Finally – Racing starts in Thessaloniki
The 49er, 49erFX, and Nacra 17 European Championships begins racing on September 14, 2021. It was originally scheduled for May 2020, then September 2020, then May 2021, and now finally will occur in the denouement from Tokyo 2020.
112 teams are competing, with attendance mostly limited to Europeans, but with a few teams from Oceania and the America’s. Covid 19 travel remains a high hurdle, but once on site the ambiance and feel of a normal regatta are in place.
Headlining the competition are John Gimson with Anna Burnett (GBR), fresh from their silver medal performance in Tokyo. They are one of the few Olympic teams ready to dip their tows in the water already.
There are huge contingents from both Germany and Great Britain, both nations embracing the squad mentality and promoting domestic competition alongside international competition. There is also a large local squad, with eight Greek teams taking part.
Team have been training in wonderful conditions to date, with daily sea breezes coming in around 1 pm, and staying strong for sailing through to sunset at about 8 pm.
As a warm up, the club hosted an Alexander the Great regatta for three days which about half the teams participated in. Winning in the 49er was Andrew Mollerus with Ian Macdiarmid (USA) and winning the 49erFX was Odile Van Aanholt with Elise De Ruyter.
Odile then bounced back the following morning to lead the fleet in our beach clean efforts.
Racing runs for six days concluding on September 19, 2021. Results, photos, video and more are available at https://49er.org/event/2021-european-championship/