SNOW-HANSEN/WILLCOX & OLIVEIRA/BARBACHAN THE WINNERS OF 2019 WCS EVENT IN GENOA21 Apr 2019
Kiwi and Brazilian sailors claimed the two gold medals on the final day of the Hempel World Cup Series event in Genoa.
Fernanda Oliveira and Ana Luiza Barbachan clinched the Women's 470 title for Brazil. New Zealand's Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox dislodged the overnight leaders in the Men's 470 to seal their first World Cup title together.
Genoa was hit with light winds all week long and Sunday's action was no different. The wind was up and down for much of the day and although there were some delays, a veering north westerly 5-9 knot breeze ensured all five Medal Races were completed.
Click here to watch the full live show back with direct links to each Medal Race below:
Men's 470 - https://youtu.be/bS681CYD9aY
Women's 470 - https://youtu.be/bS681CYD9aY
Every team in the Men's 470 had a shot at taking a medal with the points close between the top ten racers.
Zangjun Xu and Chao Wang (CHN), New Zealand's Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox and Switzerland's Killian Wagen and Gregoire Siegwart occupied the podium spots before the Men's 470 Medal Race.
The Kiwis were just three points off the Chinese and knew a strong performance would boost their chances at overturning the deficit.
Snow-Hansen and Willcox led at the top mark as the Chinese struggled at the back of the pack. At the front of the fleet, the Kiwis battled with the Swiss team and Japan's Keiju Okada and Jumpei Hokazono. The Japanese managed to take the race win and were followed by the Swiss and the Kiwis.
The Chinese managed to work back up the pack but it was too little too late. Their fifth gave the Kiwis a one-point win as they settled for silver.
"That's our first World Cup win so we're really stoked," said Snow-Hansen. "We were winning round the top mark so we were hoping it would pan out a little easier for us but then we were right in the mix of it [with the Japanese and Swiss].
"We only knew we had it in the bag only halfway through the last reach. The Chinese clawed back into it so it ended up being really tight."
Although any one could have taken a medal, there was no change in the podium finishers as the Swiss teams second meant they held on to bronze.
The biggest movers were Japan's Okada and Hokazono who climbed to fourth from tenth after their race win.
Fernanda Oliveira and Ana Luiza Barbachan (BRA) had gold confirmed ahead of the Women's 470 Medal Race. Three consecutive race wins in the opening series gave them an unassailable lead.
They took third in the Medal Race and were delighted with how they sailed across the seven completed races, "It was an incredible week," expressed Oliveira. "It was a very good week even though it was difficult with light winds and a lot of waiting. We managed it well. It seems that it's [wind delays] our life. Sometimes you have to wait to sail in big winds and light winds.
"But if you have good results, you'll enjoy any wind."
Mathematically, eight teams could finish on the podium. Italian sailors Benedetta di Salle and Alessandra Dubbini as well as Elena Berta and Bianca Caruso held the podium positions going into the Medal Race.
China's Mengxi Wei and Haiyan Gao started the day in sixth and they jostled with Silvia Mas Depares and Patricia Cantero Reina (ESP) at the front of the pack.
The Chinese team claimed the race win and put themselves in prime position to move up onto the podium.
As Berta and Caruso struggled at the back of the pack in ninth position, a medal for them was a hard task so it was up to di Salle and Dubbini to fight the cause for the home nation.
Di Salle and Dubbini swayed between fourth and sixth place all race long but they crossed the line in fifth which meant they missed out on silver by a single point, handing it to the Chinese as the Italians settled for bronze.
Hempel World Cup Series Genoa was the final round ahead of the Final. Marseille, France will host sailors for the Hempel World Cup Series Final from 1 to 8 June 2019.
Results are available here - http://sailing.org/worldcup/results/index.php
Sunday Medal Races - 470
URL - https://youtu.be/0N7vriMpM-U
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Source: World Sailing