The Perfect Day on a Laser
(Riviera Nayarit, Mexico) If you asked a Laser sailor to draw up the perfect day, a day where a Laser is its absolute most fun to sail, this would be it – sun, warm water, and a steady 12-15 knot breeze. These are the conditions that make upwind sailing a challenge and make downwind sailing an absolute blast. With the wind filling every day like clockwork, so far Riviera Nayarit, Mexico has delivered these perfect conditions in spades, and the sailors here have not been disappointed.
Right on schedule, the sea breeze filled and the day’s first race was started in a 10 knot, southwest wind that quickly built to 15 knots. Although going right still seems to be the most popular tactic for the majority of the sailors, like previous days, protecting the middle of the course again paid off.
According to Mike Matan from USA, “I made it a point in this regatta to not overstand the weather mark and it’s really helped me. I see a lot of people out there who go hard right and then end up reaching into the top mark and giving up distance. I’ve been making it a point to get back to the middle of the course a bit early and it seems to help.” Matan’s sixth and fourth place finishes today keep him in 7th place overall in the tightly contested Masters Division.
Leading the Masters Division is Australian Brett Beyer, who along with American Ernesto Rodrigues each had a first and second place finish today to remain at the top of the overall standings.
In the Grand Masters Division, Gavin Dagley of Australia kept things interesting by posting a 7th place finish in the day’s first race, putting him in a virtual tie with Chilean, Cristian Herman. But in the next race, Dagley vindicated himself with another bullet to open up a 5-point lead over Herman going into the final day of the regatta. The real battle in the Grand Masters Division looks to be for third place, with three sailors within 5 point of each other.
American, Doug Peckover, is certainly happy after his first race in the Great Grand Masters Division where he became the only sailor in the fleet to cross the finish line in front of defending champion Mark Bethwaite from Australia. Bethwaite’s second place finish becomes his discard, allowing him to keep a perfect string of first place finishes on his score line. Peckover remains in second place overall ahead of Australian, James Temple.
Tomorrow if the final day of the championship, and once again the forecast is for more, perfect Laser sailing conditions.
Top-Three Standings by Division:
Apprentice Masters Division:
1) Pablo Rabago MEX 8pts
2) Guilherme Roth BRA 14pts
3) Alejandro Rabago MEX 23pts
1) Brett Beyer AUS 9pts
2) Ernesto Rodriguez USA 22pts
3) Andrew Dellabarca NZL 28pts
Grand Masters Division:
1) Gavin Dagley AUS 20pts
2) Cristian Herman CHI 25pts
3) Allan Clark CAN 37pts
Great Grand Masters Division:
1) Mark Bethwaite AUS 8pts
2) Doug Peckover USA 17pts
3) James Temple AUS 26pts
For more information:
Laser Class Website – http://www.laserinternational.org
First held in 1980, the Laser Masters World Championship is organized annually for sailors age 35 and over. Sailors compete in various divisions based on their ages: Apprentice Masters – age 35 to 44, Masters – age 45 to 54, Grand Masters – age 55 to 64, and Great Grand Masters – age 65 and over. Unlike previous years, this year’s event was sailed on two separate weeks, one for Laser Radial sailors and one for Laser Standard sailors.