Sailing Olympics Day 9 Preview

A more convincing U-turn for the weather would be difficult to imagine. Yesterday was a drifting match in scorching sunshine before the pin was pulled, today the rain is teaming down with the breeze forecast to explore the other end of the scale with gusts of up to 30 knots.
While many of the sailors may be able to deal with such conditions, several went out early to sample the unusual weather, it doesn’t take much to imagine the difficulties that might be faced with setting courses.
Early indications that this might be an issue came with reports that the committee boat on course E, that of the Tornado and Star, was taking on water and the fleets were sent back to the harbour.

Here’s this morning’s weather forecast from GBR meteorologist Libby Greenhalgh:

A shallow low pressure system tracking from the WSW will see a complete reversal in the weather conditions. With hazy sunshine being replaced by cloudy and wet conditions BUT more importantly the calm conditions that postponed the medal racing yesterday will be replaced by lively windy easterly conditions.

The low pressure and associated frontal system will approach through the morning and track to the north of the area late afternoon resulting in an E veering S airflow
Expected conditions are to be a building breeze initially E 15-18 building to ESE 18-22 KT with a marked veer around 1600 associated with the clearing front and a further increase to SSE 20-24 KT gusts to 30

Heavy rain expected on the front could provide some squally conditions with up to 30 KT for the later medal races with building sea conditions up 2-3 FT increasing to 4-5 FT with S airflow late afternoon

LW 1137 HW 1653

As per yesterday, a big day for the Brits with Ben Ainslie and the Yngling girls both looking to take home golds, but this time with the prospect of too much breeze. For Ainslie, the points buffer makes the prospect a bit easier than for the girls who go head to head in a match race against the Dutch.
The 49ers also have their medal race today, another one to watch closely where, if they start and the conditions prevail, getting round the course may be what counts.

Elsewhere off Qingdao:

RSX board sailors will have some fun in the breeze and the waves. Keeping the boards on the water will be an issue for many of the flyweight sailors. Such a change of gear in the weather conditions could make for some interesting results.

Tornados could have some similar fun and games, especially given the tight points grouping at the head of the table where just 7 points separate the top three.

Star, equally tight here with the top seven places separated by one point apiece after three races. Keeping the rig in the boat will be the big issue aboard these over-canvassed machines.

Lasers difficult to imagine better conditions for these flat decked flyers and yet another fleet that has little to separate the top third of the fleet.

Laser Radials, here it’s the top two places that are particularly close, but with five races yet to be sailed, there’s still time for a re-shuffle.

To keep completely up to date with the current status on a day that could provide plenty of action see – Official Olympic Sailing Schedule plus mark roundings


Light and…..brilliant. Nick Rogers tells Matthew Sheahan about his tricky day in the 470 class

UK Laser sailor Paul Goodison talks to Matthew Sheahan after his opening day at the 2008 Olympics

British 470 sailors Nic Rogers and Joe Glanfield describe their first day on the race track 11-8-08

Ben Ainslie after the second day of racing plus comments on penalties �” 10 Aug