Today was another fine day for sailing on Gdańsk bay as sailors completed another two races on their way to the conclusion of the 2018 Laser 4.7 Youth World Championships at Gdynia, Poland.
The wind was a bit up and down, with about 8 or 9 knots on the low end and up to 14 or 15 at the high end, but for the most part, you could expect about 11 knots with oscillations centered around 345 degrees.
Most starts were quite orderly, with few sailors over the line and only a small number of general recalls. Different sailors had quite different ideas about what was working and what wasn’t. Chris Purcell (USA) said, “I felt that boat speed was critical. I was looking to establish good speed from the start and keep it up.” It wasn’t always easy, but he managed to finish in roughly the top quarter of the two bronze fleet races and is now 10th in that group. “I had come here thinking I could make it into the Silver fleet, but that didn’t happen.” So now he seems focused on making it up near the top of Bronze.
Mauro Pretto Vila from Peru suggested that it was decision making that was critical, that is making the RIGHT decisions. “I had some good starts but just seemed to make one bad decision after another. When I went right, the wind went left.” Unable to get in phase with the wind shifts, Mauro struggled on the day, but is still having a good week as he sits at 20th overall in the Gold fleet. He has had some good races, with three top ten finishes including one bullet, and with a strong day tomorrow and a little bit of luck, could move up near the top 10.
Fellow Peruvian sailor Stefano Viale also had some good starts, but even better finishes. With a 4th and a 16th today, he has moved up to 2nd overall. It isn’t always about winning, but about avoiding bad races. With his worst finish at 16, Stefano Viale has been solidly near the front in every single race.
Right now, the only sailor who is in control of their destiny is Australia’s Michael Compton, who like Stefano Viale has been consistently good. Very good. If sailors manage to complete two races on the final day, a combined score of 17 will guarantee the World Champion title for Compton. So far, his worst finish is 16th. That said, any think can happen.
Wonn Kye Lee (Singapore) wasn’t able to avoid having a bad race today. “In the first race, I had a bad start and couldn’t ever recover. I ended up on the wrong side from where I wanted to be and I wasn’t able to get back to the other side.” With a DSQ from the previous day that is going to be discarded, having a bad race dropped him from 1st overall to 7th. “Tomorrow, I just need to sail my own race. I can’t control what other sailors are doing.”
In the girls division, Leyla Helgasarah Tolstika from Latvia is a young sailor who is here trying to gain valuable experience. “The starts in such a big fleet have been quite challenging but I have been getting better. And I really like the shifting winds, because it provides an opportunity to make gains and move up a bit in the fleet when I make good decisions. And the wind speed has been nice, and not too strong! Overall I am having a good time at the World Championships.”
Another young sailor competing at the event is Singapore’s Simone Chen who is currently 3rd overall. “Today was good and bad.” She had her lowest finish of the regatta in the first race of the day. And in the final race, she was flagged by the jury for a rule 42 violation. “It seems like the Judges are picking on me! Like I am being watched all the time.” Of course, if you are sailing near the front of the fleet, you might receive some additional attention from officials. “I was in 2nd place at the time, but there was a big gap and taking my turning penalty only dropped me back two places.” Simone Chen is tied in points with Eline Verstraelen (Belgium) who is in 4t places. She had to retire in the second race, but has otherwise been very consistently good. Marilena Makri won the final race of the day in Gold fleet and continues to hold on to 5th place.
Although anything can happen on the final day, there are two sailors who have separated themselves a little bit from the rest of the fleet, both from Italy: Chiara Benini Floriani and Giorgia Cingolani. An 18 point gap after day 4 has now closed to a 5 point gap after today’s races. Gorgia had the best combined performance today in the girls Gold fleet with a third and a fifth. “In the first race, the breeze was oscillating over about 20 minutes from right to left and I went over to the right side at a good time and was able to become lifted above the fleet going upwind. In the second race, I could see how things were going for the fleet in front of us and knew I wanted to get over to the right side. I had to duck so many boats to get over there on port tack, but it paid off in the end.”
Top 5 Provisional Results after Day 5
Laser 4.7 Youth Girls
1. Chiara Benini Floriani, Italy (31)
2. Giorgia Cingolani, Italy (36)
3. Simone Chen, Singapore (56)
4. Eline Verstraelen Belgium (56)
5. Marilena Makri, Cyprus (68)
Laser 4.7 Youth Boys
1. Michael Compton, Australia (43)
2. Stefano Viale, Peru (59)
3. Daniel Hung, Singapore (62)
4. Doruk Demircan, Turkey (72)
5. James Foster, United Kingdom (80)
4.7 Youth World Championships – Boys Division GOLD Fleet Provisional Results
4.7 Youth World Championships – Boys Division SILVER Fleet Provisional Results
4.7 Youth World Championships – Boys Division BRONZE Fleet Provisional Results
4.7 Youth World Championships – Boys Division EMERALD Fleet Provisional Results