Capitalise or catch up - World Cup Final Santander
|Santander was baked in sunshine for the second day of World Cup racing as sailors looked to either capitalise on a great opening day, or play catch up after slow starts.
Conditions were near on perfect for the 260 sailors from 41 nations racing across the ten Olympic fleets and Open Kiteboarding. Not a cloud in the sky and 11-15 knots of breeze coming from the north east enabled a full on day of racing.
Sailors who had slow starts yesterday (6 June) used the day to make amends for any mistakes and climb the leaderboard. The overnight leaders, meanwhile, looked to maintain their focus and keep hold of the top spots.
Spain’s Fernando Echavarri and Tara Pacheco were on form in the Mixed Multihull, Nacra 17, winning two races and claiming a second. Echavarri and Pacheco know Santander very well and have spent many hours training and racing on the waters. So when the pair saw the forecast they knew what had to be done, “Today we could not afford any mistakes. The weather is very typical of Santander so it was an easy day to read the conditions.
“The key point today was to have a good start and have good speed. That is it.”
They dominated the first two races and were unlucky not to claim a third. Echvarri concluded, “In the third race we had some problems but we managed to recover from it and we almost took first place. There is still a long way to go but we are happy to know we are performing well. As I like to say, we’re taking it step by step.”
Tom Phipps and Nicola Boniface (GBR) and Ruggero Tita and Caterina Marianna Banti (ITA) occupy the final podium spots after six races.
Rio 2016 Olympic gold medallist Hannah Mills sailing with Eilidh McIntyre (GBR) stole the show in the Women’s Two Person Dinghy, 470. Mills, who has been sailing in the 49erFX recently, has made a temporary switch back to the 470 and had no trouble finding her feet on the second day of competition. The British pair claimed a pair of race wins and lead Afrodite Zegers and Anneloes van Veen (NED) who have not lost a regatta in 2017.
It’s the early stages of the competition with six fleet races and a Medal Race to go so Zegers and van Veen will remain focused on continuing their run.
Lukasz Przybytek and Pawel Kolodzinski (POL) hold onto their advantage in the Men’s Skiff, 49er. A steady string of races gives them a one point advantage over James Peters and Fynn Sterritt (GBR). Dylan Fletcher and Stu Bithell (GBR) were the standout racers in the 49er, grabbing a pair of race wins and a third to move into third spot overall, within sight of the leaders.
There is still very little separation in the 49erFX, Women’s Skiff, with eight points splitting the top six. Charlotte Dobson and Saskia Tidey (GBR) are in pole position following a 3-2-1 day.
By Daniel Smith – World Sailing