Olympic preview, Day 3

Australian Sailing Team Leader Iain Murray on what to expect in the third day of Australia’s pursuit of Olympic sailing gold.

Written by Iain Murray

27 July 2021


Today we have three new classes taking to the race course with the 49erFX, 49er and Finns starting their regattas. The Lasers will return with three races to catch up for the one they missed on the first day, and the Laser Radials also have two so it is a pivotal day for the Australian Olympic sailing team.

We are expecting the unexpected with the weather today. It will no doubt be a very testing day for all of the sailors, and the plan for today will be to come out of it with really consistent scores.

It is the kind of day where you can lose the regatta but not win the regatta.

We are caught up in the outskirts of this mild typhoon that has come in over Tokyo. We are seeing the remnants of that this morning as we are covered in thick cloud, it’s raining and we are expecting a volatile wind in the 10-20 knot range with substantial shifts in the wind direction.

It’s going to be an action packed day, it’s going to be very difficult to get a handle on as it is not a typical day by any means.


We see today a Jake Lilley like we have never seen before. His attention to detail, his personal fitness, his outlook on how to race and his own race plan is very different to what we saw in Rio.

He could be a black sheep in this fleet so keep your eyes on him.

Tess and Jaime have put in a huge amount of work and today is the day they have been working so hard towards. They are sailing well in open sailing and today will be the test they have been waiting for in terms of sailing strong and keeping their heads out of the boat.

I am confident, I know Harry [Mighell] is confident and the girls are in great shape. They are ready to pull it all together and hopefully all of their hard work brings the results they deserve.

Will and Sam are experienced players. They have grown up in a world where the sea and the wind are a part of their DNA which has equipped them well for days like this. Their perception and skill of reading it as it comes and dealing with it means it could be a good day for Will and Sam.

The 49ers are a really tough fleet, but I know their training has been going extremely well and they are ready to go today. Bring on the racing.

Mara is just at the start of a long sailing journey. Today we are expecting her to go out there and put it all to the test in a confident and aggressive way. We saw that on display yesterday with her leading the second race, and the learnings out of that were to keep her flamboyance going and not become conservative.

I think you will see her active and aggressive on the race course today.

Today is a huge day for Matt. He has three races and it is probably the single most important raceday in his life so far.

It is going to be a day of big scores in the Laser fleet. It will be a real test of skills to get all of these shifts, race positioning, strategies and tactics right across three races. Matt is in a very good place, he goes in to today with confidence in himself and hopefully we will see three very solid scores at the end of the day.

Today’s racing will begin at 1:05pm AEST with the Women’s Laser Radial and the Women’s 49er FX. Both races will be streaming live on 7Plus.


This article was originally published by Australian Sailing.




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