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2021 WASZP European Championships set to fly in Norway

by Marc Ablett 21 Jan 2021 06:46 PST 8-14 August 2021
WASZP European Championships headed for Norway © Marc Ablett

The 2021 European WASZP calendar has taken shape with a full card of events to be announced in the coming days. The flagship event for the season will be the 2021 WASZP European Championships.

After an extensive tendering process with a hot field of candidates, Norway has been awarded what will be the biggest WASZP regatta of the season. The event will run from 8-14 August, after the Olympic Games finishes and prior to the Danish SailGP event, at which WASZP plays an integral part in the INSPIRE program.

The Norway WASZP program has been on full throttle for several years now, leading the way in training and development for a huge number of sailors. Videos from the fleet regularly pop up online showing the Norwegians ripping in glamour conditions, leaving the viewer wondering where on earth the venue is and how they can get the chance to sail there.

This year, the cat is out the bag. Sandefjord is the answer, and it is a somewhat undiscovered foiler's dream. Sandefjord offers the perfect combination of reliable winds, flat water and spectacular scenery. Add to that the friendly hospitality, simple travel links and an experienced and dedicated sailing club and the venue ticks all the boxes. Situated close to the ferry terminal from Denmark, right next to the ferry from Sweden and a short drive from an international airport, Sandefjord is Norway's most accessible sailing venue.

The club, Sandefjord Seilforening, is split across two beautiful islands with ample space for boats, camping and notorious island parties. A scatter of islands sits between the club and one of the best foiling racecourses in Europe, with stunning views through 360 degrees. When up to 150 WASZPs come to town, expect competitive but friendly competition and inclusive socials against the jaw-dropping backdrop of the fjord. Once sailors head out through the cluster of islands onto the racecourses, they will soon see why Sandefjord has been chosen for the pinnacle European regatta in 2021. Sailing on the Norwegian fjords is a bucket list experience for many sailors and WASZP is making that happen.

The values of the Norwegian WASZP fleet epitomise the WASZP class ethos and there is no better way to celebrate this than to award one of Norway's top foiling destinations with the biggest event of the year. We believe that the Norwegian association, in conjunction with the class manager and the International WASZP Class Membership, will put on an amazing event that encompasses everything we know and love about the WASZP. Naturally, the pandemic has made international event planning difficult this year but WASZP remains determined to make the very best of the situation for the benefit of its sailors as it pushes forward with calculated optimism towards a better year.

2021 also marks the launch of the WASZP Class administration platform RaceHub. You can sign up to be an International WASZP Class Member (IWCM) and enter the event through the platform. Entries will open in early February. As with everything done at WASZP, it is about creating as much value for the sailors as possible. As an example, to ensure the sailors get the most convenient accommodation at the best value, the class manager has reserved camping spots and hotel rooms for WASZP sailors at a discounted price point, for which booking will all be easily accessible alongside entry through the event page on RaceHub. The platform is an all-in-one solution to make the admin easier, giving more time to focus on the sailing. WASZP will continue to work hard for its sailors and create great value for its IWCM's through RaceHub, with more announcements coming as we move through 2021.

The 2021 European Championships in Norway will be the centrepiece of a stacked month of events. In July we have the INSPIRE program at SailGP, Plymouth in the UK before moving to Travemünde for round 3 of the EuroCup circuit, onto the WASZP Euros at Sandejford in August and finally to the INSPIRE program at SailGP, Aarhus in Denmark at the end of August.

With a full card of 5 EuroCup legs, SailGP INSPIRE events and a European Championships, plus national championships across 10 nations in Europe, 2021 will be a fantastic opportunity to return to competitive large scale fleet racing.

For those WASZP sailors in other parts of the world, you can stay connected to the WASZP community through RaceHub where global rankings from every WASZP event will be online, Virtual Reality racing available and GPS racing open so that competition is still there for even the most isolated sailors. Stay connected until we can all meet again at the International WASZP Games in Lake Garda 2022.

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