Robertson moves up

OLYMPIC GAMES
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The Independent Online
Sailing

Another day and a few dollars in the bank for Britain as the racing finally kicked into gear on the tracks off Savannah, Andy Beadsworth leading from start to finish to notch up a win in the three-man Soling, writes Stuart Alexander.

Shirley Robertson scored a well-earned third in the Europe single-hander, with Penny Wilson taking fifth on the Mistral Windsurfer, as did David Williams and Ian Rhodes in the Tornado catamaran.

While winning is important, it is consistency that counts, and four top- 10 places in eight starts was a big boost for Britain. After a seventh in the opening race, Beadsworth, Barry Parkin and Adrian Stead were second overall by three points to America's Jeff Madrigali and two points clear of the 1988 gold medalist, Germany's Joachen Schumann. In the second race of the day, Beadsworth was eighth to stay in third place overall as Sweden's Magnus Holmberg retired with a broken inner forestay.

Robertson's third was won in a comeback from ninth as Courtney Becker- Dey, navigator on Bill Koach's America3 all-woman America's Cup defence crew, led all the way round, though she was pushed at the end by Denmark's Kristine Roug. Robertson then added a fourth in her second race to put herself third overall behind Roug and Becker-Day.

Uncharacteristically, the 19-year-old Ben Ainslie, in a 10-knot south- southwesterly which should have been ideal for him, finished 27th. As the second race of the day started in a brisker breeze, Ainslie was well down and then involved in a big pile-up, only to fight back and finish third.

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