470 Masters made their final preparations yesterday during a practice race in promising conditions. In the early afternoon, the registration list showed 42 teams from ten countries.
At the slipway of the Regatta Center, sailors who challenged the 470 Worlds Title in the past meet again. A Master Frenchman approaches a Dutch Master: "Don't I know you? We competed more often in the late seventies".
Many 470 Master sailors take the opportunity to form a team with old or new friends, husband or wife, son or daughter, just to be part of the annual 470 Masters Cup festival. Frenchman and Grand Master Alain BLANCHARD whose crew is injured would not take any chance to miss the event. "I will just come to Medemblik and find my crew there"
he said full of enthusiasm.
At the Regatta Center, a TV set shows the latest news of the Games in Athens. The Olympics are very well alive at Medemblik in a perfect atmosphere.
As the clock ticks closer towards the first start tomorrow, the feeling of competition gets stronger.
Frenchmen Bernard BOIME and Gilles ESPINASSE are silently mentioned as favourites for this year's 470 Masters Cup Challenge. They won the Cup twice in the past. Nevertheless, there are a lot of strong sailors who have good chances.
Ten races are scheduled during four days, with lots of social activity in the evening hours. The first start is scheduled for 12:00 Tuesday 17 August.