Fletcher celebrates birthday with success in Palma

Fletcher celebrates birthday with success in Palma
By Sportsbeat

04/04/2018 at 02:12

Birthday boy Dylan Fletcher celebrated his 30th with a near-perfect score on day two of the Princess Sofia trophy.

Alongside fellow 49er world champion Stuart Bithell, the pair finished the day's racing in Palma, Mallorca, with two wins and a second place.

Their success in the 10-15 knot winds of Palma Bay secured them a place at the top of the overall rankings.

"I've certainly had worse birthdays," said Fletcher. "This has got to be one of the best.

"Thirty years old and a 1, 1, 2 – I'll take that!

"We thought it was going to be a bit windier than it was but it turned out to be a lot lighter and trickier, so we are really pleased to come away with a good day.

"We knew we'd done well but didn't realise we'd gone top until we got in. It puts us in a good position going into the rest of the week.

"We had a really good day – hopefully we can continue this good form and see where we get to in a few days' time."

The ten fleets will now be split up into gold, silver, and bronze fleets, with only the top ten sailors in the gold fleet qualifying for the medal races on Saturday April 7.

Meanwhile, Ben Saxton and Nicola Boniface emulated Fletcher and Bithell's 1, 1, 2 finish, leaving them in the top spot of the Nacra 17 after two days of racing.

"We're learning on the job but we're quick and we got off the line well in two races," said Saxton.

"We kept it simple and now we're on top, which is pretty cool."

Elsewhere, new mother Bryony Shaw made it two wins out of three in the RS:X class, moving into pole position, and Nick Thompson finally hit his stride in the Laser Standard class with first and fourth-place finishes after an opening day which saw him languishing in 20th.

Thompson is now fourth overall behind Finn Alexander, Sam Meech and Tom Burton.

"It's been classic Palma so far – shifty and hard to read," Thompson said. "It's great to be racing with so many boats though.

"It was good to get a win under my belt, and I'm looking forward to gold fleet starting tomorrow."

Sportsbeat 2018