Strong winds and big waves meant tired bodies and minds at the first day of racing for the Final Series at the Laser European and World Championships on Dublin Bay on Wednesday.
Local favourite Annalise Murphy continues to delight her army of supporters, sailing on her own home waters, as she reeled off another two race wins to lead the women’s Olympic Laser Radial class by a comprehensive 15 points. Murphy may have been very much revelling in the tough conditions in which she has always excelled but she admits she still found it hard going. “It was really windy, the windiest I have been out in for a while.” Murphy recalled, “ The downwinds were a bit scary and I was in safety mode at times”.
Annalise was an unlucky fourth at the Olympic Games in 2012 having won her first four races there so will be hoping her luck continues this time round .
Murphy maintained her perfect score line, now counting seven wins from the eight starts so far and discards a second place. British Sailing Team’s Alison Young, who finished in fifth at the 2012 Olympic regatta – one place behind the Dublin helm – is now up to second place, whilst the Netherlands Olympic silver medallist Marit Bouwmeester lies third.
“Annalise is having a storming regatta. Fair play to her. She is going well and we need to figure out how to catch her. We need to hike harder!” smiled Young.
“I had a bad start in the first race” Murphy reported, “I was just slow to get off the start line and took a bit of a risk but it came good and got round the windward mark first and so was a bit lucky but I was pleased with that race. The second race I rounded the top mark second and was first on the first downwind. The other girls overlaid the first lay line on the second upwind and so they sailed a bit more distance, so I did pull out a good bit”.
“Every day has been going well so far. It felt much the same today. I am just trying to focus on sailing well and not making too many mistakes. I had a bit of luck in the first race getting that wind shift and I am not complaining about that too much. That is the way in sailing, sometimes it just goes your way and you are grateful for it.”