Sailing: Kiwis miss out on medals at world championships

josh junior
Josh Junior fell victim to a countback in his race in Aarhus. Photo credit: Photosport

It's been a tough day for New Zealand at the sailing world championships in Denmark, with Josh Junior missing a medal on countback in the Finn class, after finishing fourth in the medal race.

The 28-year-old finished level on 76 points with Pieter-Jan Postma, but the Dutchman secured bronze by finishing ahead of Junior in the medal race.

Postma crossed the line in fourth in the main race, while Junior was eighth.

It was a crushing result for the Wellington sailor, as he was sitting atop the leaderboard heading into Thursday's (NZ time) race, which was struck by a massive squall that caused chaos in the fleet.

Junior was one of a handful to capsize, and saw his lead evaporate in a barrage of wind and rain.

"It was always going to be a close one, with six of us pretty much tied on points," he said.

"When it's like that, it takes a bit of luck. I sailed a good race to finish fourth, but not enough to get a medal, so I'm a bit gutted."

Andy Maloney finished 10th in the medal race and 10th overall.

There was also drama in Sam Meech's race, after he was disqualified for an incident with Elliot Hanson on the final downwind leg.

Meech was deemed to have not given Hanson enough room after establishing an overlap and as a result, he has relegated to fifth overall, 15 points off third place.

"I was trying to move forward in the fleet and he was really trying to hold me back pretty much the whole race," said Meech.

"Not only was I back in the pack trying to catch up, but I also had someone trying to stop me. It was a really difficult race.

"It's been a regatta of two halves for me. The first half, I felt like I was getting it all right and the second half, I feel like I haven't got anything right."

Things also didn't go right for Alex Maloney and Molly Meech either, with the Olympic silver medallists struggling all week.

But the pair have qualified ninth for the 49erFX medal race and done enough to qualify for the 2020 Tokyo Olympics.

Logan Dunning Beck and Oscar Gunn lost some ground in the 49er class and are now sixth, after starting the day in second.

Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders also won the last race of the day in the Nacra 17 and are now 14th, with one more day before the medal race.

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