Annalise Murphy goes into the final races of the Laser European and World Championships on her native Dublin Bay with a comprehensive 17 point lead ahead of Holland’s Olympic silver medallist Marit Bowmeester.
With the prospect of a breezy finale on the waters off Dun Laoghaire Murphy is looking to resume the same kind of form which has led to seven wins from her nine starts here and convert her big lead to her first major Laser Radial title. A disappointing 27th in today’s light breezes is her discardable result.
Although the men finished two races for the Olympic rigged fleets, the corresponding Women’s Radial class only managed one because the fickle breeze died away too much. Murphy was disappointed not to have the chance to atone immediately for her disappointing 27th place, while Bouwmeester was also dismayed that only one race in her preferred lighter conditions was sailed.
The Dutch sailor said “It is a shame to only get one race. It looked like a bit of an early decision. That is a shame. It was a tricky race which reminded me a bit of Weymouth in the N’ly wind, so it was nice to race in that again. I was just in the top group at the windward mark and then got up to second on the second upwind. But we will be back hiking again tomorrow.”
Annalise Murphy says she will change nothing for the decisive final day, concentrating on making better starts than today’s which was the start of a frustrating downwards spiral which was concluded when she ran out of breeze close to the finish line. “It was difficult” Murphy said, “ I had a bad start and struggled to get into the race in the first half, but made a good comeback on the second upwind, the last downwind and the reach to get into the top 15. But I was close to the finish line and then the wind died. I was not moving and could do nothing at all about it. I lost 15 places at the finish line and so that was disappointing. It was a shame not to get a second race in. The breeze came in but it is always hard to tell.”
“I am disappointed with today. I would much preferred to have a 15th rather than a 27th or whatever it is. I will just have to get out there and have good races on the last day. I just need to get better starts than today’s and try and not make any mistakes.”
While Bouwmeester rose to second overall she is now just three points up on Britain’s Ali Young.
Topping the Womens Laser Radial event, Annalise Murphy delivered another two race wins in her Gold fleet.
Murphy now has a 15-point lead and effectively still has a race discard in hand as her second place from Monday is currently dropped from her score.
The weather has favoured her this week, but today looks set to be that day with lighter conditions due.
“The conditions aren’t that typical as its warm, sunny and windy with big waves from the south-east. It’s pretty rare really,” Murphy said yesterday.
“The first two days were more like Dublin Bay – really shifty – which I’m used to but also really enjoy because I know how it works. I was enjoying the racing but others were pretty confused.”
Annalise Murphy recorded two race wins in the 2013 Laser European and World Championships just off Dún Laoghaire’s East Pier.
The conditions were perfect for her and she gained an early lead.
More than 300 competitors from around the world have gathered in Dún Laoghaire’s.
Murphy’s Laser Radial class is divided into two flights that sail six qualifying races, ending tomorrow evening when the gold, silver and bronze fleets are decided for the next three days’ championship racing.
While another day of strong results today will help Murphy considerably, Wednesday will be a major test when she faces fellow London 2012 Olympic finalists Marit Bouwmeester from the Netherlands and Evi Acker from Belgium who are drawn in the other flight for the Laser Radials.