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RS:X Worlds at Takapuna - Kiwis extend on day 4

New Zealand retains the lead for men and women at the RS:X World Championships after day four of racing off Takapuna. Underway at one o’clock in light, shifty conditions it was a very physical racing for the gold fleets that were first on the water. Consistency was elusive for many competitors. The light weight windsurfers with the fitness level required to pump the sail of the RS:X board around the course in the light winds had the edge today with just a touch of luck required also. While the kiwi’s still have the overall lead in both the men’s and women’s fleets there was some serious shuffling on the leader boards today. Tom Ashley was 3rd and then 13th in racing today and retains the men’s lead breaking away to extend an eight point margin as his nearest rivals suffered in today’s challenging conditions. Ashley’s ability to pull solid results in a range of conditions sees him firmly at the top of the leader board after race eight in this eleven race regatta. In second overall at the start of the day Ivan Pastor Lafuente of Spain wore the blue vest on to the water but will relinquish the vest tomorrow after an 11th and a 25th in racing today he drops to sixth overall. Shahar Zubari of Israel rockets from fourth place up to now lay second overall behind Ashley. Zubari was 8th and 2nd in races seven and eight respectively and now has a points total of 34 behind Ashley on 26. It’s Poland three and four on the leader board with Przemyslaw Miarczynski climbing into third place overall after a 5th and 7th in racing today. Countryman Piotr Myszka slips from third overall back to fourth. Barbara Kendall NZL is now six points clear of Alessandra Sensini ITA at the top of the women’s division. In race seven Kendall struggled and had her poorest race yet with a 15th though she promptly responded to that with a win in race eight. Sensini was 3rd and then 9th in racing today and holds onto second place six points adrift of Kendall. Behind her the order changed with Marina Alabau of Spain overtaking her team-mate Blanca Manchon who slipped to fifth place overall. Faustine Merret of France sits between the Spanish girls in fourth place on the board at the conclusion of day four. Racing resumes tomorrow. Gold Fleet Men – Race Seven In the light tricky conditions off Takapuna Beach today Maksim Oberemko of Ukraine brought home the first race of the day climbing through to cross first after rounding mark one in seventh place. Makoto Tomizawa of Japan was 2nd and overnight leader Tom Ashley of New Zealand was 3rd 25 seconds behind the race winner. Wearing the blue vest for second overall Ivan Pastor Lafuente of Spain was 11th in race seven. Gold Fleet Women – Race Seven The Chinese sailors were strong in race seven’s light conditions taking crossing 1st and 2nd. Mingli Duan and Peina Chen battled it out early in the race before Duan opened up a lead on the final leg and won by just over a minute. Wearing the blue vest today Alessandra Sensini of Italy was 3rd in race seven. Overall leader Barbara Kendall had her poorest race yet with a 15th place. Gold Fleet Men – Race Eight Ho Chi Ho Of Hong Kong had the race of his regatta leading from start to finish and winning race eight with a 46 second margin over Shahar Zubari of Israel in second. Frederico Esposito of Italy was third with Jon-Paul Tobin of New Zealand in hot pursuit just two seconds behind. Tom Ashley was 13th in race eight while Lafuente of Spain was back in 25th place. Gold Fleet Women – Race Eight Barbara Kendall came out in race eight and responded to her race seven result with a convincing win. She fought with Lise Vidal of France early in the race but Vidal dropped away and finished 4th while Kendall crossed in first. Pauline Perrin of France was 2nd and Faustine Merret, also of France, was third. Provisional Top Ten Standings RS:X Men’s World Championships Day Four 1st Tom Ashley NZL – 26 points 2nd Shahar Zubari ISR – 34 points 3rd Przemyslaw Miarczynski POL – 37 points 4th Piotr Myszka POL – 41 points 5th Joao Rodrigues POR – 42 points 6th Ivan Pastor Lafuente ESP – 47 points 7th Jon Paul Tobin NZL – 48 points 8th Nick Dempsey GBR – 53points 9th Nicholas Le Gal FRA – 53 points 10th Samuel Launay FRA – 60 points Provisional Top Ten Standings RS:X Women’s World Championships Day Four 1st Barbara Kendall NZL – 14 points 2nd Alessandra Sensini ITA – 20 points 3rd Marina Alabau ESP – 26 points 4th Faustine Merret FRA – 28 points 5th Blanca Manchon ESP – 29 points 6th Mingli Duan CHN – 32 points 7th Charline Piccon FRA – 35 points 8th Peina Chen CHN – 43 points 9th Bryony Shaw GBR – 47 points 10th Lise Vidal FRA – 48 points For full results visit http://www.rsxclass.com/worlds2008.html Images for editorial use Professional images of today’s racing taken by Ocean Photography will be available for editorial use. To view visit http://www.rsxclass.com/worlds2008.html Please email jodie@yachtingnz.org.nz Further information is available from: 2008 RS:X World Championship website: http://www.rsxclass.com/worlds2008.html International RS:X Class Association Rory Ramsden Mail: rory.ramsden@btopenworld.com Takapuna Boating Club Denise Parris Tel: 021 026 76499 Mail: mediatakapuna@gmail.com Yachting New Zealand Jodie Bakewell-White Tel : 0292 008 492 Mail : jodie@yachtingnz.org.nz

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