Men's 470 team and Caleb Paine win medal races at Sailing World Cup Hyeres
The Sailing World Cup Hyeres took place April 27-May 1 in Hyeres, France. The U.S. Olympic sailing team contested seven of the 10 events that will be featured at the Olympics (men's and women's 470, men's and women's RS:X, men's Finn, men's 49er and mixed Nacra 17).
Paige Railey (Laser Radial), Charlie Buckingham (Laser) Paris Henken and Helena Scutt (49erFX) did not compete at the event.
This World Cup proved to be a success for two boats: the men's 470 boat of Stu McNay, and Dave Hughes and Caleb Paine sailing in the Finn class.
McNay and Hughes took charge in the medal race and claimed victory, They have been successful in many international events as of late, winning gold at the 2016 Sailing World Cup Miami and bronze at the 2016 470 European Championships.
"Our goal is just to employ the best strategy in the ten-boat fleet," McNay, who will participate in his third Olympic Games in August, told U.S. Sailing. He also noted that winning medal races requires strategy and anticipation of your competitor's behavior. "You want to anticipate the motivations and behavior of other boats, and use that knowledge to gauge your best response. Anything you can think about prior to the race will give you the upper hand."
McNay and Hughes finished fifth overall in Hyeres.
Paine sailed tremendously in Hyeres, reaching as high as second overall in the regatta. However, various races didn't go his way, and although Paine fell in the standings, he remained in the top ten throughout the event.
These races serve as great training for what's to come in Rio. Paine, who won the medal race, noted that these conditions might be what to expect in Rio.
"It's good to stay adaptive and be ready for anything out there on the racecourse," Paine told U.S. Sailing. "There are definitely some areas I'd like to improve. [But] all in all, on a couple days, I was totally together, and my results showed that." Paine finished eighth overall.
Below are the final standings of the other U.S. Olympic classes that sailed at Hyeres.
Bora Gulari and Louisa Chafee - 15th overall
Marion Lepert - 19th overall
Pedro Pascual - 38th overall
Thomas Barrows and Joe Morris - 31st overall