Day three of the Star Sailors League Finals saw true Bahamas conditions set in for the first time with 12-18 knots winds from northeast-east allowing the race committee to move the course out of Montagu Bay where there were bigger waves with limited protection from the full force of the Atlantic.
Despite being dominated by Olympic Finn sailors, the day ended with a new leader in Mark Mendelblatt and crew Brian Fatih, who now lead Robert Scheidt and Henry Boening by a mere point, going into the last day of the Qualifiers.
Fatih, who has sailed with Mendelblatt since they teamed up for London 2012, observed: “We’re fortunate to be in this position: Robert is an amazing sailor, the benchmark so if you can stay up with him, you’re happy.” However following their 15-4-4 score today, gaining the lead was a surprise. “It was a struggle – we didn’t feel great on the boat. We weren’t terrible, it just wasn’t as smooth as normal.” However while today’s first race became their discard, Scheidt and Boening had to count their 12th in race two.
Top 10 after 6 races
1 Mark Mendelblatt (USA Brian Fatih (USA) 22
2 Robert Scheidt (BRA) Henry Boening (BRA) 23
3 Jorge Zarif (BRA) Pedro Trouche (BRA) 31
4 Diego Negri (ITA) Diego Negri (ITA) 32
5 Eivind Melleby (NOR) Joshua Revkin (USA) 39
6 Mateusz Kusznierewicz (POL) Dominik Zycki (POL) 48
7 Lars Grael (BRA) Samuel Gonçalves (BRA) 51
8 Xavier Rohart (FRA) Pierre-Alexis Ponsot (FRA) 54
9 Augie Diaz (USA) Bruno Prada (BRA) 54
10 Zsombor Berecz (HUN) Michael Meier (CZE) 56
Tomorrow is the final day of Qualifiers at the Star Sailors League Finals and the target is to finish within the top 10 to progress through to Saturday’s Quarter Final. At present any of the top 22 teams could still make the cut.
The winner of the Qualifiers fast tracks directly to the Final Race, while second place heads directly to the Semi Final. Those that finish the Qualifiers in third to tenth places, get to race in the Quarter Finals. The top five Quarter Finallists progress through to the Semi Final. The top three from the Semi Finals join the winner of the Qualifiers in the Finals.
Winner of the Star Sailors League Finals receives US$ 40,000 from a prize pot of US$ 200,000.
You can watch all the Day 4 action live right here. Racing is scheduled to begin at 1030 EST/1530 UTC/1630 CEST with live coverage beginning around 30 minutes before the first race warning signal.