The first day's racing at the 470 world championship took place yesterday in a light breeze
Yesterday marked the start of the 470 world championship in Cagliari, Italy, for the 109 boats entered in the men’s fleet and 60 boats in the women’s fleet. In total 31 nations are represented at this world championships some of whom are contesting for not only the world title but also to qualify their country for the 2004 Olympic Games in Athens. From this championship nine countries will qualify in the men’s fleet and six in the women’s for the 2004 Olympic spots.
Hosted by the Yacht Club Cagliari with the looming Sette Fratelli mountains in the background, racing got underway in the three men’s groups and two women’s groups in 6-10 knots of breeze in the first race before shutting off altogether. All was not lost however, as the sea breeze developed and the second race took place, after a restart, in 13-15 knots and under the yellow flag rule (which allows sailors unlimited pumping of sails and body work to get the most out of the waves, wind and boat).
In the men’s groups, Paul Forester/Kevin Burnham of America had the best day, scoring a first and a second place, to put them at the top of their group. It was also a good day for the French sailors, Philippe Gildas/Nicolas Le Berre sailed consistently to score two second places, while team mates Benjamin Bonnaud/Romain Bonnaud scored a fifth and a first place and Nicolas Charbonnier/Stephane Christidis scored a third and a second place.
In the women’s fleets, both Natalia Via Dufresne/Sandra Azon of Spain and European silver medallists Vlada Ilienko/Diana Krutskih of Russia both scored nine points on the opening day to put them at the top of their respective groups.
Team GBR got off to a good start, Nick Rogers and Joe Glanfield were on good form and after scoring a bronze medal at the Europeans, opened the world championships with a third and a fourth place. Meanwhile in the women’s fleets, Helena Lucas/Jenny Heeley and Josie Gibson/Saskia Clarke both opened the championships with two 11th places, while team mates Christina Bassadone/Catherine Hopson finished the first day with a fourth and a 23rd.
The championships is made up of three days of group qualification followed by five days of gold, silver and bronze fleet finals. In total, 14 races will decide the women’s and men’s world champions. Racing continues this morning with the forecast similar to yesterday.
Men, Yellow group
1, Philippe Gildas/Nicola Le Berre, FRA (2,2) 4 pts
2, Simon Cooke/Peter Nicholas, NZL (1,6) 7 pts
3, Gideon Kliger/Udi Gal, ISR (7,5) 12 pts
24, Mark Plummer/Oliver Hawkley (27,18) 45 pts
Men, Blue group
1, Paul Forester/Kevin Burnham, USA (1,2) 3 pts
2, Benjamin Bonnaud/Romain Bonnaud, FRA (5,1) 6 pts
3, Nathan Wilmot/Malcom Page, AUS (2,5) 7 pts
4, Nick Rogers/Joe Glanfield (3,4) 7 pts
29, John Pink/John Grimson (34,23) 57 pts
32, Guy Tipton/Tom Trueman (27,32) 59 pts
Men, Red group
1, Nicolas Charbonnier/Stephane Christidis, FRA (3,2) 5 pts
2, Andreas Kosmatopoulos/Konstantinos Trigonis, GRE (7,3) 10 pts
3, Gabrio Zandona/Andrea Trani, ITA (5,6) 11 pts
25, Clive Goodwin/Douglas Powell (18,28) 46 pts
31, Graham Vials/Harvey Hillary (25,DSQ) 63 pts
Women, Yellow group
1, Natalia Via Dufresne/Sandra Azon, ESP (7,2) 9 pts
2, Jenny Armstrong/Belinda Stowell, AUS (10,1) 11 pts
3, Stephanie Trubel/Vivien Kussatz,GER (6,7) 13 pts
9, Helena Lucas/Jenny Heeley (11,11) 23 pts
25, Libby Greenhalgh/Roz Bulmer (25,18) 43 pts
Women, Blue group
1, Vlada Ilienko/Diana Krutskih, RUS (1,9) 10 pts
2, Stephanie Rothweiler/Monika Leu, GER (9,3) 12 pts
3, Linur Kliger/Anat Fabrikant, ISR (7,6) 13 pts
11, Josie Gibson/Saskia Clarke (11,11) 22 pts
15, Christina Bassadone/Catherine Hopson (4,23) 27 pts