Athletes received an early welcome to the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing
World Championships with a playful dolphin getting up close and
personal with some of the RS:X sailors training off Bathers Bay in
For Spain’s Juan Manuel Moreno, the unexpected training partner
was a nice surprise, once he and his coach realised the fin they saw
“At first I thought it was a shark,” Moreno said. “But when we got closer we saw that it was a dolphin.”
“He was really nice, very big.”
The official welcome and opening ceremony for the Perth 2011 ISAF Sailing World Championships will begin at 1215 on Friday, 2 December at Forrest Place.
While the dolphins from Bathers Bay are unable to attend, the parade of athletes will bring all the excitement and a festival atmosphere to the heart of Perth’s CBD. The ceremony will feature bands and dignitaries, including the Premier of Western Australia.
At the end of the Opening Ceremony, a fleet of boats representing the history and heritage of each of the yacht clubs along the Swan River will take part in the Parade of Sail, taking turns to carry the ISAF Flag from Perth to Fremantle.
Starting with the 100-year-old Mercedes and ending with the beautifully restored 9-metre Acrospire, the convoy of boats will tell the story and history of sailing in Western Australia. A fleet representing the 10 Olympic sailing events competing at Perth 2011 will meet the ISAF Flag in Fremantle’s Inner Harbour.
The current world champions in the Men’s and Women’s RS:X, Piotr Myszka (POL) and Blanca Manchon (ESP), will bring the flag ashore and hand it to 2008 Olympic Games gold medallist in Women’s 470, Elise Rechichi (AUS), who will carry it across the beach to the Fremantle Roundhouse to be hoisted as the sun sets over the Indian Ocean.
When the sun next rises, it will be “game on” in Fremantle and the dream will begin for 1200 athletes.