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Competition/FW YMW Europeans 15


8th to 13th September 2015
Nea Makri, Marathon Bay, Greece






Final Podium Positions Depend on the Last Race in Marathon Bay

As the competitors arrived at the race site Aeolus greeted us with solid 22 knots gusting to 25, from the NNE.  Already tired after the previous day of racing, the mood in the rigging area was one of quiet concentration, as the forecast was for serious wind all day.

The race officer brought the course as close into the beach as possible, providing less chop and waves for us to deal with. This was a great help, however, many locals who were out for their Sunday afternoon swim were a little shocked as the whole fleet charged upwind to within meters of the beach looking for the best lay line to tack on.

Race 12, 1st LAT-23, 2nd FRA-1642, 3rd GRE-28. Edwy FRA-1642, was determined to continue his push for the podium after his good performance yesterday.  2nd in the first of the day a good start.

Race 13, 1st LAT-23, 2nd EST-347, 3rd EST-228, Janis continuing to be in a class of his own. And race 13 again showing the potential of the youth stars from Estonia with a 2nd, 3rd finish.

Race 14, was where things got interesting. LAT-23 blew the top out of his sail, and was forced to retire from the race. Right on his heels waiting to take advantage was FRA-1642 who recorded his first bullet of the championship. Into 2nd place and recording his best result of the championship so far, was GRE-19 Vassilis Solidakis. And into 3rd place GRE-28 who from early in the morning knew that any mistakes today could cost him 2nd in the overall.

Race ......15. The last and final race of the championship, and 2nd and 3rd in the overall was still in the balance. If FRA-55 was to win the last and final race, and GRE-28 was to finish 3 or more places behind, then they would change places on the podium. With LAT-23 missing from proceedings, FRA-55 managed to cross the finish line first with GRE-28 in second. However FRA-55 was deemed to be OCS which handed the last bullet of the event to Nicolaos Skarlatos. Into second in the last race and a great finish to the event GRE-19, and 3rd FRA-1642 who capped off a great day.

A massive congratulations to the organizers, FWA of Greece. And in particular Nikolaos Kampouropoulos, and Christian Frey who have worked endlessly to make this event happen. Thanks to our race officer and his team for a great event in difficult conditions. And a huge thanks to all the competitors who travelled here to Greece for these championships. Without you, this event would never have been such a success.

Good winds to all, we look forward to welcoming you all here at the Golden Coast Hotel next year for the 2016 Youth and Masters World Championships.


Day 4, Aeolus, the Ancient Greek god of the wind, returned to the race area providing conditions of 14-20 knots for 4 races to be completed.

Race 8, The north east thermal kicked in early in the morning.  Unfortunately, close to the beach it was shifting quite a bit to the west with massive holes of no wind. The race officer decided to move the course a LONG way off shore where the fresh thermal was stable in both direction and strength. Reports from the start boat said about 14 knots, so quite a few guys rigged 12+m and chugged out to the course. Most of the fleet not even planning to get to the start line. Once we had all made it to the race area Aeolus flicked the switch on the turbines and we were suddenly in 18+ knots with waves?
Taking his first bullet of the regatta was an ecstatic GRE-28, 2nd LAT-23, 3rd FRA-55.

Race 9, After the mayhem of whole fleet being on overpowered gear for race 8, the race officer sent us back to the beach and gave us time to change our equipment. He took this time to relocate the course back in its usual spot closer to the shore. Back out in now solid 16-20knots and race 9 showed us the strength of the "French connection" 1st LAT-23, 2nd FRA-55, 3rd FRA-1642.

Race 10, Wind still 16-20 knots, into 1st no surprises, LAT-23 who has really given a master class in Formula, showing us why he is number one. 2nd, the youth star EST-347 who now moves into the lead for the overall youth title ahead of his teammate EST-228. 3rd, having a fine day so far FRA-1642.

Race 11, after a break for lunch we had time for one last race. Winds dropping to about 14-18 knots. 1st LAT-23, 2nd & 3rd, team France, with FRA-55 & FRA-1642. Great day for Edwy, placing 3rd in three of today's races.

Update on the overall youth standings. Currently leading after 11 races is EST-347, 2nd EST-228, 3rd GRE-281. And a quick mention for our youngest and smallest Youth competitor, GRE-2002, he is racing in his first formula event, is 13 years old, weighs 45 kg, and has managed to complete all but the last race so far. Well done!!!

A windy day today, more wind forecast for the last day of this year's event.

Stay tuned.

Day 3 here in Greece.

Very hot and very humid in the morning, with a dead calm sea. The waiting game . . .

Walking through the rigging area, was interesting seeing how everyone passed the time differently. Some guys found some shade and slept. Others, slapped the headphones on and kicked back with some tunes. The sound of a small saw cutting a batten, a group of guys all standing watchful eye over his efforts. Another guy, sanding back some quick repairs to his board. A group of riders, gathered in the shade under one of the big trees, having a "formula conference" all giving different opinions on trim and "go fast" techniques. Was cool to see all the riders from the different countries talking together, sharing ideas, and hanging out.

This rest day also allowed us to take a camera around to most of the competitors, to get a few interviews. Not only with the top guys, but we wanted to give a face and sound to all the names on the entry list. It was fun getting each of the riders to introduce themselves and say a few words about the racing and the location. Some were really camera shy, others are clearly ready for a Hollywood film contract. The wrap up video at the end of the event will be fun to watch.

With a small puff of about 5-9 knots, slowly creasing the dead calm in the race area, we were sent to the water in the hope of getting a race done. No luck with the wind gods today. Many of the guys (heavier riders ;-b) didn't even leave the beach. After what seemed like an eternity, the race committee, sent us back to the beach and called off racing for the day early. A few more video interviews, then ICE cold beers to close day 3.

Day 2 report

Day 2 provided 4 races in winds of 14 to 18 knots. The south east direction proved to be a little more tricky to pick the shifts compared to the first day of stable thermal north east wind.

3 races back to back to start the day, as this wind direction is notorious for dropping off quite quickly in the afternoon. With the course being an easy reach from the beach, most competitors were able to have a short rest between the first 3 races. An hour for lunch, then back out on the water for the last race of the day.

Race 4, no surprises here as the first 3 were exactly as the first day - LAT-23, GRE-28, FRA-55

Race 5, saw LAT-23 1st again, yet FRA-55 managed to get the better of GRE-28, with them finishing 2nd and 3rd respectively.

Race 6 was the big surprise of the day. Some start line traffic, and a pile up or two seemed to break the rhythm of the top three sailors. Showing phenomenal potential for the future, race 6 belonged to the youth stars. EST-347 Tristan Kivi, took his chance firmly in both hands and recorded the "golden bullet" breaking Janis's perfect  record. Janis maybe needed the course to be a few meters longer, but had to settle for 2nd on this occasion. 3rd was EST-228 Karl Saarm, who is leading the race for the youth title after the 2nd day.

With the two youth sailors placing 1st and 3rd, the future of Formula is certainly looking very bright. After the excitement of race 6, race 7 was business as usual. With the top 3 sailors of the regatta so far, stamping their authority on the top spots. LAT-23, GRE-28, FRA-55 = 1,2,3.

So a full day of racing completed on day 2, forecast not looking super for tomorrow, but here in the land of the gods, anything is possible. Let's see what day three has in store.

More from Greece tomorrow.

Day 1 report

Day 1, A great start to the event. With three races completed. The first two races were run back to back. Race 1 was completed in about 10 to 14 knots. Most sailors chose to race on 11m as the forecast was for the wind to increase to about 20 knots. For race 2, the wind increased to about 18knots. Conditions were great, however the cloud cover suffocated the forecasted thermal which would have seen us racing in over 25 knots. Wind direction was quite stable, however port tack upwind runs were quite bumpy with some decent short steep voodoo chop to make things interesting.

After the second race, we were sent to the beach for lunch. During the break, a problem with the start boat had us waiting longer than expected to restart the racing. However. All the sailors were very good about the delay, and the mood on the beach was cool and calm. (Thanks for your understanding guys)

Once the boat was back in order, we had time for one last race. The wind strength however was getting lighter by the minute. The first half of the fleet managed to complete race three in super light winds. The second half of the fleet were floating off the plane for long periods of time, however a short puff of breeze came through and allowed most to finish inside the cutoff time.

Congratulations to our leaders LAT-23 Janis Preiss with three bullets. GRE-28 Nikolaos Scarlatos is in super form with three solid 2nds. And in third after 3 FRA-55 Loic Legallois with two 3rds and a 4th.

More from Greece tomorrow.


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