Carnival in full sail at Vilamoura

news: Carnival in full sail at Vilamoura

VILAMOURA Marina launched seven days of top class competitive sailing recently at the 31st International Carnival Sailing Week. The regatta, featuring the cream of European sailing talent, sees over 400 yachts participating in various categories.Among the countries represented are Portugal, Spain, Great Britain, Ireland, France, Germany, Hungary, Romania, Holland and Belgium, with many sailors and crews vying for a place to represent their nations in the 2008 Olympic Games.

2003 World Champion and Olympic finalist in the Laser class, Portuguese Gustavo Lima, 28, was on top form and, as expected, stole an early lead. However, he was hotly pursued by Englishman Keir Clark, 19, current European Youth Champion and favourite to represent Great Britain in 2008.

In the ‘49er’ class, brothers Renato and Gilberto Conde from Clube ANGE made the ideal racing team and proved themselves names to watch over coming months as their vessel practically flew round the course.

Also participating at Vilamoura are the sailing stars of tomorrow. In the Optimist class, entrants as young as 10 braved the choppy seas off Praia From page 1

Vilamoura where winds gusted up to 20 knots. Matters were made even more difficult when some of the stragglers were caught up by the leaders, meaning that boats were going in opposite directions around the same buoy, creating confusion and chaos. However, despite the occasional capsize, the youngsters managed to keep smiling. While the regatta got off to a flying start, with strong winds allowing competitors to achieve considerable speeds, some days of the event have been considerably calmer, leaving sailors struggling to fill their sails. Jon Rivelon Wilson