Australia’s Laser team has made a strong start to the Palma regatta, the 49th Trofeo Princesa Sofia in Spain, with Finn Alexander taking first place in one of the three groups contesting the mammoth 183-boat fleet and two other Aussies achieving top 15 rankings.
Variable but mostly light winds allowed for only one race in the Laser Standard and Radial classes and former youth world champion Alexander finished first in red group to head the list. Rio Olympic gold medallist Tom Burton ended up fourth with a second in blue group and fellow Australian Sailing Team representative, world No.4 Matt Wearn holds 13th after a fifth in red group.
Other national team Laser sailors Luke Elliott (49th) and Mitch Kennedy (67th) are in the top half and Dan Self is 139th.
Mat Belcher and Will Ryan are back in action on the world stage. PHOTO Tomas Moya
Two races were staged in the 470 classes with world champions Mat Belcher and Will Ryan grabbing a two and 13 to settle into ninth in the 79-boat men’s fleet, ahead of Chris Charlwood and Josh Dawson, who are 46th, and Nia Jerwood and Monique de Vries ending up 26th in the 48-boat women’s fleet.
Nia Jerwood (obscured) and Monique de Vries are 26th. PHOTO Tomas Moya
After coming a discarded 19th in the opening race in the 49er class, Kurt Hansen and Harry Morton finished a powerful third and fourth in the next two contests to slide into 12th spot in the 91-boat fleet. Lachy Gilmour and Ryan Donaldson are 30th, while Australian champions David Gilmour and Joel Turner scored a 10, 4 and discarded 11th to end up 24th and 13 points behind the leaders.
In the 54-boat 49erFX fleet, Natasha Bryant and Annie Wilmot sit 20th after two top-10 finishes among the three races and Amelia Stabback and Ella Clark are 32nd.
Two races were held in the Finn class, where Jake Lilley is the best placed Australian in 16th, Oli Tweddell is 30th, Jock Calvert 47th and Lewis Brake 60th in the 73-boat fleet.
Laser Radial sailor Paige Caldecoat is 85th of 113 competitors and Nacra 17 pair Tayla Rietman and Lachie White are 44th after three races.
Mat Belcher/Will Ryan - 2,13 - 9th
Chris Charlwood/Josh Dawson - 12, 30 - 46th
Nia Jerwood/Monique de Vries - 17, 8 - 26th
Kurt Hansen/Harry Morton - (19), 3, 4 - 12th
David Gilmour/Joel Turner - 10, 4, (11) - 24th
Lachy Gilmour/Ryan Donaldson - 2, 15, (17) - 30th
Natasha Bryant/Annie Wilmot - (22), 10, 6 - 20th
Amelia Stabback/Ella Clark - (18), 14, 11 - 32nd
Jake Lilley - 15, 25 - 16th
Oli Tweddell - 26, 39 - 30th
Jock Calvert - 50, 35 - 47th
Lewis Brake - 65, 49 - 60th
Finn Alexander - 1 - 1st
Tom Burton - 2 - 4th
Matt Wearn - 5 - 13th
Luke Elliott - 17 - 49th
Mitch Kennedy - 23 - 67th
Daniel Self - 47 - 139th
Paige Caldecoat - 43 - 85th
Tayla Rietman/Lachie White - 19, 21, (22) - 44th
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