SAIL Olympics Update: Light Air and Tough Sailing - Sail Magazine

SAIL Olympics Update: Light Air and Tough Sailing

Author:
Publish date:
rio16_df_08_03_1030_B

The U.S. sailing team knew going into the 2016 Olympics that the winds on Rio’s Guanabara Bay are often quite light. The team also knew it was going to have to battle for every place in every class in every race if it was to bring home any medals. And on Day 2 of the regatta, a challenging one with fluky breezes across both courses, it was more evident than ever that there will be few if any gimmes during the next week and a half of sailing.

As evidence of how tough it was, current world champion Giles Scott of Great Britain—widely acknowledged as the odds-on favorite to get a gold—finished in an almost shocking 17th place in the very first race for the Finn class. Basically, he fell back into the second row as a result of a poor start and was never able to get back into the game after that. A mere 6 knots of breeze on the Pao de Acucar course, building to 9 knots toward the finish didn’t help.

In the second race of the day (sailed in 8 knots of wind out of the southwest: fairly typically for Guanabara Bay this time of year) Scott finished a more characteristic third. Still, it’s safe to say, he’ll be taking nothing for granted after such a slow start.

Leading the class after the first two races is Argentina’s Facundo Oleza, who won the first race and took 9th in the second—yet more evidence for how tough the racing was. U.S. Finn sailor Caleb Paine finished in 7th and 10th and is currently in seventh overall, not a bad start, although he’s clearly got some catching up to do.

Farther to the north, conditions were also both challenging and light for the Laser and Laser Radial classes, with winds ranging from 14 knots to just 3 knots at times. For Charlie Buckingham it was largely a reprise of the opening day, as he finished in 10th and 23rd, making his overall record: 20, 7, 10 and 23.

Meanwhile, for Laser Radial sailor Paige Railey, after coming back from a slow start to finish 2nd in yesterday’s Race 2 she finished a disappointing 10th and 21st in today’s two races, which took place in about 10 knots of breeze out of the south building to 12.

Finally, on the Escola Naval course straddling the bay’s main channel, Olympic rookies Marion Lepert and Pedro Pascual in the women’s and men’s RS:X classes continued to get an education in what it means to compete at the brutally competitive Olympic level: with Pascual taking 37th in the fourth race of the series and failing to finish in Race 5; and Lepert, who finished 3rd in yesterday’s second race, finishing 13, 22 and 23.

August 2016

Related

9781472947666

Book Review: The Atlantic Crossing Guide

Jane Russell & the RCC Pilotage FoundationIf you have a yen for sailing across the Pond to explore the delights of Northern Europe or the Mediterranean, you’d best do some homework first. There’s no better primer than this weighty tome, now in its 7th edition. It’s crammed with ...read more

shutterstock_63705382

Raytech Gelbox Line

Well GelledEvery so often you run across a product you never knew you needed, and then you wonder why it took so long for someone to come up with it. Thus it is with the Gelbox line from Raytech. These reuseable plastic boxes for low-voltage connectors are filled with gel, so ...read more

shutterstock_295810247

Cruising: Nova Scotia’s Bras d’Or Lake

I have rarely had a cruise that wasn’t different from my expectations, and my Nova Scotia travels have borne that out. For my friend and shipmate, Steve White, and me, our 2017 trip to Cape Breton Island and the Bras d’Or Lake on One Timer, my Sabre 362, was a much anticipated ...read more

ElanGT5-a

Boat Review: Elan GT5

Aboard many modern yachts, it can be hard to remember exactly what boat you’re on until your eye happens to light upon a logo. However, this is most definitely not the case with the Elan GT5, a performance cruiser with a look all its own and style to burn.Design & ...read more

01-Lead-P1060210

Handheld VHF Radios

For many sailors, cell phones have become their primary means of both ship-to-shore and ship-to-ship communication. Even the Coast Guard will often ask for a cell number after it receives a distress call. None of this, however, makes a VHF radio any less important—and this goes ...read more

Seascape24

Boat Review: Seascape 24

Since its inception in 2008, Slovenian builder Seascape, founded by a pair of Mini Transat sailors, has focused solely on creating boats that are both simple and loads of fun to sail. With their 18-footer and then a 27-footer they succeeded in putting out a pair of trailerable ...read more

01-Trash-Tiki_in-partnership-with-Subtch-Sports_starting

The Adventurers Aboard Trash-Tiki

If you were in Gotland, a popular island vacation destination off the coast of Sweden, on the morning of July 3, your holiday might have been interrupted by a startling sight: a tiny island of trash approaching shore with people aboard. It was, in fact, a sailboat made from ...read more

atlantic-cup-trailer

2018 Atlantic Cup Video Mini-Series

Atlantic Cup 2018: TrailerThis past spring, SAIL magazine was on-hand to document the 2018 Atlantic Cup, a two-week-long Class 40 regatta spanning the U.S. East Coast and one of the toughest events in all of North America. The preview above will give you a taste of the four-video ...read more