Muscat: A healthy 10 knots of breeze built up after a short postponement, sailors were able to enjoy another action packed day on the water during Day 4 of Mussanah Race Week, Oman Sail's world class annual dinghy regatta.
The racing continued to be close for the competitors from 30 different nations, however as the afternoon wore on, the breeze dropped off and the sailors' strength, concentration and patience was tested to the limit.
Internationally renowned coach, Chris Atkins, kept a close eye on the young Optimist sailors: "It was lovely to see the sailors demonstrating their new skills," stated Atkins "It was also clear that the fleet was led by those who had attended the clinics, which just goes to show that practicing hard and sharing knowledge really does pay off." With UK's Harry Bone-Knell leading the pack, MaheshBalachander from India in second and Oscar Lindley Smith from the UK lying in third place, the racing continues to be intense.
Ireland's Fionn Conway put in another good performance in the Laser 4.7, winning both races of the day; "I had to work really hard in order to stay ahead of the Qatar boat, they were putting a lot of pressure on me, and it was tricky to sail in the light winds and bouncy waves at the very end of the afternoon. I made up a lot of ground on the reaches."
Whilst Conway has a convincing lead on the scoreboard, racing is close on the water, and the young sailors' focus is being continually tested by Qatar's Mohamed Al Mohamed who is in seond, and UK's Ross Banham is in third.
Still leading the Laser Radial fleet is Singapore's Jevyn Ong; "I had a good day, after being OCS at the start of the first race, I realised I had to watch the line carefully. I played the shifts and tried to sail clean races."
Close behind him is teammate Amos Lim from Singapore and in third position is Adil Khalid from the UAE.
On the Laser Standard course the first race of the day went to Australia's Tom Burton, who maintains a convincing lead: "Fairly solid day for me, it got a bit tricky when the wind died towards the end, but I knew it would track left so I managed to stay ahead.
The only issue is, I can't seem to get rid of Andy." New Zealand's Andy Maloney is hot on Burton's heels and holds on to second place overall with UK's Paul Goodison retaining third position. The F18 class enjoyed the mid afternoon's fresh breeze, and yet again the leading two boats were jostling for pole position, with French team Gurven Bontemps and Benjamin Amiot narrowly claiming first position in the first race of the day, after Oman's home grown talent Musab and Ahmed led the night before. Racing has been fiercely close between these two crews throughout the week, and it looks like it will be a battle to the end.
The French team are in the lead, but there is everything to play for in the final day's racing, as Oman's Musab Al Hadi and Ahmed Al Balushi are right behind them in second, closely followed by French team Tanguy Kervyn and Emmanuel Boulogne.
It was another tough day for the RSX Windsurfers, as they experienced winds just a bit too light to get planing in. Sweden's Adam Holm won the first race of the day, and the second race went to Oman Sail's Faisal Al Quataiti
Adam Holm firmly holds on to first position, with Oman's Waleed Al Kindi in second and Faisal Al Quataiti also from Oman in third.