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Sailing: Sonar crew in pole position after day four in Hyeres
A change in conditions made for a long day and tricky racing at the French World Cup regatta yesterday, but the Paralympic Sonar trio of John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas (pictured) are in pole position with two days of the event left to run.
With conditions becoming too windy on Tuesday, Hyeres instead served up a light wind start to this fourth day of competition, with delays to scheduled start times while the breeze built.
Robertson, Stodel and Thomas moved up two spots from their overnight position of third, thanks to three consistent races of 2,3,5. They now have a narrow two-point cushion at the top of the leaderboard over the Norwegian crew, who picked up two race wins.
Elsewhere, Helena Lucas made ground on Dutchman Thierry Schmitter to advance to second in the 2,4mR Paralympic class, but is poised on equal points with Schmitter in third.
In the SKUD fleet, Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell are two points behind the Australian team of Dan Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch, who resumed the lead with two race wins today.
And Alison Young will swap her yellow leader’s bib for a blue one today – fluky wind conditions on the Laser Radial course proved a tough test for all, with Young picking up two mid-teen results to see her drop to second, but just one point behind the Netherlands’ first-placed Marit Bouwmeester.
Charlotte Dobson also endured a tricky day, but remains in the top ten medal race positions in ninth overall.
Lucy Macgregor, Annie Lush and Kate Macgregor still have seven round robin bouts to go to complete their opening series in the women’s match racing event.
They won three of their four matches on Wednesday, beating Julie Bossard (FRA) and Rita Goncalves (POR), before losing narrowly to Silja Lehtinen but ending a long day with a win over Silvia Roca (ESP).
And the Skandia Team GBR’s development squad sailors made gains in the RS:X Women’s and Laser fleets, with Izzy Hamilton improving one place to 13th overall, and Alex Mills Barton in 16th in the Laser event.
More info: www.rya.org.uk/skandiateamgbr
Lizzie Flint, Sportsister
The Women’s Sports Magazine