We kick off the New Year with the postponed 2008 RS:X Youth World Championship. Postponed of course because of the sit in at the main international airport in Bangkok last December. The fact is that only about half the number of competitors have made it back but those who have represent the quality end of the fleet.
In the girls fleet now numbering 12 sailors from 7 nations, you do not have to look very far to find Laura Linares (ITA) three time ISAF Youth World Champion. She must be the favourite to stand on the top step of the podium. But don’t forget that there is a strong Polish Team here.
Maja Dziarnowska (POL) was second in the 2008 ISAF Youth World Championship in Canada and also second at the RS:X Youth World Championship in Sopot so Laura could find herself under a little bit of pressure from time to time.
Over in the boys fleet now with 35 entries from 16 countries and 3 continents , the top four contenders are these…
- Michalis Malekkides (CYP) the winner of the ISAF Youth Worlds and 16th at the RS:X Youth Europeans in Mondello
- Thiseas Kampas (GRE) - 2nd at the 2008 ISAF Youth Worlds and 13th in Mondello.
- Oliver Tom Schlemann (GER) - 3rd at the 2008 ISAF Youth Worlds
- Liran Moshe Machlev (ISR) who is this time the only guy from Israel to make it (there were 15 in December) won the light wind 2008 RS:X Europeans.
But do not forget Ho Tsun (TPE) and Chang Hao (HKG) or the strong Polish squad including Piotr Myszkowski (18th in Mondello) whose father raced in the 1992 Olympic Regatta in Busan on the Lechner. Manfredi Misuraca ITA) is also here with his compatriots Davide La Vela and Marcantonio Baglione.
Unlike at the 2008 RS:X Youth European Championships in Mondello which was a light wind event, things here are shaping up nicely. It may not be the warmest of weather for Thailand but the good news is that there has been a steady 15 knots of wind for the last three days.
Oh and by the way, the container provided by Neil Pryde is still here full of boards and rigs from the 2008 Olympic Regatta. There could be some heavy bidding on the sail of Alessandra Sensini (ITA) current ISAF World Sailor of the Year after her silver medal in China.
It is a unique occasion for a young sailor to pull a chartered sail out of its bag and find it belongs to a veritable windsurfing legend. Alessandra has no less that 4 Olympic medals, one gold, two silver and one bronze. An inspiration to all those preparing to race starting on Jan 13th.
Click through to rsxclass.com/document