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European Champs - Day 4

2011 European Optimist Championships

Friday 8 July – Fourth Days Racing

Hi everyone – the second to last update from Tavira (no update likely to be available from the last night party)

At the risk of sounding repetitive, yet another up and down day from the Kiwi team in Tavira.

Nick and Cole both scored some strong results with Nick landing a second place in race 10 and Cole scoring a third place in race 11.

This is, incidentally, the highest individual race result ever from a New Zealand team at the European Optimist Championships regatta with the previous best Kiwi boys placing being a 4th. (Nick’s placing was actually a 3rd across the line but later improved to a second due the Singaporean sailor ahead of him being black flagged. Nick’s second was in part thanks to a large number of sailors being black flagged in the previous start reducing the size of the fleet significantly and thus making the start line a click looser).

In good young EJ fashion however, he managed to balance the second placing with a robust 52nd in race 11 to leave him lying 28th overall out of the total fleet of 130 boats.

Cole scored a 28th in race 11 to add to his third place in race 11 which jump shifted him up the fleet by some 20 places to 61st overall overnight.

Zak had had a much stronger day with solid placings of 23rd and 27th to leave him lying 74th overall. Zak really seemed to be sailing much stronger today but the results and overall position do not accurately reflect his improvement in the later stages of this regatta. His prowess in swapping t shirts and lifejackets after the racing leaves none of us in doubt as to his skill around the boatyard though…

Lola has had a tough day with placings of 22 and 26th. Ordinarily these would be keeper results but due to several sailor behind her overnight having larger ‘drops’ she fell back to 20th overall. Still, with a good result in the penultimate race tomorrow she can still recover the lost ground and finish up with a very strong overall result. We need also to remember that this is Lola’s first international regatta and her results to date have been outstanding. Keep it going for 1 more day Lola!

The regatta concludes tomorrow with one final race. Nick and Lola are both capable of a top placing overall depending on the final days result.

Come what may, the regatta has achieved what it is designed to do for the Kiwi sailors and that is to act as a grooming ground for the larger worlds stage that awaits these young people. No matter where the kiwi sailors finish in this regatta, the experience that they have gained in this regatta both on and off the water will stand them in great stead for forthcoming larger events. The next international regatta will always be less daunting because of this one that they have nearly finished.

More to come from Tavira tomorrow after the last race.

Regards

Lola, Zak, Cole and Nick.

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