49er Worlds – day 3. Olympic Qualification Hopes Dashed

Graeme Willcox & Andrew Tarboton
Graeme Willcox & Andrew Tarboton

Graeme Willcox reports

We had a difficult day yesterday. The wind was further south and coming over the city. This meant it was quite patchy and switchy.

The first race started in 12-15 knots, we had a good start and were making our way nicely to the top. We got round in an ok position and gybe set for the new wind on the right hand side. As we got to the leeward gate the wind was down to 5 knots and lumpy. Going for the right hand mark and heading left the wind started to swing. The guys inside of us started lifting. We rounded the weather mark last place. The wind then died more and we picked up a good gust and sailed right back into the pack and finished in the 20’s.

The rest of the day was a game of snakes and ladders where it didn’t quite go our way.

Today sees us in the silver fleet. After yesterday’s conditions there are some big names who didn’t make the gold fleet cut, so we still have some good racing ahead.

This split has confirmed what I had said the other day – we won’t qualify for Rio 2016 here. There are 7 countries who are vying for the 3 slots. There could be an additional 2 slots available once continental qualification countries don’t claim their slots. There are no more teams competing for the Oceana slot and most likely the African slot (as SASCOC won’t claim the African slot).

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