Percy plays tough ona hard day

There is nothing like a wet week in Weymouth to inspire the die-hards and search out the tiniest cracks in resolve or ambition. Barometric pressure may be low, but competitive pressure is at a very high level.

The sailors, chilled and sodden by persistent rain, raced on in yesterday's second day of the Chernikeeff Olympictrials knowing that places in the September Sydney sunshine were at stake.

Iain Percy put in two firsts and a second to lead the Finns at the end of their first day. He also lodged a protest against Jamie Lea, who already had a second and a first, for a collision in the third race, when Lea was third but was disqualified. "Unpleasant business, but these things have to be done," said Percy.

The struggle in the high performance 49er fleet is as tough as expected. They sailed four races yesterday and Paul Brotherton and Moray Gray held a slender one-point lead over Ian Barker and Simon Hiscocks.

In the women's 470 dinghy class it is not just a matter of impressing the selectors this week. Britain has yet to qualify for Sydney and the last chance for that is at the World Championships on Lake Balaton, Hungary, next month. After five races and with six more to go, Severine Rees-Jones and Inga Leask are just holding Bethan Raggatt and Sarah Webb.

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