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The potential is there: the Russian sailing team performed at the Princess Sofia Cup

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Annual regatta Princess Sofia Cup ended onMallorca on Saturday, April 6. Since April 1, in winds from 5 to 25 knots in different classes 10 to 15 races of the fleet have been held, in which 1224 athletes from 67 countries took part. «The regatta has become the first» sailing trial in Olympic format before next competitions in Tokyofor men in Finn class and women in 470 class.

Two windsurfers and one men's crew in the 470 class made it into the top ten of the Russian team.

«I see a lot of potential in the season that is starting. <...> Despite all the difficulties, we managed to make the winter preparation as effective as possible. The starting point is set, and now we will only increase the momentum for the upcoming major competitions of the season - the World Championships», - summed up the performance of Russians during the regatta, national team head coach Natalia Ivanova.

Vladislav Burmistrenko and Alexander Askerov took fifth and sixth places in the RS:X class.EvgenyAyvazyanwas placed 20th, and he did not take part in 9-10, or, consequently, in the medal race. The coaches took him out of the competition deliberately, so that he had time to recover for the European Championships, which started on April 7 in Mallorca. The same decision was taken in respect of windsurfer Maria Lemenkova, and Russian women windsurfing star Stefania Elfutina did not participate at all in the regatta for the Princess Sofia Cup to save her energy for the championship.


The battle for first and second places in both men and women's races was fought between competitors from Hong Kong andChina. The best among the men wasMichael Cheng from Hong Kong, and Chinese athlete Yue Tan took the first place among the women with a significant margin of 22 points.

Pavel Sozykin and Denis Gribanovbecame seventh in the overall classification in class 470. By the medal race they came in ninth place. The pair managed to come together on time and correct their position after being relegated to 22nd place in the middle of the competition. The last start with the top ten also turned out to be successful for the Russians: the third place allowed them to move up two more lines in the overall standings.

The second Russian male crew in the 470 class -ChristianCzech and ViktorTarasov - is only 53rd in the overall ranking.On the other hand, Christian's brother, Jan Cheh, who paired with Ivan Zotovin 49er class, has a decent 15th place in the regatta.

«15th place in the gold fleet is a good result. It is clear that on the last days the arrivals were worse than in qualification, because the gold fleet includes the most qualified crews, and any arrival in the "twenty" is a good arrival. By the way, right behind our guys were Shimeand Mihovil Fantela, the reigning world champions from Croatia», - commented Natalia Ivanova.

The only female pair representing Russia in FX 49er also has an optimistic result: although Zoya Novikova and DianaSabirovaare only 39th in overall classification (and 13th in the silver fleet), their level has increased significantly, said the coach of the «Krestovsky Island»The team could have done better, because several times they were among the leaders, but it did not happen because of the upsets.


Sergey Komissarov showed on competitions the fourth best result among Russian yachtsmen. In Laser class he took the 21st place. According to Natalia Ivanova the performance of the yachtsman on the whole left a double impression. At these competitions he had everything: both arrivals, «with what people win regattas», and disqualification for false start, and finishing 41st in the standings, and the race on Thursday, when he was so unlucky that he didn't meet the control time. The latter case deserves a separate story.

«Sergey got off to a good start with a group of leaders and they all went the same way. Some people who started poorly were behind them and because of despair they simply went in the opposite direction. But at some point the group of leaders unexpectedly "ran out" of wind. The group that got off to a bad start was luckier: there was still some wind and they managed to get to the mark. It turned out to be a huge gap which could not be compensated by», - recalls Natalia Ivanova.

Still, according to the national team coach, Komissarov's work inspires hope for a good season and that he is able to win an Olympic license.

Among the Russian girls in the «Laser .»Ekaterina Zyuzinawas the best with 42nd place. In the class «Finn» best result in ArkadyKistanov(he 35th), in the class Nacra MaximSemenov and Alina Shchetinkinafinished the regatta in 39th place.

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