Racing Gets underway today in the 40 Anniversary 470 European Championship in the French Resort of Brest in Britanny, France. The pre-Europeans have just been completed.
112 men and mixed crews and 44 women crews will compete in the final ISAF Grade one event prior to the ISAF World Sailing Championships in Cadiz in September and as people reach the peak of their performance levels, racing can be expected to be both of a high quality, and very tight.
Names to watch in the men's fleet will be defending European champion Nicolas CHARBONNIER sailing with Olivier BAUSSET of France, last years runners up and worlds silver medallists Andreas KOSMATOPOULOS and Kostas TRIGONIS of Greece and the 1996 Olympic gold medallists Eugeny BRASLAVETS and Igor MATVIENKO from Ukraine.
Following the Andre Cornu Trophy, pre event that was sailed over the last few day's, more competition from the top spots could be evident. Winners of the event Alvaro MARINHO and Miguel NUNES (POR), currently ranked 12 in the world, could also be a force to be reckoned with, alongside Sydney 2000 veterans, Nick ROGERS and Joe GLANFIELD (GBR).
The competition in the women's event will come from defending European champions,world number one ranked sailors and ISAF Rolex World Sailor sof the year in 2002, Sofia BEKATOROU and Emilia TSOULFA from Greece as well as world silver medallists and European runners up, Dutch sailors Lisa WESTERHOFF and Margriet MATTHIJSSE.
The qualifying series for the European championship commences today through until 11 July, where six races will be sailed over the three days. The final series, where sailors will be split into gold, silver and bronze fleets, starts on the 12 and finishes on the 15 July, with eight races scheduled.
Results summaries will be posted here and the full results will be available on the event website at the address below.