China’s Peina Chen dominated the opening day of the RS:X World Windsurfing Championships in Mussanah, Oman, winning all three of the women’s fleet races.
The 26-year-old, second at last month’s International Sailing Federation (ISAF) Sailing World Cup in Chinese city Quingdao, was particularly impressive in her last outing as she triumphed by 66 seconds.
Chen goes into day two with a three-point lead over world number one and Beijing 2008 Olympic bronze medallist Bryony Shaw of Great Britain, while Poland’s Malgorzata Bialecka is in third with 10 points.
"My increased fitness and my ability to sustain the pumping played a big part," Chen told the Times of Oman.
"Also, I have spent the last two weeks here in Oman training so I am familiar with the conditions, including the hot air.
"It is a great venue for this sort of event because everything is so convenient and easy and the sailing conditions are superb."
Meanwhile in the men's event, France’s Pierre Le Coq is the overnight leader after finishing the day with two first-place finishes and a runners-up spot in a nine to 10 knot breeze.
Le Coq is two points ahead of Poland’s Piotr Myszka, who occupies second place, while Switzerland’s Mateo Sanz Lanz is in third.
"I was happy that I managed to be quite fast upwind, and downwind I sailed deep," said Le Coq.
"Also it was the conditions I like, so I felt very comfortable.
"Getting a good start was very important today.
"I opted for the middle and it seemed to work."
Racing is due to continue tomorrow with three more qualifying races for both fleets.
Following the final qualifying race, competitors will discard their worst score and then divided into gold and silver fleets in accordance with their overall positions.
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