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Derrick claims 12th National title, Datta wins Optimist title

Panaji, May 18 (UNI) As expected, Derrick Menezes has won the Boardsailing Championship title, overtaking others in the National Board Sailing and Coastal Optimist Championship, which concluded in Goa today.

This is Derrick's 12th National title. Remy had to be content with the second spot, followed by Donald taking third place and Ghanashyam and Prakash finished fourth and fifth respectively.

Meanwhile, in the Optimist Championship, Upamanu Dutta took the first place overall, followed by Sheldon in second place and Veer Menon in third.

The day witnessed several surprises but a determined Donald left other behind to win the title.

The tenth race of the championship sailed in the wind of around 8 knots was perfect for Remy and he was expected to have a cake walk in the race. However to every body's surprise, it was Derrick, Donald and Tripathi in the first 3 positions at the first windward mark with Remy lying in 5th position. A determined Donald put up a superlative sailing performance to edge pass Derrick on the second beat and take the lead in the race for the first time. Ghanashyam also in the meanwhile managed to overtake Tripathi and closed the gap with Derrick. It was anybody's race with all 13 sailors grouped closely together. However in the final reach to the finishing line Donald pumped his heart out to race ahead and took his first gun of the championships. Ghanashyam and Derrick battled it out with Derrick edging past Ghanashayam in the last 20 minutes to take the second spot, followed by Ghanashyam, Remy and Tripathi in close succession.

The last race of the championship saw a pumped up Donald reviving to win the final race. Derrick, Ghanashyam and Donald got off to an excellent start and raced ahead followed closely by Remy and Prakash. A close battle ensued between Derrick, Donald and Ghanashyam, with Remy gradually catching up to form a separate foursome at the top. The lead kept changing in between Donald and Derrick for the first and second position and between Remy and Ghanashyam for the third position, at each leg of the race. However, in the final leg, Donald managed to inch ahead of a tiring Derrick to take his second gun of the championship with a lead of barely 5 minutes. Derrick took the second place closely followed by Remy and Ghanashyam.

The final two races of the optimist Championship saw keen tussle between Upamanu Dutta and Sheldon D'Mello of Goa, since both of them were in the running for overall championship. The first race of the day saw Upamanu race ahead at the start, while Sheldon got caught up amongst several other boats. Upamanu took the advantage of the situation to race ahead and to take the gun.

Sheldon however languished in the eighth position.

In the last race of the day Upamanu kept Sheldon covered at the start line and in the bargain both overshot the start line and were forced to do the penalty. Veer Menon however shot away in the meanwhile and raced ahead to take the gun in the last race. Upamanu kept Sheldon covered throughout the race and inspite of his best efforts Sheldon was unable to get past Upamanu.

The championship depended upon which sailor took the higher spot between Upamanu and Sheldon in the last race. Upamanu managed to go ahead of Sheldon and finished ahead to win the overall championship with Sheldon taking the second spot and Veer Menon finishing third.


Story first published: Monday, May 19, 2008, 4:41 [IST]
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