Sari Multala of Finland has dominated the class throughout the championship and yesterday clichéd the European title

Scoring seven first places out of ten races The Europe European Champion was decided in light to moderate breezes in Nieuwpoort, Belgium yesterday. In the women’s class it was Sari Multala of Finland who has dominated the class throughout the championship. Scoring seven first places out of ten races, to secure the championship with a fourteen-point lead over second placed Trine Abraharnsen of Denmark.

Going into the final day in 21st position, team GBR sailor Debbie Winstanley needed a good day in order to see her finish inside the top twenty. Winstanley held it together when it counted, scoring an eighth and a seventeenth, to put her in sixteenth place overall, and 12th European.

Team mates Bryony Percy, youngest sister of Olympic Champion Iain Percy, finished 26th overall and 21st European. Kirsty Bonar finished three places behind in 29th place overall.

RYA Olympic Manager Stephen Park commented: “After Shirley Robertsons’ success in 2000, it will always be a struggle to repeat that success for 2004. The current crop of Europe sailors are working hard to ensure that they continue to progress and the 2002 European results show that they are making steady progress towards that goal.” Park continued, “With such tricky conditions and a world class fleet, 12th position is certainly a result Debbie should be proud of.”

Overall Results

Gold fleet

1, Sari Multala, FIN (1,1,(14),1,2,1,1,1,1,(9)) 9 pts

2, Trine Julie Abraharnsen, DEN (2,2,(28),3,1,1,2,6,6,(8)) 23 pts

3, Sarah Macky, NZL ((BFD),3,15,1,1,2,(42),4,4,3) 33 pts

Team GBR

16, Debbie Winstanley ((18),12,4,13,16,9,16,(18),9,17) 96 pts

26, Bryony Percy (4,16,5,16,15,21,(49),14,26,(47)) 117 pts

29, Kirsty Bonar (22,16,4,12,(30),18,29,30,13,(58)) 144 pts

38, Andrea Brewster (28,24,8,10,38,28,19,24,(56),(49)) 179 pts

55, Catherine Stenhouse (32,20,8,32,38,33,(53),31,(49),41) 245 pts

62, Lizzie Vickers ((BFD),29,7,37,26,32,56,29,(55),54) 268 pts