On Her Best Olympic Day Yet, Israeli Windsurfer Katy Spychakov Lost Her Chance for a Medal

Two first place finishes and one third weren't enough for the Israeli to make up the gap between her and the top three competitors

Itamar Katzir
Itamar Katzir
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Israeli windsurfer Katy Spychakov competeing at the Tokyo Olympics, on Thursday.
Israeli windsurfer Katy Spychakov competeing at the Tokyo Olympics, on Thursday.Credit: CARLOS BARRIA/ REUTERS
Itamar Katzir
Itamar Katzir

Windsurfer Katy Spychakov may have had an exceptional day, as she finished first in two of the day’s races and third in another, but she lost any chance of winning a medal at the Tokyo Games. She is now ranked in sixth place with 65 points (the fewer points the better), while France’s Charline Picon is in third place with only 35 points after the qualifying races in the Women’s RS:X solo windsurfer event.

In the medal race scheduled for Saturday, the points awarded will double, i.e., the winner will get two “negative” points, second place will receive four, and so on. But because only 10 competitors will participate in the medal round Spychakov will be unable to catch up and win a medal, as not enough negative points can be received by those ahead of her. The best she can get is a fourth place finish.

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She has consistently been one of the best women’s windsurfers in the world, but on Wednesday she had a particularly weak day, and it cost her a medal.

She still had a chance earlier in the day, as she finished first in the first race of the day and third in the following one. This put her in sixth place overall, and the gap between her and Picon narrowed to only 26 points before the last race of the day.

Spychakov arrived at the Olympics as one of the most likely Israeli candidates for a medal. She won the silver medal twice at the World Championships, in 2019 and 2021, and also won a bronze medal at the Olympic sailing venue during the pre-Olympic competition. 

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