Every day in Palma is better than before so we are expecting a lot of tomorrow; but for now we focus on today.
Today the sea breeze put in its best performance so far with great 14- 18 knot breeze and a good wave pattern giving the boats plenty of opportunities to leap down wind.
Race 10 started in 14 knots of breeze under P flag; there was an individual recall and no-one returned ... this was to be bad news later for Krsto Matulić (CRO) who was scored OCS.
At the first mark Robertson (AUS) had a health lead with a chasing pack headed up by Keen (GBR), Poston (GBR) and Schwerdt (GER).
A lap later Robertson still held the lead but elected to gybe set as the windward mark to keep a clear lane downwind; however the chasing group bore away set and went right and this gave Keen the opportunity to overtake; Robertson held on to second with Poston (GBR) pulling through to take 3rd.
Race 11 started in a building 16-18 knots and at the first mark again Robertson lead from Poston and Ashby (GBR). Now the sea state had built further and the wind was a good steady 18 knots giving the competitors plenty to deal with and a few upturned hulls were evident at the gybe point.
Dave Poston however was having no difficulties and blew through to take the win from Keen and Schwerdt (GER); Robertson came home 4th.
The final race of the day; race 12 was started under P flag and again the fleet got away cleanly. At the first windward mark local hero Justo Martinez (ESP) lead from Robertson who was loving the conditions chased hard by a tight pack headed up by Ben Schooling (GBR).
The wind moderated for the second beat but as the fleet turned downwind for the last time the breeze kicked into 18 (maybe a bit more) making the final downwind a real grandstand finish for the spectator fleet.
At the finish Martinez had held on to take his first race win from Robertson in second and Schwerdt in third.
An epic days sailing for the competitors; the championships looks to be a two horse race from here; Keen has closed the gap on Schwerdt at the top with his lead now just 6 points.
The chasing pack from 3rd downwards is so tight that no-one is counting points and will be focusing on their own performances on the final day with 2 races scheduled.
This is the first time we have run a 14 race programme for the World Championships and the competitors are really enjoying the extra length and challenge the longer programme offers.
In the age categories the competition is tight with the masters leaders separated by just 3 points which Tim Hill (AUS) leading.
Roger Oswald (SUI) has a good grip on the Grand Master category and in the youths Daniel Trotter (GBR) leads.
Stuart Keegan leads the silver fleet and Patrick Harris (ESP) leads the bronze.
Tonight we have a paella night and the Australian fleet will make a presentation about the next Worlds to be held at Blairgowrie Yacht Squadron (Melbourne, Australia).
FULL RESULTS HERE >>>
FULL PHOTO GALLERY >>>