by Daniel Smith
Aquece Rio International Sailing Regatta will take place from 3-9 August from the Marina da Gloria. Finn and RS:X racing will kick off the the first test event of the Rio 2016 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
Guanabara Bay - Aquece Rio International Sailing Regatta 2014
The Medal Race Course, Pão de Açúcar, will be tested from the off with the Men’s RS:X kicking off proceedings with a 13:00 start line. The women’s RS:X fleet will follow shortly afterwards at 13:10.
Finn racing will start at 13:00 local time on the Ponte race area. Both Pão de Açúcar and Ponte are inside Guanabara Bay. Escola Naval is the third race course in Guanabara Bay whilst Niterói and Copacabana are outside of the Bay, all three will feature racing for the first time on 4 August.
A morning north easterly breeze at 4-6 knots filled Marina da Gloria at 10:00 but as the day goes on the wind will switch to the south east and is expected to increase from 7-12 knots before the day is done.
The Finn and Men’s and Women’s RS:X fleets strongly resemble the Olympic size, providing the perfect opportunity for the racers.
|Event||Aquece Rio 2014||Rio 2016|
Strength is evident throughout the fleets with numerous World Champions and Olympic medallists within.
Giles Scott (GBR) will spearhead the Finn fleet but will face tough competition from the likes of home nation sailors Jorge Zarif and Bruno Prada, London 2012 bronze medallist Jonathan Lobert (FRA) and the ever dangerous Pieter Jan Postma (NED).
The Men’s RS:X sees London 2012 Olympic Gold medallist Dorian van Rijsselberge (NED) among the entrants but with the likes of Nick Dempsey (GBR), Piotr Myszka (POL) and Ricardo Santos (BRA) in excellent form he will be hard pressed to assert his dominance.
Eight of the world’s top ten Women’s RS:X competitors are registered to race in Rio. No one has been able to take the bull by the horns and take command in the Women’s RS:X fleet in recent months. The Aquece Rio is the perfect opportunity for any of the 22-boat fleet to set down a marker in the build-up to the Santander 2014 ISAF Worlds and beyond.
RSX Launch - Aquece Rio International Sailing Regatta 2014