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SAILING: Rickham and Birrell aim to extend run
5:00am Tuesday 20th May 2014 in Local Sport
ALEXANDRA Rickham and Niki Birrell will be looking to extend their unbeaten run to five regattas in the Paralympic SKUD class when they take to Dutch waters for the second leg of the EUROSAF Champions Cup series today.
The duo, who train at the Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy, are among 30 British Sailing Team members across seven classes set to race at the five-day Delta Lloyd Regatta at Medemblik, with the five-time World Champions unbeaten in the SKUD class since winning Paralympic Games bronze in 2012.
The duo, who was also crowned European champions last year, opened the EUROSAF series with victory in Garda earlier this month, and are set to join five other SKUD crews when racing starts at the Ijsselmeer on Tuesday.
Fellow Paralympic sailors John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas will be aiming to maintain their medal-winning streak in the Sonar class, with World Cup series silverware from Miami (silver) and Hyeres (gold) to show for their 2014 season so far, while Portland’s Megan Pascoe will also be hoping to continue her 100 per cent podium record from her three events this year in the 2.4mR class.
Paralympic gold medallist Helena Lucas will also be among the 25 boats contesting the 2.4mR event, where strong opposition from home sailors is expected.
In the Olympic classes, the Portland-based 2012 silver medallist Luke Patience and new crew, double world champion Elliot Willis, will embark on the third regatta of their new partnership in the 470 men’s event.
Racing at the Delta Lloyd regatta starts at 11am today with medal races for the 49er class from 6pm on Friday.
Medal racing for all other fleets starts from 11am on Saturday.
n Follow race updates on Twitter @BritishSailing or go to the Facebook page. n Entries for the Sail for Gold Regatta – the third leg of the EUROSAF Champions Cup series at Weymouth and Portland – remain open until this Friday, at sailforgold.co.uk
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