Racing at the 52 Trofeo Princesa Sofía, Mallorca by Iberostar, opened Friday, but only for the monotype classes, the 27 boats in the J/80, J/70, 6 Metre and Dragon classes.
The Olympic classes do not start their racing until Monday when the 470 mixed fleet and the women’s ILCA 6 (Radial) & men’s ILCA 7 (Laser) dinghies will start their events.
A high quality nine strong 6 Metre fleet opened their first attendance at the 52 Trofeo Princesa Sofia with two good races on the Bay of Palma in brisk conditions.
Only three points separate the top four teams after racing Friday with Jan Eckert leading on Ginkgo Too, tied on points with second Violeta Alvarez and team on Stella, and in third place Markus Wieser and crew on Dieter Schoen’s Momo
In the Dragon class the German flagged team on Willy lead with two second places today.
The J/70s see the local Palma boat Patakin of Luis Albert Solana take an early lead winning all three races as did the Arenal/Puerto Andratx crew of Sal in the J/80s . . . Full results available here.
From Monday, when the first of the Olympic classes take to the water, this event will see the full British Sailing Team competing as they hit the international circuit in the lead-up to the Paris 2024 Games.
And whatever their status in the selection process, all will be keen to put down a marker from the start of this season.
The RYA has a history of announcing their first selections for the Olympics by the end of the preceeding year, and although there has been considerable churn in the British squad since Tokyo, such that the RYA website is struggling to keep up, this opens the door for first time Olympic competitors.
On Monday the first British squad members competing include . . .
Martin Wrigley and Bettine Harris, and Vita Heathcote and Ryan Orr in the 470 class. Matilda Nicholls, Daisy Collingridge and Hannah Snellgrove in the ILCA 6, and Micky Beckett, Elliot Hanson, Sam Whaley and Dan Whiteley in the ILCA7.
Of these only Elliot Hanson in the ILCA7 has previously competed at Olympics – in Tokyo where he finished 12th.
And in the 470 class which has switched from individual men and women’s events, to one combined mixed crew event, there is the additional factor of the British 470 gold medalists retiring . . . the selection is now wide-open.
It is a similar story in the other seven classes, where except for John Gimson and Anna Burnet in the Nacra 17, every place at the Paris 2024 Games is up for grabs.