After the first event in 1996 attracted 433 competitors in 12 classes, this years Buenos Aires week is expecting to attract a total of over 600 competitors in an event which has steadily increased in popularity.
Racing is spread over the two weekends of the 19 - 20 October and 26 - 27 October on six course for the seventeen fleets and for the Europe and 420 Class counts as the Argentinian National Championship.
As an ISAF Grade 3 event in the Olympic classes of the Laser, Europe, 470 and Star, the event will serve as a useful indication as to who may represent Argentina at the Olympic Games in Athens 2004.
As well as individual class trophies, competitors will race for the overall challenge Trophy, given for the team with the lowest aggregate score. For the first three years of the event this was won by Martin Kundig in the Europe but more recently has been won by Cadet sailors and in 2001 by Javier Conte and Juan de la Fuente, who are currently ranked fourteenth in the ISAF World Sailing Rankings and finished twelfth in this years 470 World Championship.
Once ranked as high as eighth, their result in the World Championship narrowly denied Argentina immediate qualification for the Olympic Games in 2004 in the 470, but with the second of three opportunities at the 2003 ISAF World Sailing Championship in Cadiz, they should feel comfortable with their position.
The junior classes of the Cadet and Optimist are traditionally well represented on the South American continent with an Argentine pair winning the Cadet World Championship in 2002 and 2001.
The optimist fleet represents the largest number of pre-entries, with over 200 boats competing in two fleets of beginners and advanced sailors.
With a huge turnout expected, firmly establishing the event as one of the biggest and best for many sailors in all the dinghy and keelboat classes represented, a good week is forecast for all.