RS:X Euro Championships 2010: one destiny has many paths

The breeze certainly shuffled the pack in the RS:X European Women's Windsurfing Championships. The top three from yesterday took the down elevator to finish the day in the bottom half of the top ten.

The new leader is four time Volvo Youth ISAF World Champion, Laura Linares [ITA] who thanks to her bullet and a tenth place has taken over the number one spot on equal points with Marina Alabau [ESP].

Just two points cover the top five with Moana Delle [GER] two points adrift in sixth. This then is going to be a tight finish with wind forecast for tomorrow. It may not top out at 20 knots but expect planing conditions nonetheless.

Racing in her first RS:X Europeans since the 2008 Games, the legend that is Alessandra Sensini [ITA] is in fourth ready to pounce on any mistakes. Yesterday's leader Malgorzata Bialecka [POL] has hung on to equal Alessandra's points total so if the forecast is wrong - and it could well be - she too could be back in medal contention as well.

Over in the men's fleet, Shahar Zubari [ISR] proved to all the doubters who say he can't sail in a breeze that he can indeed do the business in up to 20 knots. Banging in a second and a fifth has just cemented his seven point lead over Piotr Myszka [POL] who has moved up to second place in front of Byron Kokalanis [GRE].

Add Ivan Pastor [ESP] fourth, into the mix and you have the fight for the medals. Fabian Heidegger [ITA] who was in with a chance yesterday kept blowing his gybes in the slalom section resulting in some unscheduled water starts. As a result he can only claim to lead the peleton 17 points back.

With one more full racing day left, It's now or never. No-one has found an answer to Shahar in the men's fleet, he confirmed that he has been working on his planing technique in training. He is now almost the complete racer and the odds on favourite to take the RS:X European Men's Windsurfing Championship, The women's championship is wide open and set for a thrilling finish.

Men
1. Shahar Zubari [ISR] - 11 points
2. Piotr Myszka [POL] - 18 points
3. Byron Kokkalanis [GRE] -20 points
4. Ivan Pastor [ESP] - 22 points
5. Fabian Heidegger [ITA] - 34 points

Women
1. Laura Linares [ITA] - 41 points
2. Marina Alabau [ESP] - 41 points
3. Zofia Noceti-Klepacka - 42 points
4. Alessandra Sensini [ITA] - 43 points
5. Malgorzata Bialecka [POL] - 43 points


SOURCE: ISAF