San San fights back to second

PUBLISHED : Saturday, 24 May, 2003, 12:00am
UPDATED : Saturday, 24 May, 2003, 12:00am

Lee Lai-shan clawed her way back into contention in the women's mistral event at the SPA Regatta in Medemblik, Netherlands, after finishing first and seventh in her two races on Thursday to move into second place overall.

San San, who had a horrific start on day one when she was forced to retire after rounding a wrong mark in the second race, fought back strongly in difficult conditions to win race three. Although she could not keep up the good work, falling behind to finish seventh in race four, San San had done enough to move into the top three.

'It was very difficult conditions in offshore winds. San San did well to move up into second place overall,' said coach Rene Appel.

Competitors in the 28-strong field had to discard their worst result after the fourth race and San San dropped her result from race two - leaving her on an aggregate of 10 points, accumulated from finishes of one, two and seven. She now trails Frenchwoman Lise Vidal by six points. Vidal's worst finish was a fifth place in race three which she has dropped. Her other finishes were two first places and a second.

A second discard will come into effect when the full nine races are completed. San San's hopes of securing successive European victories - she was crowned European champion a fortnight ago in Sicily - will be pinned on top-place finishes in the remaining five races.

Hong Kong's other two female competitors, sisters Chan Wai-lei and Chan Wai-man, dropped out of the top 10 overall standings when they were both ruled out of race four after being on the wrong side of the line at the start. Chan Wai-kei was 13th and Chan Wai-man 15th.

In the men's fleet, Ho Chi-ho continued to perform consistently as he recorded a third and fourth place finish to emerge in third place in the overall standings. Chan King-yin was in seventh place, while Cheng Kwok-fai was lagging behind in 35th position.