Annalise Murphy (file pic). David Jones
shipping up

Annalise Murphy storms up to fifth overall as Aoife Hopkins also qualifies for Gold Fleet

A strong Wednesday saw Murphy break into the top five overall, with Howth’s Hopkins joining her in the Gold Fleet.

ANNALISE MURPHY IS up to fifth place overall at the 2020 Laser Radial World Championships in Melbourne, and she’ll be joined in the Gold Fleet by compatriot Aoife Hopkins who sits 31st.

All six qualifying races have now been completed despite difficult midweek conditions in Melbourne, with Murphy battling thunder, lightning and large waves to win the third race of this year’s Worlds yesterday (Tuesday).

That moved the 2016 Olympic silver medallist into 21st overall, and ninth-, seventh-, and second-placed finishes in today’s qualifying races — combined with a discard (38th, first race) — have seen Murphy catapult herself into the top five.

The top 53 sailors qualify for the Gold Fleet, i.e. the narrowed-down contingent of competitors who aim to go on to compete for medals.

aoife-hopkins Aoife Hopkins (file pic). James Crombie / INPHO James Crombie / INPHO / INPHO

Howth sailor Hopkins was well above the cut in 31st, the former U21 European champion adding 20th-, 21st-, and 20th-placed finishes to her 10th and sixth place from yesterday’s races and discarding a first-race 45th.

Tipperary’s Aisling Keller was only four points off qualification for the Gold Fleet in 57th position overall, while prodigious fourth-year secondary school student Eve McMahon was 66th in a 105-boat field.

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