RS:X Worlds: Big Shifts Mirrored in Big Scores on Day One

Today started light… And shifty. It was the RS:X Women’s yellow fleet who went out to race first here at the ISAF Sailing Championships in Perth Australia.

The big swings in wind direction were mirrored by some big scores. Marina Alabau (ESP) put in a 3rd and an 11th which she can live with but would be happier not to have a potential discard already

Jessica Crisp (AUS) was trapped by a big shift in race 1. There was no way back from the back of the pack. She redeemed herself in the second with a bullet but she’ll be hoping that tomorrow will not be her ground hog day.

It was Charline Picon (FRA) who probably had the best damage limitation  technique with a 7th and a 3rd she now sits in 10th equal Flavia Tartaglini (ITA) – 2,8 – and Li Ling (CHN) – 4,6 –

By the time the blue fleet were called out in the early afternoon, the wind had picked up to 9-11 knots. Marginal planing conditions like this are much more enjoyable but still demanding as there were still big swings in direction.

Lee Korzits (ISR) came out and banged in a bullet followed by a 4th. Bryony Shaw (GBR) is loving it too. Posting a 2 and a 3 she shares top spot tonight. It’s good to see her come straight out of the box with 2 good results. Not her normal style which is to start slowly and come through to take a podium place at the death.

Laura Linares (ITA) fills the 3rd slot tonight having won the 2nd race after a 5th in the first.

There are some big names deep in the peleton tonight. Their dreams of gold here tonight that might have already been shattered. Blanca Manchon (ESP) the 2010 RS:X World Windsurfing Champion and 2010 ISAF Rolex World Sailor of the Year is one. Alessandra Sensini (ITA) is another. Zofia Klepacka (POL) who was heavily fancied to win coming into this big championships, yet another.  There are others…

They say that you cannot win a regatta on day one but you can certainly lose one with a couple of big scores. It’s these big names who will be playing catch up all week, relying on their experience and sheer bloody minded determination to pull through.

It’s going to be a long week of racing for the RS:X women on centre course. The smallest. The closest to the shore. And possibly the most demanding too…

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