Spanish Telefonica Blue crew-member Jordi CALAFAT (ESP), who won gold in the 470 in Barcelona, also has two Youth World Silver medals and is sailing the next leg of the Volvo Ocean Race. He recalls how sailing in the Youth Worlds has helped him. "It was a great event because we all sailed the same boats, with the same sails and against the best youth sailors. A lot of them have gone onto sailing in the America's Cup, Olympics and the Volvo Ocean Race. I think it really helps you deal with the pressure as it is such a similar format to Olympic sailing, with at least eight races. You have to grow up as a sailor. You need to work hard and race your best and try not to concentrate on the pressure and just enjoy yourself."
Bruno MARQUES, chairman of the Organizing Committee for the championship said, "I am delighted to announce a massive entry for this year's championship and we are all excited to be welcoming 59 nations and 280 sailors to Brazil. In Buzios we are incredibly proud to be the first venue in South America to host the Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship and it is great to see nations have responded so positively by sending their sailors to compete here in July. With so many talented young sailors set to attend I am certain we will get our first glimpse of some future stars of our sport."
Racing at the 2009 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship will be held across seven events and, with 59 nations and 280 sailors registered for entry, it is set to be the second biggest edition of the championship (283 sailors from 63 nations competed at Weymouth and Portland, Great Britain in 2006). Sailors will be travelling from all over the world to compete in Brazil with every continent represented. Unsurprisingly the entry from Central and South America is the biggest ever at the Youth Worlds: Argentina, Brazil, Chile, Ecuador, Mexico, Paraguay, Peru, Uruguay and Venezuela are all set to be represented.
Buzios has already set one new record, as the first edition of the championship to exceed 50 entries in one event. The Boy's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial event has attracted entries from 51 nations, which will make it the biggest fleet ever in the 39-year history of the Youth Worlds.
Fiona KIDD (CAN), chairman of the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship Sub-committee, said: "The Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship continues to go from strength to strength and for the fourth year in a row we have attracted over 50 nations to take part. Thanks to the support of Volvo, our title sponsor, together with port sponsors and the equipment suppliers, we can continue to build on the successes of past editions. We are especially delighted to be welcoming Botswana and Nigeria to the championship for the first time. The Youth Worlds is a proven breeding ground for sailing champions and as we see more and more nations and sailors compete, we are opening the door to many more future stars of our sport."
Brazil is a nation of great sailing tradition and has produced some of the sport's biggest stars. Brazilian Torben GRAEL is the only sailor to win five Olympic medals and whether it be in small-boat sailing, the America's Cup, or ocean racing, he has left a trail of success in his wake. He led the Brasil 1 entry to third place in the 2005-06 edition of the Volvo Ocean Race and is on course for even greater success this time around. As the skipper of the all-star international crew of Ericsson 4, which includes 1989 Youth Worlds gold medallist Stuart BANNATYNE (NZL) as watch captain, GRAEL currently tops the race leaderboard as he and his crew prepare to depart on leg six from Rio to Boston this weekend.
2009 Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship - Quick Stats
Venue: Armação de Buzios, Brazil
Dates: 9-18 July
Entry: 280 sailors from 59 nations
Event - Equipment - Entries
Boy's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial - 51 entries
Girl's One Person Dinghy - Laser Radial - 38 entries
Boy's Two Person Dinghy - 420 - 33 entries (66 sailors)
Girl's Two Person Dinghy - 420 - 25 entries (50 sailors)
Boy's Windsurfer - RS:X with 8.5m2 sail & 60cm fin - 24 entries
Girl's Windsurfer - RS:X with 8.5m2 sail & 60cm fin - 15 entries
Open Multihull - Hobie 16 with Spinnaker - 18 entries (36 sailors)
British Virgin Islands
US Virgin Islands
Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship microsite - www.sailing.org/youthworlds
Volvo Youth Sailing ISAF World Championship 2009 - www.youthworlds2009.org
Volvo Ocean Race - www.volvooceanrace.org