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49er, 49erFX and Nacra 17 Junior Worlds at Gdynia, Poland

by 49er and Nacra 17 Sailing 12 Jul 21:44 PDT 5-11 July 2021
2021 Junior World Championship © Robert Hajduk

Mikolaj Staniul with Jakub Sztroch (POL) capped a wire to wire Junior Worlds victory by winning the final four races in a row. The 27 point margin of victory is the largest ever for a Junior World Championship. They had the advantage of racing on home waters in Gdynia, Poland, and took it with a scoreline void of any finishes outside the top 10.

The victory continues a steady progression up the Junior ranks for Staniul/Sztorch, as they finished eighth in 2018, fourth in 2019, and now a win in 2021. No 2020 Junior World Championship was held due to the lack of global travel.

"We were not looking at the overall rankings. We treated each race as a separate story and we approach each one with maximum concentration. We implemented this plan this attitude kept us moving in the right direction," said Staniul.

Keanu Prettner with Jakob Flachenburger (AUT) leapfrogged Hernan Umpierre with Fernando Diz (URU) on the final day with a 4, 3, 2 to take the silver medal by only a single point, with the Uruguayans settling for Bronze.

Prettner has a history of strong performances at the Junior Worlds, having been the overall leader and highest placing male/mixed team in the 49erFX in 2018.

In the 49erFX it was a second dominant victory for Jan Germani with Giorgia Bertuzzi (ITA) as they finished 26 points ahead of the next female team, and held off the male teams as well for a comfortable victory. They sailed all top 10's until the final race after their victory was already secured.

This is the second victory in a row for Italy in the 49erFX, as Alexandra Stalder with Silvia Speri (ITA) won the 2019 edition of the regatta. The future looks bright for Italy in women's skiff, despite the pain of missing 2021 Olympic qualifying.

Willemijn Offerman with Elise Ruyter (NED) took the silver medal while Marla Bergmann with Hanna Wille (GER) took the Bronze. Richard Schulthies with Max Korner (MLT) finished second overall, but mix and male teams do not qualify for the 49erFX World Championship titles.

The German 49erFX fleet is bursting at the seems with eighteen teams competing in Gdynia, in female, male and mixed combinations. The German federation began bringing large volumes of Junior age sailors together to form a large 49erFX squad, and then yearly adds new batches of sailors who age into the squad. Marla Bergman with Hanna Wille will be thrilled to win the Bronze medal and to beat so many of their squad members.

The Nacra 17 fleet was dominated again by another Italian team of Gianluigi Ugolini with Maria Giubelei. They won eleven of fifteen races to secure their second Junior World title. The pair were clearly the class of the field, leading two French teams that finished second and third.

Margaux Billy with Leo Maurin (FRA) finished second while Titouan Petard with Lou Berthomeiu (FRA) finished in third.

The 49er and Nacra 17 Classes would like to thank the Gdynia Sailing Days for a wonderful regatta in these challenging times for travel and large events. The sailors have dearly missed Championship racing and as the first event back in 2021, the team in Gdynia ran a wonderful set of races for the teams.

Full results available here.

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