The Australian Sailing Team's Tom Slingsby has finished day one of the 2009 Laser World Championship in seventh position after two races in Halifax, Canada.
The two-time Laser World Champion got his campaign for a remarkable third straight title off to a strong start with a seventh in race one and a victory in race two to be just four points behind the leaders.
“I had a pretty good day today,” said Slingsby. “The first race was in about 10-12 knots of wind and I was doing very well, about third or fourth around the bottom but had a really average second beat. I worked the middle and both sides overtook me to put me in about 11th or 12th to the top, I then had a nice run to pick up to seventh.”
“In the second race the wind built a little to about 14-16 knots and to me it looked like a left hand track. I had a good start just up from the pin and continued a long way left, almost to lay line and luckily the wind increased and shifted slightly left. I rounded first and held my lead around every mark.”
The first two races leave Slingsby just a point behind 2008 Beijing Olympic Games Gold medallist Paul Goodison with another three days of qualifying races remaining.
“It's good to get day one in the books,” said Slingsby. “You can't win the regatta on the first day but you can definitely lose it. I'm happy to get two good results and hopefully I can build on that from here.”
Australian Sailing Development Squad athlete Ashley Brunning is the second placed Australian and is currently in 29th with a sixth and 17th place finishes.
Fellow ASDS sailors James Burman and Tom Burton are in 70th and 76th respectively with Burman claiming a strong 11th in the second race.
Ryan Hannan is in 99th, ahead of Todd Hughes in 100th and Ben Gunther in 112th. Jake Flintoff sits 118th, with Sean Bly in 122nd and Ashley Lloyd in 138th.
For more information go to www.australiansailingteam.com.au.