Wollmanns set sail to take on Tokyo together
Cecilia and Michael Wollmann have set their sights on competing together at the 2020 Tokyo Olympic Games.
The Royal Hamilton Amateur Dinghy Club sailors are keen to represent Bermuda at the next Games in the foiling Nacra 17 catamaran, and have already mapped out a plan that they hope will culminate in a successful qualification bid.
The teenage siblings held their own, sailing together for the first time in the Nacra 15 catamaran at last month’s Youth World Sailing Championships in Auckland, New Zealand, where they finished eighth in a fleet of 20.
“This was my first regatta sailing with my brother and sailing a Nacra, so I was very please in finishing in the top ten,” said skipper Cecilia, 18, who competed for Bermuda at last summer’s Rio Olympics in the Laser Radial. “I enjoyed this regatta a lot and learnt a lot during it.”
The Nacra 17 class voted last October to become fully foiling, answering the supposed call of the IOC for sailing to have one foiling event in the 2020 Olympic Regatta.
The Wollmanns warmed up for the Youth World Sailing Championships by training in a more conventional Nacra 17 rig owned by the Bermuda Red Bull Youth America’s Cup team, of whom Cecilia is a member.
The Rio Olympian is now looking forward to gaining more experience in the boat as she and fellow Bermuda Red Bull colleagues prepare for June’s regatta to be held in the Great Sound.
“My concentration for the next six months will be the Team Bermuda Red Bull Youth America’s Cup team,” she said. “During this time I will get the chance to sail, learn and race foiling catamarans, which will help in my development for the Nacra 17, which will become foiling for the 2020 Olympics. While I am busy with the Red Bull team, Mike will be focusing on practicing on his Moth to get foiling experience.
“As the Nacra 17 is converting to foiling, they still have not produced the new boats, so it will be the end of next year before we are able to get our hands on the newer model.
“We will be looking to train as much as we can together in the summer and fall of 2017 and moving forward.”
Team Bermuda will ramp up their preparations for the Youth America’s Cup as they embark on a full-time training schedule, starting on Monday.
“Being with the Red Bull team has really helped with learning all about catamarans,” Cecilia said. “We have been practising in those [Nacra 17] when it is windy.
“But we haven’t really got too much racing scenarios, so that will be fun to do.”
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