London Olympics 2012: Sailing Olympics Newsletter - Day 7

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London 2012 - Olympic Games - Day 7 - Mens Windsurfing start
Carlo Borlenghi/FIV - copyright
Welcome to Sail-World.com's 2012 Olympic Newsletter for Day 7, August 4, 2012

The first events are close to being concluded at the 2012 Olympic Regatta, and in less than 24 hours the first medals will be presented at Weymouth.

For hosts, Great Britain, a lot hangs on the line tomorrow.

While the British would seem all but assured of a gold medal in the Mens Keelboat, with Ian Percy and Andrew Simpson looking set to defend their 2008 Olympic title, in the Star class. They must finish within four places of the second placed Robert Scheidt (BRA), and six of the third placed Fredrik Loof (SWE).

But matters are a lot more edgy in the Mens Heavyweight Dinghy, better known as the Finn, with Ben Ainslie endeavoring to win his fourth Olympic Gold medal. The points permutations are endless, suffice to say that the first home of Ainslie and Jonas Hogh-Christensen (DEN) should win. Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) can also get into the money, if the first two decide to have a match race down at the back of the fleet.

Currently the plan is for the racing to take place on the Nothe course in front of a capacity crowd, who will certainly be cheering for Ainslie.

London 2012 - Olympic Games - DAY 7 - Photo : FIV/ Carlo Borlenghi - London Olympics 2012 day 7
Carlo Borlenghi/FIV - copyright

Today the Womens Match Racing wound into a new phase, the Knockout, with eight teams going forward and four being eliminated. The final cut was decided today with the New Zealand team losing their final match against the second placed Russian team. That result forced them into a tiebreaker, on which they found themselves on the wrong side of the formula.

Racing continued in the 470 Mens and Womens events, with racing being held on Weymouth Bay, which was back to its standard state for this regatta – seas of up to two metres, winds flicking around the 15-18kts mark. Conditions which proved a test for competitors. Surprising the boat handling errors were few.

It was a similar story on the Mens and Womens Singlehanded course, where the Laser and Laser Radial fleets have worked themselves to a near conclusion, but the outcomes could not be more different.

London Olympics 2012 day 7
Carlo Borlenghi/FIV - copyright

In the Mens Singlehander, Australia’s Tom Slingsby is more than making up for a poor performance in Qingdao – widely attributed to a soft supplied boat. In Weymouth he enjoys a healthy 14 point lead with just the Medal Race to come. In fact the Medal race is largely academic with second placed Pavlos Kontides having to win and Slingsby to finish worse than eighth.

The third placed competitor is 21 points behind second place – a position which is very unlikely to change after the Medal Race – however Tonici Stipanovic (CRO) is just one point adrift, and the Medal Race is expected to be a Battle for the Bronze.`

August 4, 2012 - Weymouth, England - The fancied British crew Lucy and Kate MacGregor and Annie Lush check oiut the course on the final day of the qualification round in the Womens Match Racing

However the Main Event is definitely in the Finn. Already the non-sailing media are pouring into the Sailing Media Centre in Weymouth. More are expected tomorrow. We'll have the results as soon as they happen.

In this edition of Sail-World’s Olympic newsletter we have all the background and reports on today's racing, along with some great images from some of the world’s top photographers.

We’ll all be back in action tomorrow – stay tuned to www.sail-world.com

Good sailing!

Richard Gladwell
Olympic Editor

August 4, 2012 - Weymouth, England - Dorian van Rijsselberge (NED) coached by Aaron MacIntosh (NZL) leads the Mens Windsurfer (RS:X) by a 13pt margin