Lobert and Pedersen though to Final at Finn Europeans
France’s Jonathan Lobert, the 2012 London bronze medalist, has taken the lead at the top of the Finn European Championship in Marseille, France after a near perfect performance on the fifth day. Anders Pedersen of Norway, remains in second despite his worst day on the water so far, while Hungary’s Zsombor Berecz moves up to third.
Both Lobert and Pedersen have already qualified for the Final on Saturday – the top three from the Opening Series progress straight to the Final. One more place in the Final will be decided in Saturday’s final Opening Series race, while two more will come from the Semi-Final, which will be a race off between the next seven boats in the Opening Series.
Both the Semi-Final and Final are first across the line formats, with all the points across the previous six days wiped out for the final two short races.
Highlights from Day 4 of the Finn Europeans
Friday was another very tough day in the would-be Olympic venue with four races again sailed in easterly winds varying from 10 to 20 knots, though like Wednesday, only three races were valid, after the third race was abandoned in the closing stages due to a drifting mark.
Deniss Karpak, of Estonia, was the fastest to the top mark in Race 7, leading up the middle but he just let Alican Kaynar slip inside him at the top mark. Max Salminen of Sweden rounded third. There was no change at the gate but several changes at the second top mark. Lobert was up to third at second top mark after a strong left hand side came in, and together with Nicholas Heiner, from the Netherlands, sailed a fast run to pass ahead and they rounded the final mark overlapped. But Lobert had the inside track and won his first race from Henier and Karpak.
Race 8 started in much the same conditions with the wind rapidly building up the course and Oscar was raised at the top for free pumping. Milan Vujanisovic, from Croatia, led round from Krzysztof Stromski of Poland and Oisin Mcclelland or Ireland. Vujanisovic led through the gate but Facundo Olezza of Argentina, was close behind and took the lead on the second upwind. There was a big wind gradient again on the run with much less wind at the bottom of the course, but on the final downwind Berecz came through at the last mark to take the win from Olezza and Max Kohlhoff of Germany.
Ed Wright, GBR
The final race of the day, Race 9 in the Opening Series, was sailed in two parts in a still increasing wind. The first attempt was led by Lobert and Ed Wright of Great Britain but despite a great race, the Race Committee abandoned it on the final leg because the spreader mark at the top had drifted out of position and they were getting incorrect information fed down the course. The sailors were not happy at all, but the race was restarted soon after and again Lobert was in front, to lead at every mark and take his second (or third) win of the day. Thursday’s star performer, Piotr Kula of Poland crossed second after a great race, with Pedersen third.
Many sailors suffered through the race abandonment, including Wright, Heiner and Peter McCoy of Great Britain who had sailed a great race in third place, only to see it evaporate within sight of the finish line. There were five requests for redress against the Race Committee for the abandoned race, all of which were later dismissed.
Zsombor Berecz, HUN
Last year’s bronze medalist, Vujasinovic is up to fifth. He said, “We had four races again out of three scheduled so it’s a bit frustrating I suppose for most of the fleet. The wind was again very crazy and from all sides and you had to be very patient and just keep your focus to the end, and that’s what I did.”
“In two races I had a solid result in the top 10 and in the third I think I finished about 20, which was OK considering I was one of the last ones in the first upwind.”
Peter McCoy, GBR
The silver medalist last year was Berecz, now up to third.
“It was another exhausting day. The wind was shifty and it was strong. It was supposed to drop in the afternoon but it went up again, and the last race was the strongest wind we had, so it was exhausting.”
“The first one I finished ninth and the second one I managed to win. I was sailing good lines, but I was lucky as the wind was super shifty.”
Anders Pedersen, NOR
Lobert said, “Today was a nice day on the water, nice racing and super shifty, up and down. I am very happy with my day because I managed to win the first race. I had an OK second race and then I was winning the third race and they had to cancel it just before the end. I was very disappointed, because I don’t think there was anything wrong with the mark moving away. But it’s like it is and I was trying to reset and get back in the game for the last race and I was really pushing and was winning it again.”
“My goal was to try to be in the top three before the final day. I think today I was very happy it was breeze on, because I am usually a good sailor in the breeze but now I am able to be fast in every condition. For sure I like those winds when it’s tricky and windy. I like to use the shifts and try to play as much as I can with the wind and today I was in a good mode.”
“Tomorrow will be a little lighter and a bit shiftier – it’s always shifty in Marseille anyway.”
Milan Vujanisovic, CRO
While Lobert and Pedersen do not have to sail the final Opening Series Race, the forecast for Saturday afternoon is not very promising. If there is no Final in the afternoon, then the results from the Opening Series stands. While Lobert and Pedersen cannot drop in the Opening Series they can change places after Race 10 tomorrow. So the permutations are not as simple as they first look. Of the rest only Berecz had guaranteed his place in the Semi-Final or Final. The rest still have some work to do.
The format being used here is a simplification of the format used in Palma last month and has generated a lot of discussion. After this event a survey will be carried out to seek opinion among the sailors and media.
Henry Wetherell of Great Britain still leads the U23 European Championship, though his lead has narrowed to eight points after a late charge from the 2015 champion, Arkadiy Kistanoc, from Russia. Oskari Muhonen of Finland is now in third.
Henry Wetherell, GBR
The schedule for Saturday is:
10.00 Final Opening Series Race (Race 10)
Not before 13.30: Semi-Final Race (places 4-10 in Opening Series)
Before 17.00 Final (places 1-3 in Opening Series and 1-2 in Semi-Final)
Results after 9 races
1 FRA 112 Jonathan LOBERT 38
2 NOR 1 Anders PEDERSEN 47
3 HUN 40 Zsombor BERECZ 63
4 GBR 11 Edward WRIGHT 64
5 CRO 69 Milan VUJASINOVIC 81
6 CRO 52 Nenad BUGARIN 86
7 GRE 77 Ioannis MITAKIS 86
8 GBR 91 Ben CORNISH 91
9 TUR 21 Alican KAYNAR 100
10 CRO 1 Josip OLUJIC 102
The 2017 Senior and U23 Finn European Championships is being hosted by the Yachting Club de la Pointe Rouge in Marseille, France. The sailing base is about 4 km to the north of the club at Stade Nautique du Roucas Blanc.
5 – 7 May 2017 Measurement/Registration
7 May 2017 Opening Ceremony
7 May 2017 Practice Race
8 – 12 May Opening Series (9 races)
13 May 2017 Final Opening series race followed by Semi-Final (4-10 in Opening Series) and Final (1-3 from Opening Series plus 1-2 from Semi-Final
13 May 2017 Closing Ceremony & Prize Giving
TELEVISION and VIDEO FOOTAGE
Daily VNR of sailing footage for TV and media of 1-2 minutes will be produced by Beau Outteridge Productions and available for download here.
Interviews of sailors in English and home language will be carried out on demand only and made available for download, subject to schedules and available time. Please send requests to Corinne McKenzie or Robert Deaves.
Finals day will be covered live through Facebook Live.
Follow the event on the Finn class social networks.
Hashtags for the event are: #finneuros #finnclass
Facebook - https://www.facebook.com/finn-class
Instagram - https://www.instagram.com/finnclass/
Finn Class Media Manager, Robert Deaves, Mobile: +44 (0)7932 047046
Finn Class Executive Director, Corinne McKenzie, Mobile: +33 (0) 670 10 18 13
ABOUT THE FINN EUROPEANS
Back when World Sailing was the IYRU it used to organise a European dinghy Championship for a crew of one, which was sailed in a class chosen by the host nation with supplied boats. From 1956 until 1962 the Finn was the logical choice for each host nation. The IYRU released control of the event after 1962 and from 1963 onwards the International Finn Association picked up the tradition and it became the Finn European Championship.
For past results please look here.
The idea of a Junior European Championship was born at the 1966 IFA AGM as a solution for sailors under 21 years old, with the first championship being held at Balatonfüred, in Hungary, the venue for this year’s U23 World Championship. Initially held as a stand alone event to encourage financial support from host nations, more recently it has been combined with the Senior European Championship. Since 2017 it has been rebranded as the U23 European Championship.
Past results here.