It was a long day for sailors and race officials alike in the 2016 Laser Under-21 World Championships in Kiel. The morning began at 9 am with a 90 minute sail out to the Juliett course. But with wind speeds regularly dropping below five knots, the race committee hoisted the AP flag to delay the start. After nearly an hour, while the breeze near the start line was just strong enough to start racing, readings in the area of the first windward mark were still below the 5 knot threshold. Considering that there was a good forecast for stronger breeze in the afternoon, the race committee sent the sailors back to shore to wait it out.
At two in the afternoon, the AP flag came down and sailors were directed to return to the course area. By the time they arrived, the wind began to build and racing finally got under way. Although the breeze was much stronger than in the morning, it was quite unsettled, with repeated wind shifts from 10 to 20 degrees, sometmes occuring every few minutes and other times lasting for much longer. The race committee was up to the challenge and managed to re-orient both inner and outer course axes on two separate occasions, although this sometimes added to the already long delay from the morning postponement. Sailors who were able to read the wind and time the oscillations were able to make their way to the top of their fleets. Strengh and stamina were also needed to keep the boat in proper trim in the breeze which was often just under 20 knots. With two races being completed after 7 in the evening, it was quite late before the preliminary results were available.
In the women’s fleet, Monika Mikkola [FIN] maintained her status as the top sailor adding two firsts. Marrie Barrue [FRA] moved up quite a bit in the ranks with two seconds and now sits in second place overall after being able to drop her low score from yesterday. Maité Carlier [BEL] has now moved up to third, just one point ahead of Maud Jayet [SUI] and Vasileia Karachaliou [GRE].
In the Men’s fleet, Joel Rodriguez [ESP] and Jonatan Vadnai [HUN] remained in first and second place respectively.