At this early stage, entries for the Championship already include Holland, Australia, Russia and France. Spain's silver medallist women's team are sure to be starters, and there is hope that 2003 ISAF Sailor of the Year and gold medallist in the Europe last year, Siren SUNDBY (NOR), will make an appearance after switching to the 470 for this Olympic cycle.
Missing will be four-time world champions and 470 Hall of Fame members, Sofia BEKATOROU and Emilia TSOULFA (GRE). The Greek pair are taking a year off after their gold medal performance in Athens. In fact their only appearance this year will be the Mediterranean Games in Spain in late June.
Asian teams should be leaders in San Francisco, with China pledging a team. Thirty five more 470's are due to be delivered to the 2008 Olympic host nation, China, this year and excitement is growing already for the 2006 470 World Championship to be held in Rizhou following the 2006 Pre-Olympic test event.
Shipping specialists, Schenker, have made special arrangements to enable teams to pack quickly following the 470 European Championship in Poland, to arrive in Oakland, USA in time to join the Regatta Schedule, which the US 470 Class Association has put together.
Teams can make the most of their trip to the USA with three regattas planned:
The 470 US National Championship from 7-10 August at Santa Cruz Yacht Club, Santa Cruz, USA;
The 470 North American Championship from 12-16 August at Bay View Boat Club, San Francisco, USA;
And the 470 World Championship from 19-28 August at St. Francis Yacht Club, San Francisco, USA. www.stfyc.com
One hundred and fifty teams from 45 nations contested the last 470 World Championship in Croatia and competition is expected to be just as tough in San Francisco.
Shipping details can be made via Erich.Seifert@schenker.com.
NOR and Entry Form are available from the International 470 Class Association website.