Practice Over, Athletes Welcomed, Time For YOG Sailing
Practice is over, the sailors
have been welcomed at the Opening Ceremony and it's now time to focus on the
Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympic Sailing Competition.
One hundred and one sailors across four fleets have completed
registration and are fully prepared for racing on Lake Jinniu in Nanjing.
The Nanjing 2014 Opening Ceremony had it all. Ancient and modern China was
represented through jaw dropping audacity on an epic scale. Sky dive dancers,
a gigantic Olympic ring evolving telescope, dance perfection and a roaring
flame were just some of the highlights of a magical night.
A total of 205 nations paraded their flags in front of a packed 60,000
capacity stadium that was bursting with life, laughter and excitement
throughout the night.
Sailors' Paul de Souza (BAH), Florence Allan (CAY), Joshua Ioane (COK), Omer
Yoav (ISR), Odile van Aanholt (NED), Dolores Moreira (URU), Sam Morrell (IVB)
and Paige Clarke (ISV) had the honour of carrying their flags in front of
As a moment of a lifetime, Morrell described the night, "It was incredible. It was
pretty amazing when you're walking with your countries flag and you hear the
roar of the stadium. It was just a great experience.
"I met a lot of
people whilst waiting and it was really fun to just be there. It's been great
meeting new people. It's been an opportunity of a lifetime. I think YOG has
Fellow flag bearer Clarke added, "Everything's been pretty amazing. The whole feel of it here has been
pretty great. It's completely different just because there are so many
sports, so many people, so many countries here – it's pretty incredible.”
Sitting from the stands Indonesia's Kirana Wardojo (INA) watched on in
amazement, "It was
incredibly awesome,” she said with a glint in her eyes. "The Chinese, how long did they
train? It was so cool. You needed a lot of people to do it all. I was amazed
and want to see it again.”
Like the Indonesian, fellow sailor and spectator Pedro Correa (BRA) was also
gripped by the spectacle, "Woah, it was so cool. My mum was there and she told me 'Oh I was
crying'. It was a proper Olympic Opening Ceremony.”
The Olympic Sailing Venue at Lake Jinniu opened on 13 August with the sailors
arriving early to get hold of their supplied Byte CII and Techno 293
equipment. Lake Jinniu has thrown out a mixed bag of conditions in the
training days and after honing in their technical skills following equipment
distribution the 101 sailors had the chance to test themselves against each
other in a practice race on 17 August 2013.
Two race courses will host the 30 boat Byte CII Boys and Girls fleets, the 20
strong Techno 293 Boys pack and the 21 Techno 293 girl's racers.
On the race areas Henry Marshall (USA) said, "It's great. It's light wind which is nice. There
are a lot of elements that will make the regatta pretty shifty and puffy
which is cool. It's quite the playground for sailing.”
British racer Hanna Brant concurred, "It's
pretty shifty, you have to keep your head out of the boat quite a lot to
watch out for shifts and take them when you need to but it's good fun and
Spirits among the racers are at, on the face of it, an all-time high as they
soak in the unique atmosphere that the Youth Olympic Games offers. Staying in
the Youth Olympic Village is an experience like no other, but one that has
fully been embraced. "It is absolutely amazing,” said Megan Robertson (RSA). "There are people everywhere
trying to help you and our rooms are also the best. The food is okay'ish but
the atmosphere is amazing and I'm really enjoying it.”
Bermuda's Cecilia Wollman added, "It's really cool. I wish every place had a village like that. It's so
awesome and the food is really cool. It's cool where we go but sometimes it's
kind of weird, I had rice for breakfast this morning."
Racing is scheduled to commence at 11:00 local time on 18 August. The
competition time allows racing up until 18:00 local time and with close
proximity to the race courses, a literal stone's throw to course A, racing
can happen at quite short notice.
The four YOG Sailing events
Boy's Windsurfer - Techno 293
Girl's Windsurfer - Techno 293
Boy's One Person Dinghy - Byte CII
Girl's One Persona Dinghy - Byte CII
The YOG Sailing Competition will consist of an opening series and final race.
The format will be fleet racing but slalom racing may be run for the Boy's
and Girl's Windsurfers if the weather conditions are suitable.