Sailing: Women warm up for centre stage

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The Independent Online

While tomorrow has been designated as Ladies' Day, the fairer sex was limbering up for glory yesterday with Julia Bailey winning the Dragon class, joining her husband, Graham, in the winner's enclosure as he took the Etchells prize, Christina Summerhayes topped the competitive Laser SB3 class, Liz Savage won the J80s, and Louise Morton took the gun in Class 7.

After being relegated to second for a little navigational lapse the day before, Mike Sanderson took his third trophy in four outings and will be keen to make that four in the Britannia Cup race today.

On Monday, Brian Thompson - one of the unsung heroes of British sailing - starts the Round Britain and Ireland Race in Artemis. Thompson then starts off again to qualify for the single-handed Route du Rhum, which starts in October from St Malo, France, to Guadeloupe, and, amazingly, then hopes to be in the 2008 Vendée Globe, single-handed non-stop round the world race.