Friday contained two more medal races at the 2018 World Sailing Championship with the Men’s Laser and Women’s Laser Radial classes concluding. In total 14 Laser and 18 Laser Radial Olympic quotas were up for grabs, with a maximum of one boat per nation per event. Japan is also excluded due to already qualifying as host. The championship is being held in Aarhus, Denmark from July 30th to August 12th 2018.
The men’s Laser was led by 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Sam Meech of New Zealand whom had a great start, winning the first three races. The lead lasted the first three days and six races until a poor seventh race gave the 2017 World Championship bronze medalist Matthew Wearn of Australia an opportunity to take the lead. Though, the lead was shot lived as he was quickly overtaken by the defending world champion, Pavlos Kontides of Cyprus whom went into the medal race with a lead of four points over Wearn. Despite Kontides’ ninth place finish at the medal race it was enough for him to win gold (59 points) with silver going to Wearn (61 points) while Germany’s Philipp Buhl upgraded his fourth place at the 2017 World Championships to a bronze (70 points).
The Olympic quotas went to: Cyprus, Australia, Germany, New Zealand, Great Britain, Norway, France, United States, Finland, Estonia, Brazil, Croatia, Peru and South Korea.
For most of the women’s Laser Radial races the leader flipped between the United States Paige Railey and 2016 Olympic bronze medalist Ann-Marie Rindom of Denmark. Poor performances in the last few races however gave Belgium’s Emma Plasscaert an 11 point lead over the defending Olympic champion, Marit Bouwmeester of the Netherlands. Plasscaert had a very impressive 2018 season, winning the 2018 World Cup Series Final. The lead was more than enough as Plasscaert won the event with 66 point. Silver went to Bowmeester (75 points) while bronze went to Rindom (85 points).
The Olympic quotas went to: Belgium, Netherlands, Denmark, Finland, United States, Canada, Great Britain, Hungary, Switzerland, Turkey, Poland, Greece, Italy, Sweden, France, Norway, China and Germany.
Overall Great Britain maintains its qualification lead with a boat qualified in each concluded event while France has qualified in four out of the five events. The next opportunity to qualify to the Olympics in these events will be at the 2018 Asian Games and 2019 Pan American Games for Asian and Pan American nations respectively while the next general qualifier will be the 2019 World Championship.
Women’s Laser Radial
* Great Britain
* United States