A white-out and another six-hour day on the Black Sea meant that those responsible for racing at the ILCA European Championships in Varna, Bulgaria, could only run one race for the laser and radial classes overnight.
Both fleets spent hours on the water in rain-driven shifts, but after this lonely race, race management had to abandon the day after a final strong storm hit the track.
“Basically we were a bit white and couldn’t see anymore,” said coach Ryan Palk. âThe visibility went down immediately. In the end it wasn’t safe for the race management to keep us out there, so they had to send us in. “
Zac Littlewood and Mara Stransky recovered from their Black Flag sentences yesterday and finished 4th in the laser and radial classes.
“There are some unwanted letters on the scorecard, but that’s sailing,” said Stransky. “But I’m enjoying the chance to practice bouncing now.”
The 22-year-old Olympian is currently in 17th place. âSo far the week has been quite an up and down with some fun sailing,â Stransky continued. “The conditions were pretty windy and very changeable with decent big sloping waves.”
After an 18-month absence from international regattas due to travel restrictions, Australian sailors are reminded of the unpredictability of fleet races.
This will test both your patience and your fitness. From the carriage, Palk has already observed “some tired-looking faces in the fleet”.
As there is only one race in the rain today, it will probably be a very big day and a big physical test for the guys tomorrow after a very long and cold week, âsaid Palk.
Sydney-based laser sailor Finn Alexander is pleased with the way he copes with the long and challenging days on the water.
“It’s been a very difficult week so far, but I’m starting to be more consistent in my decision-making,” said Alexander. “Today was the first day of the gold fleet race, so it was good to get a solid keeper under your belt.”
There are still two days of racing left. Since only six races have been completed for the Laser men and seven for the Radial fleet, the race management is under pressure to start the three races scheduled for tomorrow.
See the full results here: https://eurilca.org/2021-senior-europeans-results/
Entries for the Australian Sailing Team (AST) and the Australian Sailing Squad (ASS):
Laser (115 boats)
7. Luke Elliott (AST) – 2, 6, 1, 8, 2, (23)
10. Zac Littlewood (ASS) – 8, 14, 6, (BFD), 4
15. Finn Alexander (ASS) – 17, 19, 5, (31), 4, 15
36. Ethan McAullay (ASS) – (25), 6, 10, 17, 22, 49
Laser Radial (78 boats)
17. Mara Stransky (AST) – 4, 21, 41, 26, (BFD), 13, 4
18. Elyse Ainsworth (ASS) – (38), 28. 4, 18, 7, 26, 26
23. Zoe Thomson (ASS) – 30, 25, (35), 10, 11, 46, 23
29. Casey Imeneo (ASS) – (40), 33, 15, 24, 37, 28, 17
Words: Lisa Darmani