49 ENTRIES FOR HOBIE YOUTH CHAMPIONSHIPS 2004
Belgium / Duinbergen, July 22nd 2004 - Forty nine sailing teams, representing six countries, registered for the Hobie Youth Championships in Duinbergen/Belgium. Thirty two will participate in the Hobie 16 genaker Youth Europeans and seventeen in the first Hobie Dragoon Worlds, both from 27 until 30 July 2004. It is a competitive fleet with sailors like the Hobie 16 ISAF Youth World Champions 2004, Tom Phipps and Jon Cook (GBR). Hobie heros Alberto Sonino (ITA) and Gerard Loos (NED) will give a special clinic on Sunday July 25th and Monday 26th.
Other favourites in the Hobie 16 fleet are silver medalists of the ISAF World Youth Championships 2004, Julien Villion and Martin Bataille from France, the girls’ crew Laurancy Morgane and Estelle Rousseau from France and the Australians Taylor Booth and Jesse Dobie. Booth had a great personal teacher, since his father Mitch Booth is a successful olympic Tornado sailor (bronze in ’92 and silver in ’96). He will represent the Netherlands in Athens. The British teams Andrew and Richard Glover and Hannah Rowles/Stephanie Wall are likely winners in the Hobie Dragoon class.
The challenge is about fighting the elements, such as current, tides, waves and surf. And it is about competition with fellow sailors and meeting boys and girls from all over the world. Competitors also get the chance to prepare themselves for the Europeans in August 2005, where the selection for the Worlds 2005 in South-Afirca will take place. Ute Vrijburg, Executive Director of the European Hobie Class Association: “We are proud that youth can challenge among themselves. The first Hobie Dragoon World Championships and the Hobie 16 genaker Youth European Championship are unique in the worldwide catamaran scene. It is great that the Hobie 16 and the Hobie Dragoon have the extra dimension on board, the genaker. It supplies the ultimate feeling of 'racing on the sea'! With these youth events they get extra race hours and time to improve. Be aware of these youngsters when they use their slogan: 'try to beat us on the water'. Hope to see you all in Duinbergen!”
From Hobie Dragoon, to Hobie 16, to F18 Hobie Tiger, to the Olympic Games. It is a dream of many youngsters, but they need training to make their dreams come true. That is why the European Hobie Cat Assiciation and Hobie Cat Europe sponsor a youth clinic with a Hobie winner at least once a year. It gives the sailors the chance to ask all their questions. On Sunday July 25th and Monday 26th, Hobie hero Alberto Sonino from Italy and Gerard Loos from Netherlands will be the key persons at the 2004 clinic, both are keen on learning the youth how to handle the genakers in all wind and wave conditioins.
Organisation and Location
The Royal Belgian Sailing Club organises the event under auspices of the European Hobie Cat Association. The competitors will race in the bay of Duinbergen, which is silted up with sand and there are no breakwaters. That makes it a good location for youth and junior sailing regattas. For them it is a safe place to learn, race and train. The Notice of Race is available through the website www.rbsc.be .
Hobie Youth Challenge 2004
Both championships are part of the Hobie Youth Challenge program 2004. The European Hobie Class Association created the Hobie Youth Challenge 2004 for youngsters under the age of 21 on December 31st 2004, It is open for Hobie 14, Hobie 16 (with and without genaker) or Hobie Dragoon sailors of this age. But for the Hobie Dragoon rookies, it is also possible to compete with their mum or dad. The overall ranking includes four regattas, of which at least two should be sailed in other countries. Participating in more events is challenging, because the best four results will count. The ISAF high-point system will determine the winner, therefore the number of participants will be important. Winning of ten teams, means ten points and being the best of twenty yields twenty points. There are prizes for all competitors, but the winning team will get free registration and 200 euro travel fee for the 2005 Europeans Hobie 16, Hobie 14 or Hobie Dragoon.