Huntington's Erik Storck and his Olympic sailing team’s chances took a major hit with two disappointing races in the 49er skiff tournament yesterday in Weymouth, England.
Team USA finished last and 17th, respectively, in its two races yesterday morning. Storck and his partner, Trevor Moore, took 20th in the tournament's 12th race, completing the course 4:21 after winner Australia (35:04). Australia also won Race 13, in 31:59, and the United States were 3:03 behind.
Sunday’s poor showings dropped the United States to 15th place in the standings, and only the top 10 teams qualify for Wednesday’s medal races. Australia is in first place with 44 points, ahead of New Zealand (64) and Great Britain (90).
Storck and Moore do have two races remaining with which to make up ground. However, they no longer control their proverbial destinies and will also need teams ahead of them to falter. Team USA has 115 points; Ireland, with 117, is in 10th place.
The points are cumulative and carry over into the medal round, meaning even if the United States qualifies, it would be difficult to earn a medal.
Team USA had climbed four spots into 10th place after a relatively strong showing Friday (they took second, 17th and fifth in their three races). But Sunday’s struggles now have them in a precarious position.
Shelter Island’s Amanda Clark and Team USA struggled yesterday in the women’s 470 class taking 19th and 20th in their two races.
In their fifth run of the tournament, the United States clocked in 2:27 after winner Great Britain (59:09) and placed 19th. Clark and partner Sarah Lihan took last in a later race, finishing 2:38 after Italy (1:04.46).
Those races dropped Team USA from fourth to eighth place (41 points), with four races remaining. Great Britain leads with 12, ahead of New Zealand (19) and the Netherlands (21). The teams have Monday off and will resume Tuesday.
“We are lucky to have some time to decompress,” Clark said. “We have to change gears and get back on track. I believe we’re capable of doing it and I don’t see today as foreshadowing of how the rest of the event will go.”
Bayport’s Debbie Capozzi and her women’s Elliott 6-meter team went 8-3 in the round-robin tournament to earn the No. 3 seed entering Tuesday’s quarterfinals. Team USA is set to face Finland, which they edged, by two seconds, on July 31.