to overhaul them if they are not careful – they can’t cover everyone but with 5 podiums through the series they should have confidence in their boat speed.
In the 49er, yesterday was a lay day and they hit the water again today, hopefully refreshed – lets see what the day brings.
Same for the Lasers, a day of rest before the Medal Race coming up today. It could be the start of a mini-Gold Rush for Croatia with Stipanovic having 4 clear places over Burton (AUS) – I would be surprised if there WASN’T a match race there. In the women’s Boumeester (NED) only needs to keep her eyes on Rindom (DEN) and Murphy (IRL) but if one of them drags her back through the fleet the other could easily pinch the gold. Those are the only two she needs to worry about. Her medal is secure, it is only the colour which is uncertain.
So there we have it, 2 medal races in 8 to go, several sailors with a guarantee of a medal but only the one who knows its colour – a lot to still play for. – Shanghai Sailor.