Byte CII World Championships - When, due to lack of wind, nothing important happened on the water on day two, it gave the YC de Cannes news reporter a chance to sit with a couple of coaches that are here with teams from smaller countries. Dino Weber and Brother Pablo, both from the Argentine, are resident coaches in Bermuda but are also coaching the US Virgins, the Netherlands Antilles and the Dominican Republic. As the reporter spoke with these coaches, there is still a lot of sailing to be done but the Dominican Republic sits in the sixth qualifier spot (BER, AHO and ISV are already qualified).
Interview with Dino
Dino, we understand this is not your first experience coaching the CII.
Four years ago I started coaching the Bermudans, then came tems from Curacao, Dominican Republic, US Virgin Islands, US and Canada.
Are you here in Cannes coaching all those teams?
Yes, except the US and Canadians.
What about the ISAF choice of the CII for the Youth Olympic Games? Was it a good or bad one?
You know, the rig is amazing. It looks easy but it’s not, it’s very technical and that makes it challenging and a good choice as an Olympic boat. It even has a very good potential as an Olympic female boat because this rig can be very competitive for a wide weight range of sailor and there are no other boats like this.
How did your guys approach the boat or did they already have some experience with it?
With the Bermuda team we started in August 2009. The kids took to the boat right away because, even though it’s a technically difficult boat, it’s not impossible to learn how to sail it, and that made it an attractive challenge for them. Of course they have made a lot of progress since then.
Is there a good age for the kids to start or are they are all mostly experienced Optimist sailors?
Mostly experienced Opti sailors. This boat is a very technical platform and, in the Optimist, you should know that they are already starting to become very technical so this makes it the perfect progression from the Optimist.
Are your sailors qualified for the Olympics?
Yes. Bermuda, US Virgins, Curacao for the males; Canada and US for the females. The Dominican lad is still trying but I am told he is presently sitting among the qualifiers.
Is there any problem in adapting to a Charter boat as you really have no option?
Not really, they are just the same as ours at home. The sails may show signs of wear but the Mylar fabric always holds its shape well. The possibility to charter and have a close-to-identical boat makes things very easy for teams in terms of organization.
Will you be coming to the Europeans at Garda?
No. Unfortunately this event overlaps with important school dates so the kids can’t be there. They would be there if it was left to them!!
Would you consider participating more in Europe if there was a full program of regattas?
Yes, for sure.
You and Pablo have done Optimist events all over the world - what’s your impression of this event in Cannes?
The organization is excellent, everybody is very friendly and you couldn’t ask for more. The administration of this Class is very personal and friendly and this combined with the efficient regatta management of the Yacht Club in such a nice atmosphere is making the regatta competitive but very friendly. It’s great to see so many different nations; many small countries that normally don’t race in more popular Classes are here and the level of sailing is very high.
Correction! In previous Event News items we mistakenly identified current Women's race leader Niki Blassar and her teammate Kaarle Tapper as bring from Norway. In fact, they are from Finland. We also identified Celine Carlsen as being from Sweden whereas she is Danish. Our sincere apologies. Editor.