Day number four in the Nacra 17 Worlds proved the longest day so far – by far!
Cloudy skies and strong winds with gusts up to 28 knots dominated the race courses and the sailing venue already from the early morning.
The Gold Fleet got ready to go out for a day of three races with a scheduled first start at 1100 hours while the Silver Fleet sailors prepared for their three races scheduled to go off at 1400 hours.
After an hour of failed attempts to signal the first start the races were postponed indefinitely. It didn’t take long before it was clear to both sailors and people on land that the stormy Autumn-like weather had other plans for the gold fleet sailors.
Frustrated and wind-swept the sailors rolled ashore and all they could do was watch the weather getting worse and the signaling flags being hoisted by the race management repeatedly to postpone the races indefinitely. Soon the wind got stronger with gusts up to 38 knots.
Silver Fleet Races Cancelled
When a change in the weather system finally occurred, late afternoon had arrived and the consequences of the dramatic weather were inescapable; the scheduled Silver Fleet races were cancelled entirely, leaving the Gold Fleet sailors with the delicate hope of still seeing through their part of the competition.
Thus, Silver Fleet remains unaltered after fourth day of the championship.
The U.S. duo Steph Hudson and Evan Aras are still in the lead followed by the aspiring young Danish team Ida Svensson and Rasmus Rosengren decorate and the New Zealand team Olivia Mackay and Micah Wilkinson.
The Belgian team with Carolijn Brouwer and Morgan Good are also to be found among the Silver Fleet sailors at the time of writing, as are teams like Russian Maxim Semenov/Alina Shchetinkina, U.S. Mark Mendelblatt/Carolina Mendelblatt and Japanese Hiroki Goto/Wakako Tabata.
Gold Fleet’s Late Night Drama
At 1800 hours Gold Fleet received the redeeming message to get ready for racing and at 1900 hours in the evening on day four the first of three races was jump-started.
The results of today’s races proved as unpredictable as the Danish summer weather as the Gold Fleet teams shuffled rankings already from the first race.
The French world champions ended up 23, 1 and 1 while yesterday’s no. 15, the Dutch team Mandy Mulder/Coen De Koning made a 1, 2 and 15.
One of the truly shooting stars at the Nacra 17 Worlds, the young German team Paul Kohlhoff and Carolina Werner, came in 8, 9 and 3. For the Germans, racing for medals at the Worlds is not their only aim as Germany – due to their accomplishments – now stands a more than fair chance of winning one of the four remaining spots for the Rio Olympics in 2016.
Another team who stands a fair chance of conquering one of the remaining Rio 16 spots is the Aruban team Velden/Visser who came in 5, 13 and 16.
The two Danish teams in the Gold Fleet, Nørregaard/Viborg (23, 14 and 4) and Cenholt Christiansen/Lübeck (9, 5 and DNF) were struck by bad luck and injuries leaving both teams a little further down the list than before today’s race.
The Italian team Bressani/Micol had an excellent day on the water racing 4, 8 and 15. As did Australia’s Waterhouse/Darmanin with a 6, 3 and 8.
Thus, after tonight’s dramatic Gold Fleet racing the preliminary top ten looks like this:
1. Besson/Riou (FRA)
2. Waterhouse/Darmanin (AUS)
3. Kohlhoff/Werner (GER)
4. Mulder/De Koning (NED)
5. Jones/Saunders (NZL)
6. Velden/Visser (ARU)
7. Bissro/Sicouri (ITA)
8. Nørregaard/Viborg (DEN)
9. Gimson/Diamond (GBR)
10. Matinez/Casanova (ESP)
See the whole ranking of the Gold Fleet here.
The weather forecast for tomorrow reports even worse conditions than today – hopefully the Danish weather will prove the meteorologists wrong as it has done so many times before.