It's been a frustrating few days for the 369 young sailors assembled here in El Puerto de Santa Maria for the 2019 Techno 293 World Championships, where the local hosts, Club Nautico Puerto Sherry in cooperation with FAV, have laid on a fantastic week that has been lacking only one thing so far: wind!
With the boys fleets having managed a couple of rounds of racing on Tuesday, between the swirling banks of fog that eventually caused racing to be abandoned for the day, hope and expectation were high that yesterday everyone would have a chance to stretch their arms and legs and post some scores to get on in the rankings.
As it turned out conditions were decidedly marginal and the Race Committee sent the competitors out on the water in an effort to keep the race schedule moving along, and to have any chance of hitting the 12-race target by Saturday's final day of racing and the prize-giving that will follow. Given the conditions, everyone did an amazing job and all the fleets now have at least two races completed. The wind was light and racing went on into the evening.. This was further complicated by some protests and after such a long day everyone will have been keen to get to bed early, especially as an early start is planned for today to try and catch up on the schedule.
In Junior Girls, the impressive Israeli team (who cleaned up at the European Championships earlier this year) are showing the way once again. Danielle Ziv, Tamar Steinberg and Shir Kravetc are currently 1-2-3, with Spain's Azul Sanchez Vallejo tied on points with Kravetc in fourth place. In Junior Boys, overnight leader Victor Gaubert (France) has been overtaken by the combative Israeli Daniel Halperin, but it's incredibly tight between the top five that includes Francesco Forani and Federico Pilloni (Italy) and Billy Coll Tulloch (Spain).
The Youth Girls got into the action, and after the opening two rounds it's a cosmopolitan leader board and tight 6-way fight, with Hong Kong's Cheuk Wing Mak taking first day honours, ahead of Jade Bruche (France), Nadia Kulik (Poland), Mika Kafri (Israel), Naiara Fernandez (Spain) and Danae Pontifex (Greece).
Only one race yesterday for the Youth Boys, and a small amount of shuffling on the leader board, with Israel's Adir Twill leapfrogging Italy's Davide Antognoli to claim top spot, ahead of Twill's Israeli team mates Tal Basik Tashtash and Ido Pomerantz, followed by France's Jules Chantrel.
By the time you read this the Race Committee will be busy setting the courses ready for the planned early (10.30am) start, if the conditions are co-operative. If all goes well today the rankings will give us some good clues as to who our 2019 World Champions might be, with two more racing days to come.