by Agustin Arguelles 9 Oct 05:28 UTC 6-13 October 2020 2020 Laser Senior Europeans in Gdansk, Poland day 1 © Thom Touw / www.thomtouw.com
Who has missed big fleet racing? After this hectic times we’re finally back on the water enjoying top sailing in Gdansk, Poland, where the 2020 Laser Senior European Championships & Open European Trophy are being held.
The day started with a 30 minutes postponement for the Laser Standard to better free the ramp for all the Radials to launch first.
Flat water and a shifty medium breeze blowing from the land marked the sailing conditions on this first day of competition. The first bunch of races were held with around 10 knots from the South West, while the wind raised to 15 knots for the second ones.
Race Day 1 – Laser Standard
The reigning 2019 European champion Lorenzo Chiavarini GBR (1-1) continued his supremacy from the last year in Porto and started the championship with a perfect score, leading the fleet with 2 points. Filip Jurisic CRO (1-4) is second with 5. Italians Marco Gallo ITA (6-2) and Nicolo Villa ITA (6-3) are third and fourth respectively.
“Strategy-wise, it was hard day on the water. Definitely I can be happy with my sailing for today. I managed to stay in good rhythm on both races”, said Filip Jurisic from Croatia.
“I’m happy about today’s races because there were tricky conditions. I felt very fast downwind and confident about my tactical choices. Looking forward to race again tomorrow!”, said Marco Gallo from Italy.
The British squad positioned two other sailors amongst the top 10, with Elliot Hanson (3-8) in fifth and Michael Beckett (4-15) sixth.
The reigning 2020 World champion Philipp Buhl GER (22-6) is 18th among 126 competitors.
Race Day 1 – Laser Radial Women
It was a tight start in the Women’s championship, with three sailors sharing the top position on 5 points: Anne Marie Rindom DEN (1-4), Line Flem Host NOR (2-3) and Marit Bouwmeester NED (2-3). Mirthe Akkerman NED (6-1) is also close with 7 points and ranked fourth overall. Fifth European place and sixth overall sees Emma Plasschaert BEL (7-5).
“It was one of those days where you have to look out for the pressure and shifts, but still manage to not take too big risks. I finished 1st and 4th and I’m very happy with how it went. I’m coming back after a long time with an injury and just enjoying racing again!”, said Anne Marie Rindom from Denmark.
It was a great start for Marilena Makri CYP (4-9) at her first Senior Europeans! The Cypriat sailor is ranked sixth European and 7th overall among the 107 competitors.
“It was great! Very tight racing as expected. Every mistake cost a lot! Super excited for tomorrow!”, said Marilena Makri from Cyprus.
Silvia Zennaro ITA, Annalise Murphy IRL, Ecem Guzel TUR and Pia Kuhlmann GER complete the European provisional top 10. Sarah Douglas from Canada is the only non-European sailor among the top competitors, holding fifth place in the rankings.
Race Day 1 – Laser Radial Men
The Radial Men’s championship is led by local sailor Filip Ciszkiewicz POL (6-1) on 7 points, closely followed by Irish Tom Higgins IRL (4-4) and Dutch Paul Hameeteman NED (7-3).
“Quite a hard day. Offshore winds made the racing really tricky. I wasn’t too happy with the way I was sailing today, but 5 more days to improve and get better in these conditions. I wasn’t really planning on coming here, but after the U19 Europeans in Hyeres got cancelled last week I still managed to get here to compete. Happy to be racing a big event this year to close of the season!”, said Paul Hameeteman from The Netherlands.
In fourth place is Otto Dahlberg FIN (2-10), sharing 12 points with the Masters sailor Adonis Bougiouris GRE (3-9). 30 sailors are participating in this fleet.
Sailing will continue Friday with two scheduled races. The day will start with Coaches/Team Leaders meeting at 09:00. First warning signal for the Standards will be at 11:00 / 11:45 for the Radials.
Full results from the regatta can be found here.