As it has become a tradition in Easter, and while the the attention of the new continent was drawn to the IODA South Americans,

Europe and Oceania
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As it has become a tradition in Easter, and while the the attention of the new continent was drawn to the IODA South Americans,

As it has become a tradition in Easter, and while the the attention of the new continent was drawn to the IODA South Americans, Europe had its own feast of Optisailing. There were five big regattas that gathered more than 1000 sailors from every corner of the continent: the Garda Meeting in Italy, the Easter Regatta in Slovenia, the Optispring in Belgium, the Easter Regatta in the Netherlands and the Spring International Trophy in France. No one had any excuse not to sail in Easter!!

Meanwhile in Oceania... Opti sailors had fun as well during the Open National championship in New Zealand.

See below a brief report of each event:

Garda Meeting - Lago di Garda, Italy

garda logo

  • # of sailors: 641 juniores (12 to 15 year old sailors) plus 214 cadetes (9 to 11 year old sailors)
  • # of countries: 21
  • # of races: 10 for the juniores and 8 for the cadetes.
  • Winners: 1st: Nogay Dokmeci (TUR), 2nd: Jesper Thomasson (SWE), 3rd: Maria Vittoria Marchesini (ITA) | Results |

garda scene

Although the number of sailors was not a record -855 sailors in Garda is 'quite good' :) compared to +950 in past editions!!- the event was a success anyway. The weather conditions were absolutely perfect with warm temperatures, sun and winds of 16 knots average. In the words of Mr Mauro Stagna, President of Fraglia Vela Riva:

"The success of this event has been the formula of combining the game aspect with that of sport and competition. During these past few days we have endeavoured to offer not just regattas but also activities that would involve everyone.....participants and their families alike. On Friday evening at the Palameeting of Riva we held a Pizza and Nutella party with music and prize raffles. Everyone was able to enjoy themselves and socialize with each other on dry land. This year we have the important involvement of local businesses who, with our valued partnerships with prestigious sponsors, help us make it possible to organize such a historic event".

Easter Regatta - Portoroz, Slovenia

logo portoroz

  • # of sailors: 358
  • # of countries: 9
  • # of races: 5
  • Winners: 1st: Liam Orel (SLO), 2nd: Toni Vrscaj (SLO), 3rd: Rodolfo Di Laghi (ITA) | Results |

The 19th edition of the regatta was a sheer success. Sailing conditions were of flat waters and low winds. On the second sailing day the wind dropped to 0 knots after the first race and having waited for two hours for a breeze to develop, 360 whistles were blown at the same time to 'convince' the race officer to abandon the races of the day. :)

All in all it was a great event, especially when considering that it was organised just by parents and volunteers. Good luck for next year.

Spring International Trophy - Marseille, France

sailing marseille

  • # of sailors: 403
  • # of countries: 6
  • # of races: 8 for Minimes D1 and 6 for Minimes D2 and Benjamins
  • Winners: 1st: Silvia Mas (ESP), 2nd: Timi Mourniac (FRA), 3rd: Arthur Fortune (FRA) | Results |

This event is one of the top regattas in France as sailors qualify for the European Championship. It has also become a must for many top level sailors in other countries and the number of attendees have been increasing for the last couple of years. It changes venue every year and this time it was the turn of the Cercle de Voile de Marseillan to host it. Eight races were sailed in strong winds and Silvia proved once more that girls have nothing to envy the boys.

Optispring - Port Zélande, Belgium

  • # of sailors: 162
  • # of countries: 6
  • # of races: 6
  • Winners: 1st: Bart Lambriex (NED), 2nd: Miel Verstraete (BEL), 3rd: Victor Migraine (FRA) | Results |

winners in Belgium

The regatta was held from April 9 to 10, organised by the Dinghy Optimist Class Belgium (DOCB) in co-operation with the Royal Yacht Club of Belgium vzw.

Magic Marine Easter Regatta - Braassemermeer, Netherlands

  • # of sailors: 222
  • # of countries: 11
  • # of races: 8
  • Winners: 1st: Bart Lambriex (NED), 2nd: Scipio Houtman (NED), 3rd: Stijn Paardekooper (NED) | Results |

NZIODA Open Nationals - Wakatere, New Zealand

  • # of sailors: 203
  • # of countries: 5
  • # of races: 14
  • Winners: 1st: Leonard Takahashi-Fry (NZL), 2nd: Isaac McHardie (NZL), 3rd: Markus Somerville (NZL) | Results |

sailing and beach

The Open fleet Championship was won by Aucklander 12 year old Leonard Takahashi-Fry of Murrays Bay Sailing Club/Wakatere Boating Club. Leonard drew ahead of his competitors by sailing a very consistent series, with only one race outside the top ten placings.

On the final day conditions were wet, with moderate north easterly winds coming onshore which gusted up to 18 knots as rain squalls blew through. However, three races were completed and the full quota of 14 races scheduled for the series were sailed.

The race committee, headed by Napier's Gerald Martin, worked very hard over five days to achieve this as this regatta is the largest single class regatta in New Zealand with 310 boats racing, it is the selection regatta for the New Zealand World Championship Optimist team, and it has also been used as a test run for the 2011 World Championship to be held in Napier at the end of this year.