The word from Niterói is that the Brazilian hosts have received entries from 18 countries and reached the prescribed limit of 180 sailors. All South American countries, which are allowed 15 sailors each with a double team from the hosts, are represented except Paraguay, with Colombia entering a full team for the first time from its fast-growing fleet. North America is represented by full teams from Bermuda, Mexico and the USA, and smaller teams from Puerto Rico, Trinidad and the US Virgin Islands, while nine discretionary places have been allocated to visitors from Singapore, Greece and Norway.
Last year Singapore who are currently ranked world #1 in Optimists shocked the event by placing first and second. The Americas will be seeking revenge! Find out more at the IODA South American Championship website - www.cncharitas.com.br/sulamericano.html.
In Europe the calendar has been enhanced by a new Trofeo Internacional Grumete Pescanova at Punta Lagoa, Vigo in northern Spain, where 131 worldwide entries are reported.
The following week sees the three big ones. Over 600 entrants are already registered and over 700 have participated in the past at the Easter Meeting at Riva del Garda, Italy. The Magic Marine Easter Regatta in Braassemermeer, Netherlands is limited to 270 sailors, which last year came from 14 countries. The favourite for Austrians and other east-European sailors, again with nearly 250 entries in 2006, is the Nokia Easter Regatta in Protoroz, Slovenia.
Finally for those still on vacation there is the Optispring Regatta on 14-15 April, held in Stellendam, Netherlands, but organized by the Belgian Optimist Association.