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Sailing: Falcon takes flight: Mercenario forced out

WITH so much to play for in what should be a fast 150-mile short offshore race in the Commodores' Cup, it was not surprising that there had to be a general recall after the first attempt to start the race as the tide began to ebb underneath the 27 boats.

Even when the line was moved a little further out, the jostling remained aggressive. Jochen Schumann, of Germany, had to restart Astro, and England's The Wall appeared to become entangled with Argentina's Mercenario, which then retired.

The big boats were again led by Falcon, for the United States White team. But he was being chased by Tony Todd's Eagle, sailing for Wales.

Going round Poole Fairway buoy, Omen was leading Class Two for Germany, from Kropp Duster, of the United States Red team.

The Mumm 36s of Class Three had been shoulder to shoulder, trading tacks along the island shore while struggling to reduce sail in the gusty conditions.

At Poole, Achim Greise of Germany, in Aerosail 3, just had his nose in front after being well down at the start. David Clarke's Pigs in Space, fitted with a new mast overnight, was second.

ROLEX COMMODORES' CUP: Revised overall positions after jury decisions on protests: 1 USA White 35pts; 2 Germany Green 56.75; 3 Germany Red 58.25; 4 USA Red 64.25; 5 Netherlands 83.25; 6 Jersey 86; 7 Argentina 86.25; 8 England 99; 9 Wales 115.