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10 April 2007, 01:27 pm
Optimists Kick Into Action In Roelofarendsveen
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Magic Marine Optimist Easter Regatta 2007
Roelofarendsveen, Netherlands

During the Easter weekend of 6-9 April, the Yacht club Braassemermeer and the OCN (Optimist Club Nederland) organized the 22nd International Easter Optimist Regatta in Roelofarendsveen, Netherlands. This year about 250 young sailors from ten nations competed fiercely to win the prestigious event. Even competitors from the USA were there to race!
On Friday the fleet was split up in six groups competing amongst each other. Two races were scheduled, the first one to start at 14:00. In the first windward leg of the first fleet, the wind shifted and then died so racing was abandoned. After a while the wind picked up again, now from north northeast and increasing to about 10 knots, so just after 16:00 the race started again.

On Saturday, the second day of the Magic Marine International Easter Optimist Regatta, had three races scheduled, but the Race Committee intended to start Friday's second race as well. But winds were light (2-9 knots - northerly directions) so only three races in total could be completed. After two days Philip SPARKS (GBR) was on top of the leaderboard, followed by Graham LANDY (USA) and Dutchman Pieter GOEDHART.

Long Day Three

After the fog disappeared on Sunday morning, the sun came and with light winds from the west everybody prepared for another day of racing. It became a long day at the office with four races, while shifty winds made it difficult for both the sailors and the Race Committee. After eight races first place was with SPARKS, who came second in last year's Easter Regatta and fourth in the 2005 edition.

Monday, the last day of the Magic Marine Easter Regatta, had the two final races of the event scheduled. After an initial postponement because of delayed protest hearings, racing started in great conditions. With sunny skies and 10-12 knots from westerly directions there was fierce competition in all fleets. In the gold fleet SPARKS showed his strength with an 11th in the last race counting as his discard, resulting in a series of first and second places and one fourth.

It was clear who the winner of the 2007 Magic Marine International Easter Optimist Regatta was - SPARKS sailing for Great Britain, with Morgan KISS (USA) as the first girl in second and Miikka NIKKILLA (FIN) in third.

Bas van Grieken (As Amended By ISAF). Image, Action from the event:© Bas van Grieken
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