SKUD 18 Start on day two of the Paralympic Sailing Competition
Photograph:IFDS / David Staley
Jen French and JP Creignou (USA) dominated the second day of SKUD18 racing at the London 2012 Paralympic Sailing competition after they notched up double bullets.
Having recorded a third and a fifth on the opening day the two race wins pulls them into gold medal contention on ten points. Dan Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch (AUS) lead the fleet on eight points closely followed by Alex Rickham and Niki Birrell (GBR) on nine points.
"It's very tight at the top of the fleet and a lot can happen," said French. And on what they need to do for the remainder of the regatta Creignou added, "We just need to stay away from the traffic round the marks."
The Americans blew the field away in the first race and led from start to finish. At the first mark they had established a 22 second lead and with clear water and air they extended their lead at each rounding before sealing a 1:13 victory over Dan Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch (AUS). John McRoberts and Stacie Louttit (CAN) came through in third followed by the Brits.
French and Creignou were equally impressive in Race 4 despite not having it all their own way from the off. The Australians set the precedent early on to lead around the first three marks. But after hitting the mark at the leeward gate, the Australians did a penalty turn allowing French and Creignou through. The Americans used their exceptional downwind speed to take the bullet 47 seconds ahead of Rickham and Birrell.
Fitzgibbon and Tesch remained consistent and finished third to pull one point ahead of the Brits after the opening day saw them locked on three points apiece.
The SKUD18 fleet are set to resume racing at 11:00 local time tomorrow on Portland Harbour.
1. Dan Fitzgibbon and Liesl Tesch (AUS) - 8pts
2. Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell (GBR) - 9pts
3. Jen French and JP Creignou (USA) - 10pts
4. John McRoberts and Stacie Louttit (CAN) - 14pts
5. Marcos Gualandris and Marta Zanetti (ITA) - 23pts