After three days and nine regattas, the qualifying phase ended on Tuesday in Lanzarote, a prestigious competition on the sailing calendar and, this year, qualifying for the Tokyo Games with the award of the last European ticket. After Emma Plasschaert in Laser Radial, Yannick Lefèbvre and Tom Pelsmaekers, in 49er, as well as Anouk Geurts and Isaura Maenhaut, in 49erFX, hope to win their Olympic selection there.
At the end of the first phase, 25 crews out of forty in each class are authorized to continue the adventure during the final series (also over three days), before the famous Medal Race, during which the medals are traditionally distributed. And the Belgians have taken this step, ranking 9th and 8th respectively in the general classification, but 2nd in the Olympic race.
Our male duo, composed of Yannick Lefèbvre and Tom Pelsmaekers (already present in 2016, in Rio, where they placed 17th), point to 9th place, with 56 points, of a classification now led by a Spanish tandem, with only 18 points, this total being the sum of the results recorded in the nine regattas, i.e. 5th, 5th, 2nd, 7th, 1st, 2nd, 1st, 1st, 1st. But Spain has already qualified for the Tokyo Games! And, in this famous Olympic race, Belgium is preceded only by Ireland, 3rd, with 31 points.
Same scenario for our female duo: Anouk Geurts and Isaura Maenhaut are currently 8th overall, with 44 points, in a ranking led by… Brazil, with 25 points. And, in the Olympic race, Belgium (first after two days!) Is only ahead of Croatia, 7th, with 42 points. The fight will therefore be particularly close, but quite possible for the two Belgian crews.
To be continued, we hope, until Friday evening with a happy ending …