Dempsey breezes in for three wins at Sail For Gold

Dorset Echo: HAT-TRICK: Nick Dempsey HAT-TRICK: Nick Dempsey

WEYMOUTH’S Nick Dempsey relished the conditions in the RS:X windsurfing 9.5 class and added three race wins and a second to his scorecard yesterday.

The two-time world champion is second behind Elliott Carney (GBR) overall and admits that the conditions were a lot more favourable than Monday.

Dempsey said: “Certainly Monday was difficult. We’re racing very short courses so you make the slightest mistake and then you’re kind of in trouble. “Yesterday was much easier for me – I’m pretty fast so you just hook in and go. But yesterday was hard.

“Elliott seems to be sailing okay – he sailed well on Monday but yesterday was pretty easy for me really – we’ll see what the rest of the week is like. Hopefully it will be a little bit harder today – if it’s windy, it’s easy but if it’s light then it’s hard.”

Since last summer’s Games, Dempsey has begun training with a new group of sailors from the British Sailing Team Podium Potential Squad, with the Wey-mouth star giving praise to the younger generation of sailors.

He said: “I’ve done a lot with Tom Squires and the past couple of weeks has been the first time we’ve trained with some of the younger boys and they’re really, really good.

“It’s great to see. I haven’t seen that for 10 years, the depth in sailors is great. We’ll try and take them on board in our training group and do as much as we can with them, try and make them better and bring them up to speed. The better they are, the better it is for me and for British Sailing.”

After two days of tricky breeze at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, a fresh 15-20 knot south westerly breeze greeted the sailors as racing ramped up on day three of the Sail for Gold Regatta.

All classes took to the water as scheduled with poor visibility early on and gusts of up to 25 knots across some of the outer race courses.

In the RS:X 8.5 class, runaway leader Bryony Shaw added a further two race wins to her impressive score line while Robert York put a stop to Shaw’s dominance with two race wins himself. Izzy Hamilton remains third after another consistent day out on the water.

Shaw said: “It was going to be interesting to see how Robert got on in the windy stuff and he definitely performed really well.

“I am disappointed to have lost my clean sweep but it’s really nice to see Robert stepping up and giving me a good bit of competition yesterday, so good on him.”

Taking firm control in the female 49erFX class is British Sailing Team’s Charlotte Dobson and Nicola Groves.

The pair had a great day out on the water with a fourth and three race wins.

Poole’s Lucy Macgregor and Sophie Ainsworth sit second following a consistent 1-4-4-2 while France Peters and Lyme’s Mary Rook round off the British dominance in third.

The battle of the Brits continues in the 2.4mR Paralympic class with Portland’s Helena Lucas and Megan Pascoe neck and neck as the regatta reaches the half way stage, with Lucas scoring 4-4-3 and Pascoe posting 3-3-4.

Barend Kol (NED) had the better of days, clinching two firsts and a second to sit him nine points off the two front runners who hold 19 points apiece.

John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Stephen Thomas continue their superb run of form in the Paralympic Sonar class, with three more race wins to extend their lead to five points at the top of the leaderboard.

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