Jonathan Lobert leads Opel Finn Gold Cup after Day 2 on Balaton

Wednesday, 06 September 2017


  Jonathan Lobert, from France, has taken the lead at the Opel Finn Gold Cup at Balatonföldvár, Hungary. Though he led both races on Day 2 at some point, the tricky Balaton breeze got the better of him twice and the race wins went to Brit, Ed Wright and Swede, Max Salminen. Salminen is now in second with Facundo Olezza, from Argentina, third.

The forecast was for slightly less wind than Monday and from further to the south. But it was still shifty and tricky with many place changes through the fleet. Huge gains and losses could be made with a few lucky, or unlucky, decisions

Race 3 got away first time in 10-14 knots. Jake Lilley, from Australia, rounded first from Lobert and Ioannis Mitakis, from Greece. Lobert flew down the run to lead through the gate and looked to be heading for a win. However a big right hand shift on the second beat shuffled the leading pack, with new U23 World Champion, Oskari Muhonen, from Finland, leading Wright round the final top mark.

Nicholas Heiner, from the Netherlands, also made gains and was soon chasing the leaders downwind and just moved into second just before the final mark, with Mitakis moving back up to third. Lobert crossed someway back in ninth.

It took some time to get Race 4 away. The wind initially started to drop, but after a 30 minute postponement, was back up to 10-12 knots. One general recall and two black flag starts pulled out seven boats, including overall leader Nenad Bugarin, from Croatia. Lobert was again in front at the top mark, after favouring the middle left, from Arkadiy Kistanov, from Russia, and Salminen. The same three led through the gate, but on the second upwind, the left side came in, with Lobert being more conservative in the middle, and losing out again.

Salminen came past at the top and extended downwind for a comfortable win. Lobert hung on for second and let a tightly packed group across the line with Olezza also gaining hugely to cross third.

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