Glorious weather on day 4 of the Soling European Championship at the Müggelsee. The penultimate day was sunny and there were 7-11 bft winds from 200-225° – everything a sailor’s heart could wish for.
The ever growing number of spectating boats could witness fantastic sailing. Many spectators are former active members of the Soling class like first European Champions of the Olympic Soling era Roland Schwarz, Werner Christoph and Lothar Koepsell. The olympic bronze medallists of 1976 in Klingston (Canada) Dieter Below, Olaf Engelhardt and Michael Zachries were also present – as well as former DSV president Rolf Bähr whos participation in the Olympics 1980 with Willy Kuhweide was prevented by the Olympic boycott of the federal republic. All of them watched as Schümann and crew as well as Hungarian World Champions Litkey,Vezer and Oroszian turned the penultimate day of the competition into the determining day.
Because of a very well executed leeward start by Schümann, Flach and Borkowski their overall sixth win in the first race of the day was already evident right after starting. Even Jochen‘s precisely observing former trainer Bernd Dehmel who was buoy tender at the start was awestruck.
With a little distance, maybe as a mark of respect for the now nine times European Champion, the significantly younger Hungarian World Champions came in second. Therefore the gold and silver medals of the event were assigned for after the first race of the day.
Ukrainians Yushko, Pichugin and Severianov impressively showed their aim for the bronze rank with a fourth place. The second race of the day generated another win by Schümann. The results before the last race on Saturday: Schümann 7 points, Litkey 18 points, Yusko 31 points – the podium places seem settled. But HUN 1 (helm Sandor Vargas), GER 25 (Henrik Witzmann, Markus Koy, and Knut Seelig), GER 308 (Bavarians “Burschi” Karl Haist, Martin Zelleis and Irene Haist), GER 1 (Roman Koch, Robert Morris and Thomas Olbrich) and defending champions GER 323 (Uwe Steingroß, Karsten Eller and Tim Gieseke) now have 41, 45 or 47 points each. Thus the fight for the so called “wood medal” on rank four stays exciting.
Klaus Müller / Wiebke Lechler