Sailing: Conner loses time

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The Independent Online
SAYING that 'a significant error' may have been made by an international panel of referees sitting in Fremantle, a new jury here yesterday lopped four hours off compensation awarded to Dennis Conner's Winston for going to the aid of the Italian yacht, Brooksfield, in the second leg of the Whitbread Race.

While this further extends Chris Dickson's lead in the W60 class to a dominant 17hr 40min 18sec it means that just one hour 28 minutes covers the chasing group of four, Yamaha, Winston, Intrum Justitia and Galicia, going into the second half of the race.

The old jury gave Winston 21hr 28min 30sec, which had the effect of reducing her leg time to just one minute less than the runaway winner, Lawrie Smith in Intrum, and pushed Winston up to second overall.

Smith, plus Ross Field, of Yamaha, and Javier de la Gandara, of Galicia, who were also ahead of Winston at the time she answered the distress call, complained it was too much and Intrum threatened to withdraw from the race.

After the new hearing Brad Butterworth, Winston's co- skipper who is recovering from a gall-bladder operation, said: 'We are disappointed and will look at the rules the new jury used to turn it around. We are not going to make it easy for them.' It pushes Winston down to third W60 after three legs.

Revised third-leg times,

Sporting Digest, page 35

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