Postma takes lead at ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres

A change in wind wrought many changes on the Finn class on day three at the ISAF Sailing World Cup Hyeres. Pieter-Jan Postma (NED) moved into a narrow lead over Giles Scott (GBR) while former leader Vasilij Zbogar (SLO) drops to third. Just one point separates the top three as in the much needed, much increased wind, race wins went to Jonathan Lobert (FRA) and Ed Wright (GBR).

Finn HyeresClick image for a larger image

With forecasts of 15-20 knots, the fleet started its final series in gold and silver fleets. The stronger wind brought some new faces to the front and the light wind experts suffered, but it was a near perfect day for sailing

The first race went to Jonathan Lobert (FRA) from Pieter-Jan Postma and Andrew Mills (GBR). Then Ed Wright won the next race, his second race of the week with Lobert rounding out the best performance of the day in second and the ever consistent Mills in third again.

Wright said, “Another race win in completely different conditions. Today was fabulous sailing in about 14-16 knots, but it seemed stronger. I think I need to man up! There were awesome waves downwind. It was a pleasure to sail today.”

“I sailed the first upwind reasonably well rounding third. Then I had a solid downwind, leading at the bottom and held it to the finish. I saw some really great sailing technique from the others today on the downwind. The downwind game has moved forward and I need to work on this over the coming months.”

Mills made an important observation, “This week could prove the best example of the problems with the scoring system. Those that sailed consistently in the light get hardly any benefit from the first two days and the final results will probably reflect a heavy breeze regatta not the mixed event it has been.”

In the silver fleet Lauri Vainsalu (EST) had the best of the day with a 1, 2, but still sits in eighth place. London 2012 Olympian Oleksiy Borysov (UKR) leads the fleet after a 2, 3 in today's fresh winds.

Vainsalu commented, "But for sure it's a little disappointing for me to be in a silver fleet but I'm trying to take the max out of it and learn as much as I can. The new scoring system is complicated. As far as I understand it the goal is to make it more interesting and dramatic for spectators but at the same time it should be very easy to understand."

"At the moment it's everything else but easy to understand. For sure it has positive points as well like making sailing closer but at the same time it's weird, like in Palma it was possible to discard all the first three days after first day of finals.”

Considering we are seven races into a 11 race series the points are incredibly tight. The sailors have effectively started again after taking their overall position after the first five races as a non-discardable first race in the finals series. Only 15 points now separate the top 10. A 2, 7 from Postma puts him in the lead after three days, but it's so close anything can happen.

There are two more days of gold and silver fleet racing before the top 10 go into Saturday’s two medal races.

Finn - Results after seven races
1. NED 842 Pieter Jan POSTMA 5.00
2. GBR 41 Giles SCOTT 6.00
3. SLO 573 Vasilij ZBOGAR 6.00
4. NZL 24 Josh JUNIOR 9.00
5. GBR 11 Edward WRIGHT 10.00
6. GBR 85 Andrew MILLS 10.00
7. NZL 16 Andrew MURDOCH 12.00
8. FRA 112 Jonathan LOBERT 13.00
9. AUS 261 Tweddell OLIVER 19.00
10. FIN 218 Tapio NIRKKO 20.00

Full results: http://sof.ffvoile.net/results/finn.htm

Robert Deaves
25 April 2013 6:19 GMT


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