Sailing: James Epsey and Finn Lynch battling it out

Baltimore Sailing Club’s Fionn Lyden delivered a wake-up call to the two leading contenders for the Irish place in the Laser class for Rio 2016 yesterday at the Palma Olympic classes regatta.
Sailing: James Epsey and Finn Lynch battling it out

Although trailing in third place in the trials, he won the first race of the day in the Silver fleet where all three are placed after six races.

However, in the second race of the day, coming into a mark his mainsail control jammed briefly and he collided with a Japanese competitor.

After taking his penalty for the collision, he ended the race in 32nd place and 17 place behind Ireland’s London 2012 veteran James Espey.

Both Espey and Carlow native Finn Lynch are locked in a nip and tuck battle for the Irish nomination and halfway through the trials series, the pair are separated by a single point.

“The Laser selection trial is turning out to be a really close contest that is far from decided,” commented ISA Performance Director James O’Callaghan.

Meanwhile, Kinsale’s Darragh O’Sullivan had a fifth and a second place in the Laser class Bronze fleet where he is a single point off the podium with two days of racing left.

A forecast of strong winds today will be welcomed by the Irish skiff sailors after a lacklustre day yesterday.

Light airs and calm conditions kept the men’s 49er’s ashore until late in the day when they only had one race.

Ireland’s Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern had an eighth that leaves them fourth overall but still in contention for a podium result on Saturday.

On their first major outing in three months, Andrea Brewster and Saskia Tidey had a 30th place in their first race yesterday but recovered some of their opening day form to finish 14th in race two.

Both skiffs fared well in Monday’s breezy conditions so today could bring a turn-around in fortunes for both.

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