President’s 25th Letter - 16/11/2021

Dear friends,

We are in the midst of autumn and sailors are happily sailing in many places around Europe, thanks to mild weather conditions and to lifted pandemic-related limitations. Be on the lookout nonetheless and do not lower the guard, because dark clouds, in the form of increasing contagion rates in spite of vaccination, are appearing on the horizon and are threatening our sailing and social regained freedom.

Executive Board meeting
We are happy to report that Executive Board members were finally able to meet in Neusiedl-am-See (Austria), where our Secretariat is located, and get to know our secretary general in person! We fondly thank the warm hospitality we enjoyed from the Austrian Sailing Federation. In almost three full days in Austria we were able to cover most matters on our table; it was especially rewarding to deal with strategic matters in the friendly and constructive way we are fortunate to enjoy. Tomasz Chamera, vice-president of World Sailing and former first vice-president of EUROSAF, attended the meeting and provided insights into EUROSAF matters and their link to possible collaborations with World Sailing.

2022 Race Officials Exchange meeting
Club Nàutic S’Arenal (Palma de Mallorca, Spain) has confirmed its invitation to host the 2022 meeting on 15 January 2022. Inform your delegates! Tell them that a date close to end of 2021 will be set up for delegates to send the information about events and available ROs in order to have all the required data ready before the meeting for the allocation process.

On top of the exchange itself we plan to discuss the relevance of developing a platform for Members to post their training courses open to other Members. As discussed in Dun Laoghaire two years ago, publicizing such opportunities would be of value to organizing Members, as their offerings would attract more participants and broaden the networking effect, while helping to recover their costs, and to participating ROs and their Members, especially those with little or no training capabilities, by giving them access to such opportunities for a fraction of the cost of organizing them. 

We also plan to add presentations of interest to delegates. If you or your delegate have a topic in mind or would like to present an item, come forward!

2022 Ordinary General Assembly
The date of the meeting has been changed to 12 March 2022 to accommodate the change of dates of Trofeo Princesa Sofía 2022 and both Easter holidays, Catholic and Orthodox. The place remains Zagreb (Croatia) thanks to the Croatian Sailing Federation having extended its previous invitation. Official information will follow as scheduled in the Constitution.

2021 EUROSAF Events
Despite pandemic uncertainties, and thanks to the resilience of organizing authorities, all but two EUROSAF Events were sailed and only one EUROSAF Cup was cancelled. Note that two new events were sailed under the EUROSAF umbrella in 2021!

The EUROSAF Inclusive European Championship planned in Medemblik, the Netherlands, from 21 May to 1 June, as part of the EUROSAF Inclusive Cup, was finally cancelled due to pandemic limitations.

The EUROSAF Match Racing, Youth European Championship was sailed in Ledro, Italy, from 24 to 27 June. Thimoté Polet, Emilien Polaert, and Gaultier Tallieu (FRA) were champions; Riccardo Sepe, Gianluca Perasole, and Simone Taglialatela (ITA) second; and Tom Foucher, Édouard Champault, and Gwen Guenin (FRA) third. 

The EUROSAF Match Racing, Open European Championship was successfully organized on Verkh-Isetsky Lake in Ekaterinburg, Russia, from 17 to 21 August. Pavel Kuznetsov (RUS), Andrey Kochnev (RUS), and Maxime Mesnil (FRA) climbed on the podium.

The EUROSAF Club Sailing Championship took place on Neue Donau, in the heart of Vienna, Austria, from 26 to 29 August, with boats2sail taking the first place in front of Wildcard Vienna and VISC, all from Vienna! 

The third EUROSAF Mixed Offshore European Championship, organized within the Nastro Rosa regatta and sailing from Genoa to Naples from 27 August to 7 September in three legs (Genoa-Civitavecchia, Civitavecchia-Gaeta, Gaeta-Naples) was a wonderful event. Italian team Spadillo (Alberto Bona and Cecilia Zorzi) took first place; Belgium’s team Cataldo (Jonasz Gerkens and Sophie Faguet) second; and Italian team San Marco (Andrea Pendibene and Giovanna Valsecchi) third. The event was the European qualifier to the Mixed Offshore World Championship, run from Brindisi to Venice from 16 to 26 September.

A new long distance, mixed offshore event was launched on 6 November under EUROSAF auspices. Sailing non-stop from Venice to Genoa, the Nastro Rosa Veloce is the longest non-stop offshore Mediterranean event.

Concerning EUROSAF Class championships:

  • the EUROSAF L30 European Championship was successfully sailed at Spartacus Sailing Club on Balaton Lake, Hungary, from 16 to 20 July; Tranquilo (HUN) was first, Present Perfect (HUN) second, and L31 (GER), skippered by the newly elected Class president, third; 
  • the EUROSAF Pirat Junior European Championship, planned on Ratzeburger See, Germany, from 17 to 24 July, was cancelled because of travel restrictions; 
  • the newly granted EUROSAF Beneteau First 27 SE & Seascape27 European Single-handed Championship sailed from 15 to 19 September in Svendborg, Denmark, as part of the Silverrudder race; and 
  • the EUROSAF Platu25 European Championship took place in Odessa, Ukraine, from 6 to 10 October and was reportedly the first international sailing event ever sailed in the country! 35 teams competed for the European class title that went to Rodion Luka on UKR69, followed by Oleksandr Poryandchenko on UKR999 Kontramarka and Maksym Hontar on UKR300 GrandEvento. Note that the winner was just one point ahead of the second team, notably after our own first vice-president, acting as a jury member, issued them with a penalty!

Concerning EUROSAF Cups:

  • the EUROSAF 420 Cup was cancelled following the cancellation of the majority of its events; 
  • the EUROSAF Inclusive Cup, sailed in 2.4mR boats, went ahead as planned, but for one postponement (Berlin, Germany) and one cancellation (Medemblik, the Netherlands): Jesolo, Italy (5 and 6 June), Gmunden am Traunsee, Austria (20 to 22 August), Maurach am Achensee, Austria (4 and 5 September), Prien am Chiemsee, Germany (16 to 19 September), Máchovo Jezero, Czech Republic (25 to 27 September), and the postponed Berlin event (8 to 10 October). 

The ranking that goes with EUROSAF Cups is a valuable service we are offering sailors who attend the events; it promotes participation and gives more value to sailors, classes, and organizing authorities without adding events to the calendar. EUROSAF Cups are open to any class wishing to link events spread throughout Europe.

2022 EUROSAF Events
Only the EUROSAF Sailing Champions League (formerly the EUROSAF Club Sailing Championship) is still open for bids. Contact the secretary general to host it. All other EUROSAF Events have received bids and most are scheduled (all places and dates TBC):

  • EUROSAF Mixed Offshore European Championship: Istanbul (Turkey) in April;
  • EUROSAF Inclusive European Championship: TBD;
  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Youth European Championship: Lago di Ledro (Italy) from 9 to 12 June;
  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Open European Championship: Ravenna (Italy) from 23 to 26 June;
  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Women’s European Championship: Corfu (Greece) from 12 to 15 October.

The EUROSAF 420 Cup is also well underway, the EUROSAF Inclusive Cup is being discussed, and a new EUROSAF Mediterranean Mixed Offshore Series, encompassing all EUROSAF-supported mixed offshore events, is being set up.

Note that new classes are approaching us to hold their European Championship under the EUROSAF umbrella.

2023 EUROSAF Events
The EUROSAF Sailing Champions League European Championship and the EUROSAF Inclusive European Championship are still open for bids. Contact the secretary general to host any of them. All other EUROSAF Events have received bids and most are scheduled (all places and dates TBC):

  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Youth European Championship: Nantes (France) from 28 April to 1 May;
  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Open European Championship: Corfu (Greece) from 10 to 14 May or from 4 to 8 October;
  • EUROSAF Mixed Offshore European Championship: Den Haag (Netherlands) from 23 to 29 May;
  • EUROSAF Match Racing, Women’s European Championship: TBD.

The Austrian Ministry of Sport’s decision on further funding is still pending. The end of the year, when the current funding and services arrangement will finish, is close. If your Federation is willing and able to provide a working arrangement to fund and host the EUROSAF Secretariat and deepen the cooperation with EUROSAF and other European Federations, please come forward to jointly investigate its feasibility.

Whether you are still sailing or have stored your gear, get ready for the holidays: update and enlarge your list of sailing wishes and resolutions!

Best regards,

Josep M. PLA