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25 November 2002, 03:23 pm
Serious Competition Starts Today
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XIX Central American and Caribbean Games
Valle de Bravo

With the main games being held in San Salvador, the sailing event takes place in Mexico, nearly 2000 metres above sea level in the picturesque town of Valle de Bravo.
The Central American and Caribbean Games is what is known as a Regional Games, a multi-sport championship open to participants from a specific geographic region.

The Central American and Caribbean Games is an event steeped in history. The first running of the event took place in Mexico in 1926 and, apart from a slight disruption due to World War II, have taken place every four years since. Sailing made it's first appearance in the games held in Cuba in 1982, and since then has featured in every games.

The last games, held in Punto Fijo Venezuela, in 1998, saw sixty five athletes from 14 Central American and Caribbean countries, compete in the IMCO One Design and Laser Classes, and the Sunfish and Hobie 16.

This year, the event takes place again using the IMCO One Design for men and women, the Laser, Laser Radial, the Hobie 16 and J24. Measurement has been ongoing since last Wednesday and the opening ceremony and practice race took place yesterday on Lake Avandaro.

This is the first time the even has been held on Inland waters, but the venue is rising to the challenge, having also won the right to hold the J24 North American Championship in 2003 on the same patch of water.

Two races per day for five days are scheduled, with competition finishing on Friday 29 November,and the Awards Ceremony taking place on Saturday 30 November.

Henry Figueroa (PUR) has been appointed the ISAF Technical Delegate for the event, and will provide expertise on the technical running of the event to ensure a successful sailing Games. The International Jury is chaired by Eric Tulla (PUR) and includes members from Mexico, Columbia, British and American Virgin Islands and Venezuela.

ISAF supports Regional Games and the inclusion of sailing on the sports programme. Whilst for some Regional Games, sailing is always on the programme for others sailing may be one of the optional sports. ISAF has a Regional Games Committee, whose members represent the specific regional games, and work with the Regional Games Organising Committees to not only offer support to the events, but also to lobby for sailing's continued inclusion in the games. Where the Regional Games Organising Committee does not have the funding, ISAF will finance the attendance of the ISAF Technical Delegate at the specific Regional Games, both for preparatory meetings and during the Games itself.
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