Tue, 14/07/2009

Fraglia Vela Riva, host this month of 3 prestigious World Championship events to be held back-to-back, opened the first today at 1 pm.  At the same time, Fraglia welcomes the 29erXX Gold Cup event to Riva.  British crew Dave Evans and Simon Hiscocks today with 2 first-place finishes and 1 fourth. Following the 29erXX's third race, Silja Lehtinen and Will Howard hold the lead.


The wind wasn't terribly strong today. Shifting and fluctuating, it blew around 5 m/s. But the groundwork for a successful 2009 49er World Championship had already been laid. Preparatory practice races concluded yesterday. The Skippers' Meeting, held at 6 pm yesterday on Fraglia Vela Riva's terrace, moved the organizational coordination a step closer to regattatime. And so, today at 1 pm, this prestigious international event got off-and-sailing. The schedule: today 3 Qualifying Series races are being held. These Qualifying Series will continue tomorrow (Wednesday) and also Thursday. Then, the Final Series races are to be sailed on Friday, Saturday and Sunday, as well as the Medal Race. Competing in the 49er Class: 89 crews representing 23 different countries (ARG, AUS, AUT, BEL, CAN, CRO, DEN, ESP, FIN, FRA, GBR, GER, GRE, IRL, ITA, JPN, NZL, POL, POR, RUS, SUI, SWE, USA). Meanwhile, the ratio of international diversity is even more accentuated among the other event's 29erXX Class: 15 crews present here at Riva, representing 9 different nations (FIN, FRA, ARG, USA, GER, GBR, SWE, ITA, DEN). Regatta courses dedicated to both events were chosen and coordinated by Fraglia Vela Riva in collaboration with the Regatta committee. One course is located not far from Riva, across from the magnificent waterfalls of the Ponale River. This course is assigned to the 49er Fleet's Yellow Group, and also to the 29erXX event. Meanwhile, the second regatta course, where the 49er Class' Blue and Red Groups will compete, is situated slightly farther down the lake. Sailors of this second course will reach Capo Reamol and then return. At the conclusion of today's third race, the British crew Dave Evans and Simon Hiscocks (GBR 1096) (1, 4, 1) are at the top of the ranks. In second position Nico Delle Karth and Nikolaus Leopold Resch (AUT 10) (3, 1, 4). In third position Stevie Morrison and Ben Rhodes (GBR 2) (1, 1, 7): 49er World Champion from 2007. Pietro and Gianfranco Sibello are, for the time being, in sixth position (7, 4, 1). Italians Giuseppe Angilella and Pietro Zucchetti (ITA 24) closed the day in 20th position (8, 12, 9). Nathan Outteridge (AUS 1), 2008's 49er World Champion in Melbourne, is temporarily in eighth position (2, 2, 10). Iker Martinez and Xabi Fernandez, 2004 Athens Olympic Champions, and World Champions (not to mention also 2002 World Champions in Kaneohe Bay (USA)), are in 25th position (15, 15, 4). Chris Draper, World Champion in 2006 in Aix-le-Bain, (FRA), with Peter Greenhalgh, hold today's 14th position in the rankings (2, 10, 6). In general, the Italian fleet is well-represented in this year's 49er event with 11 crews participating. Following three races among the 29erXX Class, Finland's Silja Lehtinen and Will Howard (FIN 11) (5, 2, 1) hold the top-ranking spot. Second position in the temporary overall scores for Sara Engstrom and Hanna Dahiborg (SWE 1) (1, 5, 8); third position for Werner Gieser and Dominik Entsminger (GER 17) (3, 8, 4). One of today's races was won by Sam Watson and Henry Collison (GBR 10) (dnf, 1, 2). Ample space is being allotted to the 49er 2009 World Championship this week on three different websites. So, press releases, photos and videos will be posted on www.fragliavelariva.it, on the FIV website and also on www.sailrev.tv. Space will also be dedicated to the 29erXX event. Results will be posted in the coming days on 49er's website (www.49erworlds.org) and on Fraglia Vela Riva's website (www.fragliavelariva.it). Main Sponsor of both the 49er World Championship and the 29erXX Gold Cup is Slam. Other sponsors include: Seiko, Trentino SpA, Agraria Riva Del Garda, San Pellegrino and Riva del Garda Fiere e Congressi.


Press Office: Antonio Sueri - Valerie Gladych