420/470 JUNIOR CHAMPIONSHIP PREVIEW AHEAD OF OPENING RACE DAY05 Jul 2018
Staged in the stunning Portuguese beach resort of Sesimbra, the 420/470 Junior European Championship features a line-up of 396 sailors from 20 nations.
Teams from across the world have gathered for six days of racing in the stake out for the annual Championship titles.
Hosted by Clube Naval de Sesimbra, the 420/470 Junior European Championship, 3-11 July 2018, comes to one of Portugal’s finest resort towns, famous for its pristine beach and coastline and fresh seafood.
Today the practice race gave teams a flavour of the week ahead, with racing scheduled to get underway at 1400 hours on Friday 6 July.
The 470 Men and 470 Women fleets will sail a series of 11 races, followed by a final race on 11 July for those not qualifying to the top ten, followed by the Medal Race podium decider for the leaders.
The 2017 470 Women silver and bronze medallists, Marina Lefort/Lara Granier (ITA) and Luise Wanser/Helena Wanser (GER), return for another shot at the podium, as well as ranking amongst the most experienced teams. Holding a world #23, the French pair is the highest world ranked team racing in Portugal, having shown their pedigree at the 470 Europeans and World Cup circuit this year. The frontrunners are joined by a host of younger teams, all capable of making their mark.
In the 470 Men, last year’s bronze medallists Maor Abu/Yoav Rooz (ISR) will be targeting an upgrade medal. But it won’t be easy, as they have to outsmart numerous talented teams who will be turning on the pressure. Amongst those to watch will be Hungarian brothers Balázs Gyapjas/Zsombor Gyapjas, who finished 15th at the 470 European Championship in May, and backed up that result with a 12th at the World Cup Final in Marseille last month. The Hungarians finished 4th at last year’s Junior Europeans, just ahead of Nitai Hasson/Tal Harari (ISR), who also return to the fray.
The host nation’s hopes will be on brothers Diogo Costa/Pedro Costa who just two years ago won the 420 Worlds. Super talented, they have what it takes and will inevitably be boosted by racing on home waters.
Competing in two fleets, the 420 Open (aged under 19 years) and the 420 U17, racing is set to be tight as the 420 Class’ leading sailors battle it out for one of four Championship crowns; 420 Junior European, 420 Women Junior European, 420 U17 Men and 420 U17 Women.
With nations limited by entry quotas, 7 in the Open and 3 in the U17, the race track features the very best teams from each nation. Host nation Portugal earns an increased quota and is fielding 14 entries in the Open and 6 in the U17,
The 420 Open sees men, women and mixed teams racing together in a fight for supremacy. Many of last year’s men’s teams have now advanced to senior fleet racing, leaving the running open for new names to make their mark. In the women, last year’s U17 champions Ariadni Spanaki/Myrto Papadopoulou have moved to the U19 fleet, as have bronze medallists Carlotta Scodnik/Camilla Scodnik - with both teams amongst the favourites for the women's medals.
Looking confident to retain their 420 U17 title is Italy’s Demetrio Sposato/Gabriele Centrone. Last year the duo also wrapped up the 420 U17 European title, and with another year of experience will be hard to overthrow.
On hand with expert insights will be renowned coach Nikos Drougkas (GRE), who will be on the water following the racing ahead of giving a daily post-race debrief and video analysis.
HOW TO FOLLOW
Follow the 420 and 470 Junior European Championships via our daily reports, photos, video and 420 Class Championship APP.
Championship Website: 2018junioreuropeans.420sailing.org
Photo Service – Daily photo galleries in high and low resolution and provided on a daily basis free of rights for editorial use only. Team photo requests for editorial use should be made to: firstname.lastname@example.org
All images used should include the official photograph credit as per the photo.
Championship APP - the 420 Class is running a a Championship APP for the 2018 420 Junior European Championships so you can keep up to date with all the racing action from your favourite sailors wherever you are
Video Images – daily videos will be produced for social media and websites, which will be available on the Championship website and 420 and 470 Class social media.
Social – you can follow the 420 and 470 Junior European Championships on:
Championship website - 2018junioreuropeans.420sailing.org
420 on Facebook - www.facebook.com/International420ClassAssociation
420 on Twitter - twitter.com/420class
420 on YouTube - https://www.youtube.com/Int420Dinghy
Get social using #420JuniorEuros #420Class
Writer: Luissa Smith