Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Olympic Qualifying

I am always grateful for the contributions readers make to improve this sailing news blog, or provide more content. Pierre Marois (T22), the Star sailors Alain Vranderick and Philippe Hofer on one design, Tof supporting Lasers and Bytes, all the suggestions from many regarding Top Dawgs of Montreal Sailing, and more. Most recently the Walraven and Paul Davis. It improves the value for all of us immeasurably. Along with the BFD note, Paul Davis, an Olympic medalist, provided a little background on some of the pre-Olympic showdowns we have been covering:

In the RSX class for the Olympics, Canada had qualified as a country competing in the previous World Championship. This most recent championship decided who the individual competitors would be. "The top finishers, Nicola Girke and Zac Plavsic won the trials by being the top Canadians in these events" Our sincere congrats for them, and also a pip, pip, 3 cheers for Quebecer, Dominique Vallée, CarolAnn Alie-Rosenberg (3X world champ!), Shelly Foster in the womens' and David Hayes and Quebecer, Alain Bolduc in the mens'.

In the 470 class, readers of Montreal Sailing might be aware that BYC members Oliver Bone and Stéphane Locas will be representing Canada in the mens' 470. Therefore, the 470 World Championship of 2008 in Australia (action begins with practice race today) is less stressful for Bone and Locas. What it is, is the biggest showdown left before the Olympics, and an important opportunity for these sailors to hone their game against the best. There are a lot of veteran and current stars in both the mens' and womens' 470 to get humbled by.

As for the women's 470, Davis notes "the women have yet to qualify the nation, but in (hopefully) doing so in Melbourne they will also earn the right to be selected to compete in the games." It isn't perfectly clear from the regatta website, but it looks like something in the order of 17 of the many countries in Australia for the 470 World's, are vying for only 5 remaining places of qualification in Olympic sailing at Qingdao. Canadians Jennifer Provan and Carol Luttmer (sail 630) are making their bid here.

Go Canucks!