Portsmouth’s Gunwharf Quays retail shopping destination has been announced as the official event partner for the Formula Kite European Championships taking place off Eastney Beach 19-24 September 2023.
The regatta is set to welcome 150 athletes from 35 nations on the waters off Eastney Beach.
International Olympic class sailing events are rare in the UK . . . this will be only the second Olympic sailing class International event in the UK since 2015/16.
Adding to the occasion is that the Olympic Formula Kite class is a new event introduced for the 2024 Paris Games, where it will be the first Kite powered sailing event as well as joining the upgraded windsurfer event in featuring foiling boards.
It is also an Olympic sport that Britain’s Sailing Team members have been doing well in recently.
At the Formula Kite Paris 2024 Sailing Test Event in Marseille, France, Britain took silver in both the men and women’s events – Connor Bainbridge and Eleanor Aldridge are both likely to represent Britain at the next Olympics.
With the next Games taking place in July 2024 this championship will be a major factor in the British Sailing Team selection process, and due to the relatively short time to the Paris Games, can be expected to attract a top-class international field of around 150 entries.
Not only will European Championship glory be at stake in Portsmouth, but the event also provides one of few opportunities for riders to qualify for quota places for their nations to compete at next year’s Games.
Racing at the Formula Kite Europeans will start on Tuesday 19 September and run through to a thrilling knock-out finale on Sunday 24 September.
A free-of-charge Fan Zone with activities for all the family will be in place for spectators on Eastney Beach for the final weekend of 23-24 September.
Sessions for over 400 local schoolchildren and youth groups will be delivered at a bespoke Beach Club during the Championships, where youngsters will experience the joys of watersports, learn some of the science behind them and also how to care for their vital marine environment.
“As a flagship local business of national and international renown, we’re delighted to welcome Gunwharf Quays on board as official event partner for the Formula Kite Europeans,” said RYA Event Director Niall McLeod.