24th of January 2008, Australia, 2008 Oceanic & Australian FW Championships

Windy conditions continue to push racers to the limit

Suttons Beach continues to turn on the wind and perfect racing conditions for the competitor at the 2008 Formula Windsurfing Oceanic and Australian Championships. With 18-24 knots on the course throughout the day and the large swells and difficult shorebreak still present, the conditions pushed the racers to the limits.

Steve Allen (AUS-0, Gaastra/Gaastra) continued his domination of the event early, by taking two bullets in the first two races. After the lunch break, in the final two races he opened the chance for his strong opponent Jesper Vesterstrom (DEN-111, Starboard/NeilPryde) to score his first victory for the regatta. Jesper managed to find this speed again in the final race and took another bullet.

After the third day of racing Steve Allen is still leading the results with 5.75 points ahead of Jesper Vesterstrom with 9.50 points. The Western Australian Jesper Orth (AUS-10, Starboard/Severne) wasn't able to pass the leaders with his port tack starts today, but still showed some promise with two third's and a fourth in the first three races today. With 16.75 points he is a little down on second place but in a relatively safe position from fourth placed Sean O'Brien (AUS-120, Starboard/Gaastra) on 22.00 points.

In the fourth race of the day, Sean O'Brien managed to pass Jesper Orth on the final upwind to score his second third place for the day before Jesper broke his outhaul and had to retire from the race on the final downwind.

Last year's Oceanic Champion Sam Parker (AUS-3, Starboard/NeilPryde) recovered from missing the first race with a broken mast to secure a fifth and two sixths, still keeping him in fifth place overall. The Australian Windsurfing Association President, Brett Morris (AUS-8, Starboard/NeilPryde) saw his opportunity today to pass the New Zealand RS:X sailor Antonio Cozzolino (NZL-131, Starboard/NeilPryde) who had a disappointing day to fall 9.00 points behind Brett Morris who is in 6th position on the board.

The conditions at Suttons Beach have certainly proved windy the past few days and the forecast is for that trend to continue tomorrow but with the wind moderating down to 15 – 20 knots from the same direction. With the wind continuing to blow throughout the night at the race venue the slight drop in wind in today's racing did not change the size of the waves out on the course and seems unlikely to bring flatter conditions tomorrow with the decreasing winds.

With the consistent winds the race committee have been able to take advantage of the conditions and have the races over for the day by 4pm, allowing the sailors time to recover and tune their gear for the following day's racing. The skipper's meeting is again set for 11am tomorrow and the final four races of the event will start at 12pm. This is the final opportunity for Jesper Vesterstrom to challenge Steve Allen for the event win and for defending champion Sean O'Brien to attack Jesper Orth for a spot on the podium.

Further information about the FW Oceanic & Australian Championships as well as a media service with press releases, results, rankings, background information and photo/video downloads can be found on the official website www.fw-australia.com.

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Join the discussion

Anonym | 25th January 2008 (16:51:15)

so, who's the winner?

SeanAUS120 | 27th January 2008 (01:55:33)

1st - Steve Allen (AUS-0)
2nd - Jesper Vesterstrom (DEN-111)
3rd - Jesper Orth (AUS-10)
4th - Sean O'Brien (AUS-120)
5th - Sam Parker (AUS-3)
6th - Brett Morris (AUS-8)
7th - Antonio Cozzolino (NZL-131)

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