Local quartet looking to shine in Argentina
Christian Ebbin, Magnus Ringsted, Nicole Stovell and Rachael Betschart will be keen to capitalise on their knowledge of the local conditions at the Semana de Mar del Plata Regatta in Argentina this week.
The Royal Bermuda Yacht Club Academy Optimist sailors all competed at the championships last year, where Ebbin, Ringsted and Betschart qualified for the gold fleet and Stovell for the silver fleet.
National Optimist boys champion Ebbin was the island’s top performer, finishing fourth in the 78-strong gold fleet, while Ringsted and Betschart also held their own to finish 24th and 39th respectively.
Stovell, the national girls’ Optimist champion, finished eighteenth in the silver fleet and 96th overall. Ebbin, Ringsted and Betschart are all making their third appearance and Stovell her second.
“By having gone there before they kind of get to the event and are ready to go,” Dede Cooper, the Bermuda Optimist Dinghy Association secretary, said.
The youth sailors arrived in Argentina on Saturday and were scheduled to practise out on the water yesterday. The Semana de Mar del Plata Regatta is considered as one of the toughest Optimist regattas in South America.
“The venue offers big waves and current, two things that we don’t have here,” Cooper added.
RBYC sailor Chase Cooper won the regatta in 2013.
The Semana de Mar del Plata Regatta is being organised by the Club Nautico Mar del Plata in conjunction with the Yacht Club Argentino and runs until Saturday.
The championships will serve as an ideal warm up for the island’s sailors for the 2020 Optimist South American Championship, which are taking place at the same venue from March 21 to 28.
“It’s not everybody, but it is a good portion of the competition that they will see in the South Americans, so they get a sense,” Cooper added.
“There are two good American teams there and the Argentines also use it for their trials for the South Americans and the Worlds, so it’s probably their most competitive regatta.”
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