Olympic gold medallist Iain Percy and crew Steve Mitchell finished sixth overall in the 93-boat Star class at the Bacardi Cup last week
Olympic gold medallist Iain Percy and crew Steve Mitchell finished sixth overall in the 93-boat Star class at the Bacardi Cup last week.
After a disappointing start, where they were disqualified in the first race for starting prematurely, which they followed up with a 44th, they quickly redeemed themselves in the second half of the regatta, and were the only sailors to win more than one race.
Percy commented: “Conditions were poor at the beginning of the week and we had a disastrous start to the first race. We were black-flagged in the first outing for a false start and then put in a disappointing 44th in the third race but once the weather picked up we’ve been able to get into our stride and two out of the last three races finished in a victory for us. The preparations are going well.”
The final race of the event was postponed over an hour and racing finally got underway after two general recalls. On the third start, 20 boats jumped the gun including, for the second time in the event, Olympic champion Mark Reynolds and crew Steve Erickson.
Afonso Domingos and Bernado Santos of Portugal had no need to sail the final race as their consistency had paid out and saw them win the 2004 Bacardi Cup with a race to spare. However, the battle for the rest of the podium positions was still going to be hotly contested.
The final race win went to John Maccausland and Brad Nichol of America who finished just in front of Percy and Mitchell, with the 2003 world champions Xavier Rohart and Pascal Rambeau of France crossing the finishing line at exactly the same time as Colin Beashel and David Giles of Australia. A 27th place for Canadians Ross Macdonald and Mike Wolfs was enough to see them finish second overall in front of Beashel and Giles.
Percy and Mitchell will now return to Europe where they will compete in Spain at their European Championship at the end of March, before heading on to the world championship in Italy, in April. This event will provide the final test before the 2004 Olympic Games in August.
1, Afonso Domingos/Bernado Santos, POR (7,7,1,2,7,(DNS)) 24 pts
2, Ross Macdonald/Mike Wolfs, CAN (3,13,5,5,11,(27)) 37 pts
3, Colin Beashel/David Giles, AUS (15,10,16,3,(22),3.5/TIE) 47.5 pts
4, Howie Shiebler/Will Stout, USA (26,5,4,8,6,(31)) 49 pts
5, Peter Bromby/Lee White, BER ((18),1,13,17,16,5) 52 pts
6, Iain Percy/Steve Mitchell ((BFD),8,44,1,1,2) 56 pts
37, Andrew Hurst/Ed Peel (54,(OCS),15,39,36,30) 174 pts
49, Michael Hicks/Patrick Hicks (20,69,20,(DSQ),24,OCS) 227 pts