Olivier Backes and Laurent Voiron lead the Tornado European championship in Portugal

Two races were sailed at the Tornado Europeans, Vilamoura, Portugal yesterday. The first race got underway in 9-11 knots of breeze and lumpy seas. Sven Karsenbarg/Mischa Heemskerk from the Netherlands won the race from Sydney Olympic Gold Medallists Roman Hagara/Hans Steinacher of Austria, with Olivier Backes/Laurent Voiron of France in third place. RYA team GBR sailors Hugh Styles/Adam May found their form, finishing fifth over the line and fourth European.

Several top sailors were caught out for being over the start line early in race two including Hagara/Steinacher. It was a good day for the Dutch, after Mitch Booth/Herbert Dercksen scored a black flag disqualification for starting prematurely in the first race of the day, they recovered to win the second race from team mates Karsenbarg/Heemskerk, with Martin Strandberg/Kristian Matsson of Sweden in third place. The increased pressure of 15 knots suited Styles/May who sailed consistently to finish in seventh place over the line and fifth European, with fellow RYA team GBR sailors Rob Wilson/Will Howden finishing in 13th place and ninth European.

Wilson/Howden now move up the overall standings and are one place off a European medal position, Styles/May did a good day’s work and moved up 11 places to ninth place overall in the European Championship.

Racing continues through until Saturday 11 May with the prize giving the same evening.


European Championship

1, Olivier Backes/Laurent Voiron, FRA (1,4,8,3,4) 20 pts

2, Sven Karsenbarg & Mischa Heemskerk, NED (19,1,17,1,2) 40 pts

3, Andreas Hagara/Michael Seiol, AUT (6,20,2,6,14) 48 pts

RYA team GBR

4, Rob Wilson/Will Howden (16,3,16,18,9) 62 pts

9, Hugh Styles/Adam May (20,19,20,4,5) 68 pts

17, Leigh McMillan/Mark Bulkeley (5,9,5,13,DNF) 87 pts

18, Steven Lovegrove/Martin Sellars (13,25,12,21,19) 90 pts

29, Matthew Eeles/Marcus Lynch (35,24,26,25,28) 138 pts

Open Championship

1, Olivier Backes/Laurent Voiron, FRA (1,7,10,3,5)26 pts

2, Darren Bundock/John Forbes, AUS (3,3,2,7,12) 27 pts

3, Santiago Lange/Carlos Espinola, ARG (2,2,16,4,4) 28 pts