|AUCKLAND, NEW ZEALAND-(6-1-2007) Its NZL top three in the Open and NZL top four in the Women's division at the 420 World Championships being sailed off Takapuna on Auckland's North Shore. Evans and Burling lead the Open, while Aleh and Powrie lead the Women's.
†A light south westerly breeze in the morning increased during the afternoon to around 12 to 15 knots with cloudy skies and good sailing conditions, at Takapuna for the third day of racing.
†Defending World Champions Carl Evans and Peter Burling kicked off the finals on a high note with two wins and a second in the three races sailed for the Open fleet. With a total of five points on the leader board, the pair from Auckland and Tauranga respectively now has a nine point lead over closest rivals Simon Cooke and Scott Illingworth.
Cooke and Illingworth, who finished the qualification series in second, today placed 6th, 2nd ond 4th and are laying second overall with a total of 14 points. Rowan Swanson and Bruce Kennedy (NZL) were the other performers in the Open gold fleet today, rounding out the days racing with a win and climbing into third. They have a points total of 19.
Competition is tight at the top of the Women's division with the two kiwi crews battling it out. They are now halfway through the 12 race series to decide the 420 Women's World Champion.
Sarah Bilkey and Rosie Sargisson won the first of today's two races, and were also then able to discard their worst race score, allowing them to eliminate the point's gap on overnight leaders Jo Aleh and Olivia Powrie.
In today's second race Aleh and Powrie had the lead at each mark rounding and won the race. This means Aleh and Powrie have stretched out a ten point margin over their kiwi team-mates, who placed 11th in the second race today, at this half way point for the women.
New Zealanders Shelley Hesson and Bianca Barbarich-Bacher are laying third overall while sisters Sarah and Emma Berry, from Wellington are in fourth.
Racing resumes tomorrow at midday.