Betschart leads the way for Bermuda
Rachael Betschart led Bermuda’s charge during the opening qualifying races of the Semana de Mar del Plata Regatta in Argentina yesterday.
The 14-year-old held her own competing in variable breezes to improve her chances of qualifying for the gold fleet.
Betschart produced finishes of eighth, 23rd and fifteenth in the opening three races of the 12-race qualifying series to end the day 42nd in an overall fleet of 243 sailors.
The Warwick Academy student finished 39th overall at the event last year.
Betschart is among a quartet of Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Academy sailors that are flying the island’s banner in Argentina this week, which also includes national Optimist boys and girls champions, Christian Ebbin and Nicole Stovell, and Magnus Ringsted.
Ringsted produced the island’s second best showing yesterday with finishes of 37th, sixteenth and second that left him in 61st in the standings.
Four spots back in 65th is Stovell, who produced finishes of 29th, 20th and tenth in the opening qualifying races which were initially contested in light breeze that built throughout the day.
Ebbin, who produced the island’s best showing of fourth overall at last year’s event, endured mixed fortunes that left him in 106th.
The Somersfield Academy student got off to a flyer with finishes of fifth and tenth in the first two races putting him in early contention for top honours.
However, his fortunes took a turn for the worst when he broke his sprit halyard before the start of the third and final race of the day and was unable to compete any further.
This resulted with Ebbin being scored 65th which he is certain to drop when the fleet is allowed to discard their worst score after the sixth race is completed.
Ebbin, Ringsted and Betschart are all making their third appearance and Stovell her second at the regatta which RBYC sailor Chase Cooper won in 2013.
Gilman Hackel, of the United States, recorded a clean sweep of victories in the opening three qualifying races to take the early lead in the standings.
The Semana de Mar del Plata Regatta is being organised by the Club Nautico Mar del Plata in conjunction with the Yacht Club Argentino and runs until Saturday.
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