The opening day of racing at the inaugural ISAF Sailing World Cup Final has been described as spectacular, fantastic and perfect.
Smiles were present before racing at the Abu Dhabi Sailing & Yacht Club, on the waters off of the Corniche and around Lulu Island and back ashore upon the conclusion of racing.
A north westerly breeze that ranged between 9-14 knots greeted the sailors across the four race tracks. The outside courses saw big waves to add some spice to the sailors lives whilst the flat water on the inside Corniche course tested the sailors all round abilities.
Racing for the 270 sailors from 38 nations across the ten Olympic and open kiteboarding fleet commenced at 12:00 local time and wrapped up with a full complement of races in the Olympic events.
Riccardo Leccese (ITA) came out on top on the opening day of kiteboarding after he picked up a pair of bullets. He heads into the next stage as top seed. 2014 World Champion Maxime Nocher (FRA), European and Open Asian Champion Oliver Bridge (GBR) and 2013 World Champion Florian Gruber (GER) follow in places 2-4.
The 20 competitors will be divided up for Stage 2 heats on Friday and Saturday based on their seeding from Stage 1. The top ten boats will then progress to the medal stage.
Two semi-finals will be held with five racers in each. Places 1 and 2 will carry forward ten points, 3 and 4 seven points, 5 and 6 five points, 7 and 8 four points and 9 and 10 three points. Two races in each semi-final will follow with the top two placed sailors in each heading to the final.
From there, it's a four way single race shoot out for the podium spots.
Racing across the fleets is scheduled to commence at 12:00 local time on Friday 28 November.
Results are available here -www.sailing.org/worldcup/results/index.php
Live TrackingThe racing will be available to watch in 2D and 3D via the live tracking.
Click here to view live tracking.
Fully-produced highlight packages from 27-30 November are available to view on the">
ISAF Sailing World Cup website
ISAF Sailing World Cup Facebook
About ISAF Sailing World Cup Final Abu Dhabi
All ten Olympic events will be contested in Abu Dhabi from 26-30 November, with an open kiteboarding event joining the fray around Lulu Island off the UAE capital's stunning Corniche.
With just 20 boats in each event the competition is set to be fierce. Equipment will be supplied in eight of the ten Olympic events (RS:X sailors shall bring their own equipment) and support will be available for travel expenses and accommodation.
The Abu Dhabi Sailing and Yacht Club will host the ISAF Sailing World Cup Final with some technical facilities located at the adjacent Abu Dhabi International Marine Sports Club. The venue is located on the main island of the city with immediate access to the beautiful waters of the Arabian Gulf.
The ten Olympic events will contest an opening series and a Medal Race with the kiteboard fleet using a short track format. Prize money will be in awarded to the top three overall finishers in each of the Olympic events from a total prize purse of US$200,000.
The qualification system for the 2014 Final was published on 30 July 2014 and is included Addendum A of the Notice of Race.Click here for the Notice of Race.The first sailors to secure their place were confirmed at the ISAF Sailing World Championships in Santander where the top ten in each event were offered a place.