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17 July 2005, 08:41 am
Final Results
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Nivea Optimist European Championship 2005
Gydnia, Poland

European and Open Champions were decided yesterday with a final two races. Despite rising winds it was not possible to run the final scheduled race, but with eleven completed the decisive second discard came into play.
Highlight of the results must be the victory in the open girls event of Emily DELLENBAUGH (USA). Emily just happens to be USA Junior (Under-19) champion in the two-person category, sailed in 420s. The myth that young sailors must be forced out of the Optimist to boost their chances in youth boats looks weaker than ever and Emily's father, the well known 'Speed Smarts' expert was obviously smart enough to realise this.

European Girls champion is Emma OLJELUND (SWE) who had been at or near the lead throughout the event and, needing a good result in the final race, duly won it to take gold by just two points from Elia BORREGO (Spain).

In the boys event Jess Lyhne BONDE of Denmark had had a poor second day and looked out of contention. The second discard and two single-figure results were however just enough to squeeze victory from Diego MONTAUTTI (BRA) as his other main rivals Diego BOTIN (ESP) and Akiklas DROUGAS (GRE) sailed their discards.

Among the results from countries who do not always show well were a commendable 8th from Yan CHEKH of Russia, Karl CREMONA of Malta in 14th, and, among the girls, the 18th of Diana KISSANE (IRL).

Gdynia produced a fine championship but the winds were undeniably shifty and may reinforce the arguments of those who believe that four successive starts are too many to enable even the best of race officers to achieve ideal racing.

Title sponsors of the championship are NIVEA whose long-term commitment to the Class in Poland, already worth nearly US$1 million, is detailed at
www.europti.pl/?sub=Sponsors
Robert Wilkes. Image: © Maciek Grabowski
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