Markus Wieser extends lead at Dragon Gold Cup

The leading pack is beginning to show after four races at the Dragon Gold Cup in the Dutch city Medemblik. With two more races to go it already is a valid championship, with defending champion Markus Wieser leading so far. Despite the mild wind of the last days the event is on schedule. Up to the closing day on Friday there are six races scheduled. In total 86 Dragons participate in this unique event that annually takes place in another country.

 

 
Wieser, who sails for the United Arab Emirates, is no longer as unapproachable as Monday after two races. The first and second race of the event he sailed two first places which immediately made a huge gap between him and the other participants. But because of a 25th and a fifth place in today's races he let the competition come much closer. Poul Richard Hoj-Jensen is now provisionally second with only five points behind, Yevgen Braslavets is in third place with 11 points difference with Wieser. The best Dutch sailor is Pieter Heerema in tenth place.

Black Flag

During the Dragon Gold Cup the contestants sail, according to tradition, daily one long race, six in total, which all will count for the final classification. Today, Wednesday, it was great sailing weather with twelve knots of wind. In contrast to yesterday, when the race had to be aborted because of calm. Thereby today the participants sailed a resail of yesterday and in addition the planned race, making it a long day for everyone. 

The resail began with a black flag, the same as at yesterdays start. Which led to a number of disqualifications, because several boats started too early. Because there is no discard in this event, a bfd (black flag disqualification) weighs heavily in the overall standings. According to the Chairman of the Dutch Dragon Class, Huib Bannier, at this event there generally is very sporty sailing: 'That is also the Mission in the Dragon Gold Cup. Because all 86 boats start at the same time, there is a large starting line. That makes it particularly difficult for the Committee to see who is over the line too early. After a general recall normally a black flag follows. Anyone who then starts too early will be disqualified.' 

Festivities

Also in the evening there is plenty to do for the sailors. There is a hustle and bustle on the quay at the Oosterhaven, where all the Dragons are docked. Bannier: 'Last night we had the traditional Gold Cup dinner. We served an Indonesian meal, which of course is the Dutch pride, and which was widely appreciated. Afterwards there was live music until late hours.

– Regatta Media

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