|AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND-(8-1-2007) Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie are celebrating tonight after establishing an unassailable lead in the Women's 420 World Championships. While results from Takapuna today are still preliminary the pair of Laser Radial sailors appears to have sealed the Women's 420 World Championship title without having to sail the final two races.
Today's windy conditions suited Aleh and Powrie who were excited about hitting the water this morning.
'It looks awesome out there,' said Aleh while preparing for racing earlier in the day. She was looking at 15 to 20 knots of north easterly breeze creating a choppy swell across the Hauraki Gulf and crashing onto Takapuna beach.†
Racing was tight amongst the top kiwi contenders; however Aleh and Powrie won the first race of the day, and then had a second place to consolidate their huge point's margin over second place. Now 22 points behind them in second overall, Sarah Bilkey and Rosie Sargisson can't catch the leaders even if they win both remaining races tomorrow.
Bilkey and Sargisson still have some work to do however, with Shelley Hesson and Bianca Barbarich-Bacher hot on their heals. Both the kiwi pairs in second and third are on equal points so tomorrow's racing will decide silver and bronze. Sarah Tam and Tze Ting Lim are in fourth, ten points adrift.
The kiwi sailors contesting the Open division also relished the windy choppy conditions off Takapuna today. 16 year old defending champions,
Carl Evans and Peter Burling continue to lead the 420 World Championships going into the final day on 13 points. They won race eight, and then placed second in races nine and ten, sailed today.
Simon Cooke and Scott Illingworth closed the gap on the leaders today leaping up the point's table after the second discard came into play. They performed well on the water with a second and then two wins in the three races sailed today.
With two final races remaining for the Open division, Evans and Burling have a six point lead over Cooke and Illingworth. Adler and Faria of Brazil are in third place overall.
Racing resumes at midday tomorrow if conditions allow. Stronger winds are forecast.