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Meech wins New Zealand's third medal at Enoshima World Cup

Sam Meech admits he sailed pretty poorly this week which makes the fact he still walked away with a bronze medal at the World Cup regatta in Enoshima today all the more impressive.

It meant New Zealand won three medals at the venue for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics after Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn in the 49er and Alex Maloney and Molly Meech in the 49erFX both picked up silvers yesterday.

Andy Maloney (fifth) and Josh Junior (sixth) were foiled in their attempts to jump onto the podium in the Finn after their medal race was cancelled due to a lack of wind.

It took a long time for the breeze to play ball at Enoshima today, meaning a lengthy delay to the start of the Laser race, and when it finally arrived it was light and shifty.

Initially it looked like New Zealand's Tom Saunders, who started the day in second, would prosper. He led at the first mark only for the wind to shift and favour the other side of the course and he slipped to the back of the fleet and finished sixth overall.

Meech, who started the day in fifth, managed to hook into the extra pressure and his fourth place in the medal race was enough to propel him into the medals. Great Britain's Elliott Hansen had already wrapped up gold before the race and Australia's Matthew Wearn was second.

"It's fantastic," Meech said. "In the past when I haven't sailed well I have been at the back of the fleet. It's nice to have a bad week and still pick up a medal at the end of the week.

"But I think a lot of guys were like me and took a little bit of time off after the world championships so not many were really on form. But to come away with a medal, I'm pretty happy with that."

It rounds out a very successful past 12 months on the international circuit for Meech, who won his first World Cup title in Gamagori late last year and backed it up with silver medals at the Hyeres World Cup, Princess Sofia regatta in Palma and the Laser Europeans in La Rochelle. He also led for a few days at last month's world championships before having to settle for fourth.

His main target, however, is the 2020 Tokyo Olympics and one of the main aims of this regatta was trying to better understand the Olympic venue. But the 27-year-old admits he was left scratching his head at times this week given the predominance of tricky offshore winds and feels he's still some way from getting a handle on the venue.

"It hasn't really felt like that this week," he said. "The training we had leading into the regatta was totally different to the conditions we had this week, with the wind coming from the other direction. It was some of the best sailing that I've ever done."

Meech will now return home for a break and to do some sailing in other boats but a number of New Zealanders will remain in Japan for another regatta, Enoshima Olympic Week, starting in a few days' time.

Results and standings after the final day of the World Cup regatta in Enoshima, Japan, today:

Laser (59 boats)

1st: Elliot Hanson (GBR) 11 6 14 1 3 6 (17) 5 1 12 - 59 points
2nd: Matthew Wearn (AUS) 3 12 25 4 19 5 6 19 (27) 4 - 97 pts
3rd: Sam Meech (NZL) 4 (35) 17 2 6 19 7 18 25 8 - 106 pts

6th: Tom Saunders (NZL) 15 18 8 3 8 22 1 15 (28) 20 - 110pts
18th: George Gautrey (NZL) 5 36 11 (60 BFD) 16 9 42 10 32 - 161 pts

Laser Radial (53 boats)

1st: Marit Bouwmeester (NED) 2 (23) 4 5 9 6 2 2 - 30 pts
2nd: Josefin Olsson (SWE) 15 1 10 2 17 2 (28) 4 - 51 pts
3rd: Emma Plasschaert (BEL) 5 3 14 (15) 8 5 14 8 - 57 pts

31st: Olivia Christie (NZL) 25 4 21 (45) 44 35 31 - 160 pts

Nacra 17 (25 boats)

1st: Jason Waterhouse / Lisa Darmanin (AUS) 6 5 3 5 3 2 (8) 1 7 2 - 34 pts
2nd: Ruggero Tita / Caterina Marianna Banti (ITA) 1 1 1 1 1 (12) 4 6 12 9 - 35 pts
3rd: Vittorio Bissaro / Maelle Frascari (ITA) (11) 2 2 2 7 3 9 5 8 4 - 42pts

6th: Gemma Jones / Jason Saunders (NZL) 2 3 10 3 (26 DSQ) 10 12 3 5 20 - 68 pts

Finn (21 boats)

1st: Nicholas Heiner (NED) 5.4 DPI 6.4 DPI 1 (8) 4 4 3 7 2 - 32.8 pts
2nd: Giles Scott (GBR) 6 1 2 6 (10) 2 9 5 5 - 36 pts
3rd: Edward Wright (GBR) 7 3 4 (9) 3 6 4 2 8 - 37 pts

5th: Andy Maloney (NZL) (14) 8 12 7 9 1 5 1 6 - 49 pts
6th: Josh Junior (NZL) 2 6 8 3 6 10 7 12 (18) - 54 pts

49er (27 boats)

1st: James Peters / Fynn Sterritt (GBR) 4 3 5 1 7 8 (17) 9 15 2 - 54 pts
2nd: Logan Dunning Beck / Oscar Gunn (NZL) 3 5 8 6 9 17 5 (22) 3 16 - 72 pts
3rd: Lukasz Przybytek / Pawel Kolodzinski (POL) 2 8 3 17 5 (23) 4 5 8 20 - 72 pts

13th: Josh Porebski / Trent Rippey (NZL) 19 22 2 10 13 5 9 (25) 14 - 94 pts
18th: Isaac McHardie / William McKenzie (NZL) 21 6 20 14 (24) 9 10 8 13 - 101 pts

49erFX (24 boats)

1st: Martine Soffiatti Grael / Kahena Kunze (BRA) 1 5 2 1 1 (13) 1 8 - 19 pts
2nd: Alex Maloney / Molly Meech (NZL) 19 3 1 2 4 12 (24) 4 - 45 pts
3rd: Klara Wester / Rebecca Netzletr (SWE) 5 (25 UFD) 12 6 8 8 3 6 - 48 pts

Men's 470 (32 boats)

1st: Keiju Okada / Jumpei Hokazono (JPN) 5 2 1 2 12 2 (16) 8 - 32 pts
2nd: Mathew Belcher / William Ryan (AUS) 3 (15) 5 1 11 5 5 10 - 40 pts
3rd: Daichi Takayama / Kimihiko Imamura (JPN) 7 9 6 5 2 (13) 10 4 - 43 pts

28th: Paul Snow-Hansen / Daniel Willcox (NZL) 19 32 14 18 26 19 (33 RET) 14 - 142 pts

Women's 470 (23 boats)

1st: Afrodite Kyranakou / Anneloes van Veen (NED) 2 5 6 2 6 (8) 3 5 - 29 pts
2nd: Ai Kondo Yoshida / Miho Yoshioka (JPN) 11 1 2 11 (12) 4 2 2 - 33 pts
3rd: Benedetta di Salle / Alessandra Dubbini (ITA) 5 2 7 (13) 5 2 10 3 - 34 pts

22nd: Courtney Reynolds-Smith / Brianna Reynolds-Smith (NZL) 21 20 20 (23) 19 20 - 141 pts

Men's RS:X (40 boards)

1st: Kiran Badloe (NED) 3 2 8 2 4 11 (17) 4 4 - 37 pts
2nd: Mateo Sanz Lanz (SUI) 9 (20) 12 1 7 4 1 9 8 - 51 pts
3rd: Pierre le Coq (FRA) 10 3 4 3 9 (41 UFD) 8 7 10 - 54 pts

Women's RS:X (30 boards)

1st: Peina Chen (CHN) 1 3 10 3 8 4 1 (13) 4 - 34 pts
2nd: Lilian de Geus (NED) (21) 1 1 10 15 1 8 3 6 - 45 pts
3rd: Yunxiu Lu (CHN) 2 5 4 (17) 1 2 17 14 2 - 47 pts

Full results here


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