Olympic showcase at the 470 Europeans

Published on May 7th, 2019

An exceptional line-up is in the queue for the 470 European Championship on May 9 to 14 in Marina degli Aregai, Italy. Viewed within the Olympic class as the ‘other world championship’, the event boats a truly world class line-up with several teams coming from countries outside of Europe.

Teams from China, Japan, New Zealand, Australia, the USA, Argentina, and Brazil, along with newcomers from Malesia and India, account for the 29 countries entered.

Representing North America are three teams from the USA: Stuart McNay and David Hughes, Nikole Barnes and Lara Dallman-Weiss, and Atlantic Brugman Cabot and Nora Brugman Cabot.

The championship is open to non-Europeans crews, who can use it as a qualifying event for the Tokyo 2020 Olympics, but cannot compete for the title. Fleets will be split in two groups: one for women and one for men or the newly introduced mixed crews. In total more than 115 teams have confirmed their presence.

The 470 Europeans consist of a series of fleet races and a final medal race, if more than five qualifying races have been completed, for the top 10 teams in each fleet. The racing will be on windward/leeward or trapezoid courses.

The Championship will open on Monday May 6, with teams finalizing entries and measurements through to Tuesday 7, when the official opening ceremony will take place in the late afternoon in the Marina degli Aregai. Racing is planned from Wednesday 8 to Tuesday 14, with the medal races and the closing ceremony.

Among the top guns of the class participating are two times world champion and Olympic silver medalist Mathew Belcher from Australia teaming with Will Ryan; New Zelanders Paul Snow-Hansen and Daniel Willcox, fresh from winning the World Cup Series Genoa; Mcnay and Hughes from the USA, and the Europeans Luke Patience and Chris Grube from the UK, Spain’s Jordi Xammar and Nicolas Rodriguez, Italy’s Matteo Capurro and Matteo Puppo, and Giacomo Ferrari and Giulio Calabrò.

All in all the first 15 teams of the world ranking will be racing in Aregai.

Dutch team Afrodite Zegers and Lobke Berkhout, China’s Manxi Wei and Haiyan Gao, third in the world ranking and runners-up in Genoa right one spot in front of young Italians Benedetta Di Salle and Alessandra Dubbini, will be the teams to look out for among the girls.

Reigning Olympic champion Hannah Mills and crew Eilidh McIntyre will also look to seal their second consecutive major regatta win after their recent victory at the Princess Sofia Trophy regatta in Palma, Mallorca.

The 470 is Olympic class since the 1976 Montreal Games when only one fleet was allowed, a male and female fleet were introduced later in 1988, and the boat is currently sailed in more than 60 countries worldwide. In the nine editions of the Games the boat has been used 18 nations have won a medal, vouching for its diffusion and success.

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Source: Carla Anselmi

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