Lamma Island

Dane grabs early edge over Etchell rivals

PUBLISHED : Sunday, 09 November, 1997, 12:00am
UPDATED : Sunday, 09 November, 1997, 12:00am

DENMARK'S Poul-Ricard Hoj-Jensen raised hopes of a good run in the OOCL World Etchells Championships when he won the practice race yesterday off Lamma Island writes Nazvi Careem.

With excellent wind speeds of around 20 knots, only five boats completed the two-mile course with the rest of the fleet using the race to gain a measure of their opponents.

American Gary Gilbert was second and Australian John Bertrand finished third.

Jeff Madriagli, who won the recent OOCL Hong Kong China Championship, said: 'We quit on the second leg as we were just out there to practice.' The series, which ends on Friday, is the last leg of the World Series.

Skippers are also competing for the World Series Trophy, calculated on accumulation of points over three years and four regattas.

Hong Kong's Warwick Downes is in first place overall followed by another local sailor, Mark Thornburrow.

Some of the world's top sailors are in Hong Kong for the event, including Bertrand, who was skipper of the Australia boat which won the America's Cup for the first time in 1983 off Newport, Rhode Island.

A fleet of around 30 boats is competing in the regatta.