By Michael Pavitt

Bruno Fontes overcame the weather conditions to lead the Laser class ©ISAFChanging weather conditions posed a problem for competitors on the first day of racing at the International Sailing Federation (ISAF) World Cup, in Miami, with 856 sailors competing across 10 Olympic and three Paralympic events.

With the weather alternating between bright sunshine and wind and rain, the sailors had to brace themselves for tricky conditions and in the laser class Brazil's Bruno Fontes coped best, topping the leader board after the two races ahead of countryman, two-time Olympic gold medallist Robert Scheidt.

The men and women's 470 class saw Great Britain's sailors come to the fore, with Luke Patience and Eliot Willis topping the standings in the men's race finishing first and second in the two races.

British teams claimed a race apiece in the women's event, but trail London 2012 gold medallists New Zealand's Jo Aleh and Polly Powrie in the overall competition, as the pair earned two second place finishes.

In the RS:X classes the inaugural ISAF World Cup Final winner Louis Giard, from France, showed his ability as he took the lead in the week-long event.

But, in the women's competition, youth claimed an early advantage as home favourite Marion Lepert leads the way and will hope to maintain a similar level of performance as the week progresses, against a highly competitive field.

Luke Patience and Eliot Willis lead the men's 470 class on a good day for British sailors ©ISAFLuke Patience and Eliot Willis lead the men's 470 class on a good day for British sailors ©ISAF

As conditions continued to prove difficult, 26 of the 49-boat Nacra 17 class were either unable to complete the second race or did not participate, but Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders of New Zealand embraced the challenge and have the advantage after three races.

Similarly the 49erFX sailors suffered from the weather, with only eight of the 40 teams able to complete the only race of the day in the class and another New Zealand pairing of Alex Maloney and Molly Meech took the win, comfortably beating second place Nina Keizer and Claire Blom of The Netherlands by over a minute.

Spanish pairing Diego Botin and Iago Lopez enjoyed first-day domination in the 49er class, claiming two first and one second place finishes from three races to lead the standings, while Britain's Giles Scott took a grip of the Finn, winning both races in the class.

British success continued in the Paralympic events, as John Robertson, Hannah Stodel and Stever Thomas replicated the Scott's performance in the Sonar, winning and dominating the opening races to lead the pack, while another British sailor Alison Young took both races to move to the top of the standings in the women's laser radial.

Canada's pairing John McRoberts and Jackie Gay of Canada lead in the SKUD18, with a second and a first place from their races.

Racing is set to continue in Miami at 10am local time tomorrow. 

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