Kiwi parasailing team in 3rd at halfway mark Rio 2016

By Yachting NZ

New Zealands Parasailing Sonar team are back into 3rd overall after three races sailed today in Rio at the 2016 Paralympic Games with competition now passed the halfway mark.

Dodson, May and Sharp went 4, 6, 4 in the Sonar class racing today and are just three points behind USA, while the Aussies hold the lead.

Yesterday conditions in Rio were light and tricky, but today brought stronger breeze.

Dodson spoke after racing about the conditions and their performance; "We thought we were doing a smart thing we had light air sails on. Speed wise, I think were good."

"There were gusts of 25 knots - quite breezy, so were happy enough. We got two 4ths and a 6th so were happy."

"Were lying 3rd right now, which is a really good goal I think - to medal would be fantastic."

While the Australian team of Colin Harrison, Russell Boaden and Jonathan Harris have a five point leading margin, points on the leader-board are close through the top half of the 14 boat fleet and the remaining three days of the regatta will be crucial.

Talking about their team he said, "Ive been very lucky, and through my sailing all these years Ive done very well. These two guys - Chris Sharp and Andrew May - theyve been very good, so Im happy with our team. I think the whole team is good. I think thats what its all about, and we enjoy it, were having fun."

Yesterday Dodsons team-mate Chris Sharp spoke very passionately about the positive experience of competing in Rio at the Paralympic Games and today Dodson was asked if he felt the same way;

"Of course, because I have MS and Ive sailed Americas Cup and everything else, and I sort of think okay, Ive got MS and Im 55 years of age, and you know, Im getting a bit old. But now I can do it again with Parasailing and I enjoy it and I enjoy all the people that are involved with this - its a good bunch. Its really good."

Dodson knows that winning a medal in Rio would provide the platform to bring Parasailing into the spotlight in New Zealand.

"I really do want to get Parasailing up and running a bit better in New Zealand. I think we can do well, and everyone who has a problem with their ability to do things, you know they can get involved with parasailing - give it a go, its fun!"

Three days remain with two races per day for the next two, and one race on the last day.

Rio 2016 Paralympic Games

Sonar Event top five

1st AUS Colin Harrison, Russell Boaden and Jonathan Harris - 12 points

2nd USA Alphonsus Doerr, Hugh Freund and Bradley Kendell -18 points

3rd NZL Richard Dodson, Andrew May and Chris Sharp - 21 points

4th NOR Aleksander Wang-Hansen, Marie Solberg and Per Eugen Kristiansen - 22 points

5th GBR John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Steve Thomas - 23 points

Full results here: http://www.sailing.org/paralympics/rio2016/results/index.php

Rio 2016 Sonar Schedule

Monday 12 Sept - 2 races

Tuesday 13 Sept - 2 races

Wednesday 14 Sept - 2 races

Thursday 15 Sept - 2 races

Friday 16 Sept - 2 races

Saturday 17 Sept - 1 race

More here: http://www.sailing.org/paralympics/rio2016

- This story has been automatically published using a media release from Yachting New Zealand

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