Annalise Murphy has become the second sailor to qualify Ireland for the 2016 Olympics
Photo credit ISAF
Annalise Murphy from Providence Team IRL has today (17 September) become the second sailor to qualify Ireland for the 2016 Olympics. Competing at the first Olympic Qualifier in Spain, Murphy has finished 20th overall from 120 boats and 16th nation. Only the top 19 nations, from a total of 58, earned their country the chance to compete at the Games in Brazil in two years’ time.
“I started the regatta pretty badly so it was difficult to back out on the second day and make Gold fleet. But I had a really good day and then continued to claw my way back up the fleet” commented Murphy. She went on to say “My primary goal for competing here was to win a medal but my secondary goal was to qualify to county. Unfortunately I didn’t quite reach my first goal but it’s great to have been able to qualify Ireland in the Laser Radial”.
The 23 year old from Rathfarnham, who competes in the Laser Radial class, had a mixed performance at the ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander where 50% of the Olympic places were awarded. Her results ranged from a 5th to a 43rd in what were light conditions for the majority of the regatta. Today was the final day of racing and the final chance for Murphy to qualify. Overnight she was 28th and 21st nation so everything hinged on her performance in today’s scheduled three races.
The wind had arrived this morning averaging about 20 knots. With no room for error, Murphy catapulted herself to the top pf the fleet in the first race of the day. Neck and neck with the world’s best, she crossed the finish line in 13th place. This was exactly what she needed boosting her up to 20th overall and 16th nation. Two further races had been scheduled but at 18.05 CEST the decision was made to cancel due to the lack of wind.
James O’Callaghan commented “While the overall result was not her best, you can’t but be impressed with the way Annalise fought back after a disastrous first day. We are delighted with nation qualification“.
There was a sense of déjà vu for Ryan Seaton and Matt McGovern today. The Providence Team IRL skiff sailors had been reseeded to the 49er Yellow fleet but perfectly mimicked yesterday’s results; a 2nd and a 15th. One further race will have to be sailed tomorrow by the Blue fleet in order to make a qualifying series. At that time the overall positions will be known and the Gold and Silver fleet cut will be made.
The 20 knot breeze in the early afternoon caused plenty of drama for Ireland’s 49erFX pair. Andrea Brewster & Saskia Tidey broke their mast before the first race of the day had even begun. They raced ashore where real sportsmanship quickly became apparent. Team USA and fellow teammates Ryan Seaton & Matt McGovern, as well as numerous others, rushed to their assistance. Within moments they had replaced their mast and were making their way back out to the race course. Within that time the race had been riddled with capsizes and was ultimately abandoned which meant no penalty for the girls.
The FX fleets then had one race a piece in the afternoon. Brewster & Tidey finished 14th and now lie 35th overall. They’ll have two more qualifying races tomorrow before they separate into Gold and Silver.
There was only one final fleet race today for James Espey and the Laser Standard Gold fleet. He finished 44th in Race 8 and 38th overall. The Providence Team IRL sailor qualified Ireland for the 2016 Olympics in the men’s single-handed class earlier in the week.
Finn Lynch and the Laser Bronze fleet had no racing again today for their final day of the regatta. Lynch finishes his first Laser Standard World Championship in 101st place out of 147 sailors. No mean feat for the 18 year old who only graduated to this highly competitive senior class earlier this year.
Ross Hamilton sailed three races today in the Finn class. He had a 33rd, 32nd and 30th leaving him 64th overall and qualifying for the Silver fleet for the rest of the Championship. Racing will continue for the Finn class until the 21st of September.
All results provisional
Full Results & Event Website
For full results and further information on the ISAF Sailing World Championships & Olympic Qualifiers see www.santander2014.com.
ISAF Sailing World Championships & 2016 Olympic Qualifiers, 12 – 21 September 2014
More than 1,250 sailors in over 900 boats from 84 nations will compete in Santander, Spain from 12-21 September at the ISAF Sailing World Championships. The best sailing talent will be on show and as well as world titles being awarded across ten events. 50% of Rio 2016 Olympic Sailing Competition places will be won based on results in Santander.
Race Schedule for Irish Sailors
Racing will begin at 12 noon GMT daily from 12 – 21 September.
For a more detailed class/fleet specific schedule see www.santander2014.com.
About ISA Performance & Team
The ISA Performance Department guides sailing programmes from junior through to Olympic and Paralympic. There are currently 102 sailors training as part of the ISA Performance Pathway. All of these sailors are closely monitored and follow a tailored strength and conditioning programme managed by Sports Med Ireland in addition to receiving regular coaching on the water.
Providence Resources Plc is an Irish based oil and gas exploration company whose shares are traded on the London AIM market and on Dublin’s ESM market. Providence, along with its partners, is currently leading a circa $500 million multi-year drilling programme on a number of exploration and development wells over six basins offshore Ireland. This programme represents the largest drilling campaign ever carried out offshore Ireland.
About Gul Performance Apparel
Gul is an internationally renowned manufacturer of high quality watersports equipment and apparel.
VeloRevolution Custom Cycling and Triathlon Clothing is an Irish company that had been searching for unique sports stars outside of the cycling and triathlon community to showcase its innovative products to. Through Sports Med Ireland, VeloRevolution was introduced to the ISA Performance Department and their Squads. Together VeloRevolution and the ISA believed that a partnership would be of great benefit to both organisations, offering a key insight in to how Ireland's top sailors can prepare, train and excel while using cycling as a tool for fitness training. VeloRevolution supply ISA Performance with the best quality clothing items which use the most innovative fabrics as worn by the Tour de France riders so the team can feel great and train hard when out on their bikes.
About High5 Sports Nutrition
High5 is a leader in performance sports nutrition. Their bars, gels and drinks fuel many of the world's best athletes. They combine the latest developments in sports science with years of racing experience to create products that will help you perform at your very best, no matter what your ability.
High5 is pleased to be teaming up with the ISA for 2014. The ISA has proved they are a great Academy for sourcing and training young athletes through their programmes and coaches to be Irish and European Champions and hopefully World and Olympic Champions. High5 believes it can provide the necessary fuel and support needed to help this happen and hope them all the best for 2014.
Harken is an international performance sailing hardware manufacturer.
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