Five sailors will contend the Finn medal race at the Trofeo Princesa Sofia IBEROSTAR on Saturday as the testing of the new event format comes to a close.
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Turkey’s Alican Kaynar, Deniss Karpak of Estonia, Sweden’s Max Salminen, Zsombor Berecz of Hungary and Dutchman Nick Heiner will sail a 30-minute shootout to take home the gold medal.
The journey to the final may have been rather tortuous but the final is straightforward - whoever crosses the finish line first will win the week.
While Argentina’s Facundo Olezza and Brazil’s Jorge Zarif elected not to sail the Semi-Final Qualifier, having already made the Semi-Final, Piotr Kula of Poland did sail and finished third behind Britain's Henry Wetherall and Ben Cornish.
However, after the points were totted up following the Semi-Final Qualifier, there was no change in the overall results.
Both Berecz and Tapio Nirkko of Finland easily doing enough to maintain their points lead over the rest of the fleet and qualify for the Semi-Final along with Olezza, Kula and Zarif.
For the Semi-Final, all points gained so far were dropped with the first three across the finish joining Kaynar and Karpak in Saturday’s Final.
These three were Salminen, Berecz and Heiner. The remaining five boats in the Semi-Final end up placed sixth to tenth.
One of the challenges of testing a new format, for the media at least, is to find new narratives to tell the story of the competition.
The challenge coming out of Palma, is doubly so, since the challenge has also been to explain the purpose as well as the procedure of that new format.
In essence, and increasingly so the further the format is advanced, the story of the races has become secondary to explaining how the format works.
Conversely, if too much time is spent explaining something that is actually supposed to make sailing easier to understand, is it really progress?
One of the finalists, Max Salminen had these thoughts on the new format.
"The mainstream audience want to see their guy race. If you are from Sweden you want to see your Swedish hero race. If he is not in the televised Final the Swedish broadcaster will show something else. So why then cut the fleet to five instead of ten?"
In spite of all the complications leading to this point, Saturday’s Final will be simple to understand, yet still complex to actuate for the sailor.
The five Finn sailors have 30 minutes to make a week’s work come good; 30 minutes to go home with the gold, or with nothing.
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31 March 2017 21:11 GMT