Australian's lifting in Athens

Day two of the sailing regatta at the 2004 Paralympic Games in Athens, and the conditions are proving every bit as variable as they were for the Olympics.

Competition overnight was unpredictable and at other times quite easy to read. The first race on both the 2.4mR and Sonar courses started in a northerly 14-knot land breeze, shifting both ways near the top marks.

Halfway through racing the wind eased to 100 degrees and the Race Committee on the 2.4mR course sat and waited as the race turned into a shambles.

While over on the Sonar course the race committee were forced to change the marks.

Race two on both courses started in a light SW breeze, which was quite stable until the sea breeze came in from the right at the end of the 2.4mR race, and just before the last lap of the Sonar race.

The Australian Sonar crews successful protest against day one leaders Israel, for an infringement at a mark in race two, sees the trio jump two places to second overall and the Israeli team plummet to 7th.

The Aussies consolidated on day two, coming from behind in both races. With nearly half the series over the crew from Western Australia are yet to record a bad race.

'The boys are doing it tough with very ordinary starts in both today’s races, but with good speed and low handling errors they finished 6th and 5th,' Sonar coach Geoff Chambers reports from Athens.

In the 2.4mR class Australia representative Peter Thompson (ACT), led the first race of the day, but failed to get in phase on the second lap, losing a top place finish.

In the tightly packed fleet the first five across the line finished within 30 seconds of each other.

A change of wind in the second race caught Thompson unawares, again pushing him from the top of the fleet to finish 4th.

Although still in medal contention, Thompson will need to record a solid third day to stay in touch.

The United States dominates the Saronic Gulf after two days of racing. They lead both the Sonar and 2.4mR classes.

Two more races are scheduled for the Sonar class tomorrow, while the 2.4mR fleet will take a break.

Sonar - Day Two (4 races)

1. John Ross Duggan/Jean Paul Creignou/Bradley Johnson (USA) (3,1,3,6) 13pts

2. Jamie Dunross/Jeff Milligan/Colin Harrison (AUS) (2,6,6,5) 19pts

3. Udo Hessels/Marcel van de Veen/Mischa Rossen (NED) (6,4,5,4) 19pts

2.4mR - Day Two (4 races)

1. Thomas Brown (USA) (4,2,1,1) 8pts

2. Damien Seguin (FRA) (1,1,4,5) 11pts

3. Heiko Kroeger (GER) (2,4,3,3,) 12pts

6. Peter Thompson (AUS) (10,5,5,4) 24pts