Sunday, July 22, 2012
FINALLY…GORGE-LIKE CONDITIONS FOR LASER SAILORS
The leaders in each fleet have consolidated their positions and look good going into the final on Sunday. Scoring two bullets and two second places again today with a 13 point lead, 21-year old Chris Barnard, from Newport Beach, Calif., finally had a big smile on his face after racing today, very satisfied with his first place but knows there’s still more racing. (You have to catch him after racing to chat to him as he’s just too focused on racing to talk in the mornings, at least that’s what his buddies told me).
“I’m definitely pleased tactically and strategy-wise playing the first beats, staying conservative and making sure I’m in the race. Downwind I’m staying aggressive and using my speed to make my gains, I’m hiking hard and just keep working hard. We’ve still got a few more races left and so I’m just sailing as hard as I can,” Barnard said.
Robert Davis has been plugging away in third over the past few days, chasing Derick Vranizan who in second has an eight point lead over the Canadian. Said Davis, “I’ve had a pretty tough time. It was pretty windy today and there were some pretty decent puffs especially downwind. Chris and Derick are really providing some competition, especially downwind. I’d be happier if I was challenging them more. Chris has a pretty big jump on both of us now - the top two from this regatta get world spots for Oman next year so Derick’s more important to me right now.”
“It’s been good sailing,” Clark (another who is not particularly chatty in the mornings as he's focused on getting out to the course!) said. “The current where we’re sailing brings in a whole different aspect to it because there’s an area where there’s a lot of current over on the Washington side. That makes it very tricky. Plus, you have a very big starting line with the current bringing everyone up so it’s very tough racing. It’s very hard to be consistent - no one’s winning all these races today, that’s for sure. I was just happy to get anywhere near the front because there was so many possible pitfalls at the start - missing the current etc. The first two races today were in quite light air though and the second two were better. It’s nice racing in the fresh water and it’s a beautiful place to sail - I love sailing here.”
It’s extremely tight at the top of the 4.7 fleet, with the top four mixing it up by a just a point. Patrick Shanahan finished the day with 16 points just one point ahead of nemesis Ford McCann, while Daniel Kendrick and Parker Hughes are tied for third with 42 points, making for a big lead for the top two in this fleet.
He’s also been impressed with the high level of competition.
“With the Olympics being settled and the representatives chosen, there is a tendency this regatta this year to see a step down in the level so there are probably three guys who aren’t here who could be in the standard rig fleet who would be at the top and a few women who aren’t here but after that, I think it’s still a good quality fleet. I think the guys sailing in the standard and I am sure some of the women are going to do the next Olympics so it's a good chance to see them in action.”
Top five in the Laser Standard after Day 3:
1. Chris Barnard (sail #194180), Newport Harbor YC, 13 pts
2. Derick Vranizan (sail #196842), Seattle YC, 26 pts
3. Robert Davis, (sail #200610), Kingston YC/RCYC, 34 pts
4. Alexander Heinzemann (sail # 197160) Royal Van YC, 35 pts
5. Eric Bowers (sail #199761), Minnetonka YC, 40 pts
Top five in the Laser 4.7 after Day 3:
1.Patrick Shanahan (sail #199169), St Petersburg YC, 16 pts
2. Ford McCann (sail #199339), TCYC, 17 pts
3. Daniel Kendrick (sail #181884), Houston YC, 42T pts
4. Parker Hughes (sail #182342), TCYC, 42T pts
5. Macey McCann (sail # 175017), TCYC, 46 pts
1. Isabella Bertold (sail #198385), R Van YC, 15 pts
2. Malcom Lamphere (sail # 199796), Lake Geneva YC, 16 pts
3. Al Clark, (sail # 197053), R Van YC, 25 pts
4. Mateo Vargas (sail # 194551), St Petersburg YC/Stanford, 31 pts
5. Clay Broussard (sail # 190464), LYC, 58T pts
6. Andrew Puopolo (sail #198363), Marsh Creek Sailing Club, 58T pts
Racing continues through Sunday. Event website: http://www.laser.org/index.php?option=com_helios&view=ShowEvent&eID=2327
ABOUT COLUMBIA GORGE RACING ASSOCIATION
Based in Cascade Locks, Oregon, CGRA has been promoting small boat sailing events in the Gorge since 1996. Today, CGRA enjoys a reputation for excellence in regatta management and continues to host a growing number of premiere one-design regattas, national, North American, and world championships. Over the last 15 years, we have hosted more than 50 major competitions. As participation grows for sailing in the Columbia River Gorge, the CGRA is expanding its efforts to support the overwhelming interest. Thanks to individual and corporate generosity, we hope to add equipment, staff, volunteers, and other resources. To volunteer or contribute, please visit: http://www.cgra.org/Support_us.htm.
PHOTOS: Paul Nelson/Photoboat.us
Posted by Michelle Slade at 7:39 AM