Eric Brezellec (FRA) had an outstanding fourth day at the J/80 World Championship, scoring a scintillating 1-7-1-2, and is now within striking distance of Rayco Tabares (ESP). The defending world champion, from Lanzarote, is still in pole position, but a 4-1-16-18, has cut his championship lead to just seven points, with two races remaining. Tomorrow is the 14th July, French National Day, and Brezellec will be coming out with all guns blazing.
“Today was a very tricky day, with plenty of shifts in the wind and changes in the tide, and we did not get the best results, especially in the last two races, but tomorrow we will be strong and sail better.” promised Rayco Tabares.
Past J/80 world champion, and reigning Spanish champion, Jose Maria Van Der Ploeg (ESP) scored 8-4-11-1 today, to move ahead of Luke Patience (GBR), in the fight for the podium. Simon Moriceau (FRA) slipped up in Race 10, but came back with a third in Race 12, to have a chance of making third for the regatta.
With high pressure and a light southerly gradient wind forecast, there was the possibility that the gradient breeze would be fizzled out by a sea breeze in the afternoon. PRO Stuart Childerley, moved the scheduled start an hour earlier, and made a late call to change the starting area to East Knoll. The two decisions proved to be spot on, providing great races and enough time to get four races sailed on a top class racecourse.
Jon Powell (GBR) had his best day, scoring a 6-2-3-4, to move up three places. Rétho Rémi scored an impressive 11-3-4-5, to move up five places. Chris Body (GBR) came within inches of winning his first J/80 World Championship race, but was just beaten to the line by Brezellec.
“We know we had speed coming into the regatta but that is not enough in this fleet, you have to get off the line well, stay in pressure, and play the shifts. Today we had four races that were both physically and mentally exhausting, so to post the second best results of the day is very satisfying.” commented Jon Powell.
There was also a special prize for two of the youngest competitors at the regatta Luiz Miro. who is 12, and Andres Segura, who is just nine years old. Both of the boys attended a sell out J/80 Class Dinner, held at the Royal Southern Yacht Club. With over 200 sailors enjoying a superb dinner at the club's main dining room.
Racing at the 16th edition of the J/80 World Championship will conclude tomorrow, Friday 14 July, with two final races scheduled from 10:30 BST (11:30 UTC).
For live updates from the 2017 J/80 World Championship, including video and pictures from the race course: http://www.facebook.com/J80Worlds2017 For more information visit: http://www.royal-southern.co.uk