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Offshore Sailing Worlds - We have a Winner

Karl Kwok's Pac 52 Beau Geste (HKG) is the new Class A Offshore World Champion.

Composed of mostly Kiwis with a mix of other nationalities led by project manager Gavin Brady, the new World Champions are Jim Baxter, Nick Blackman, David Brooke, Chris Cowen, Matt Humphries, Matt Kelway, Patrick Kong, David Lenz, Spencer Loxton, Rob Salthouse, Dave Swete and Jim Williamson.

It seems that even though they do not have to sail Friday since their discarded worse score is only the 1.5 points they shared with Outsider today being tied in the first race, they will anyway just to have more time on the boat.

With a 13-point lead in a nine-boat class going into the final race, Outsider has a similar lock on the Silver medal position.

So the real fight is for Bronze, with the Rotterdam Offshore Sailing Team's Ker 46 Van Uden (NED) led by skipper Gerd-Jan Poortman having a good day on scores of 3 and 3.5.

While closest rival Hitchhiker (NED), the Carkeek 40 owned by Bas de Voogd, sailed their discard in the first race putting them six points back in the standings.

In Class B, Claus Landmark's Landmark 43 Santa (NOR) has led the series from the start and has a tiny 1.0 margin of victory assured over her sistership, Torkjel Valland's White Shadow (NOR).

White Shadow had a perfect day with two race wins, doing what they can to close the gap with Santa to bring the gold medal decision into a showdown in Friday's final race of the series.

In Class C, two high scores Thursday pushed Patrik Forsgren's modified First 36.7 Pro4U (SWE) them back to within reach of the reigning IRC European champion, Gideon Messink's J/112E J Lance (FRA), only 8 points away.

Kai Mares's Italia 9.98 Immac Fram is still holding their own in the Bronze medal position, with a 13-point margin over Michael Mollmann's X-37 Hansen (DEN), but no lead is safe in this highly-competitive class.

One more inshore race is scheduled Friday.

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