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National Open Skiff Regatta in Cagliari, Sardinia, Italy: Kiwis take the win

by Elena Giolai 3 Jul 2023 08:17 BST

Three days of high spirits and great fun in the mistral. This is how Cagliari reconfirmed itself as an amazing regatta field for the 100 young athletes of the Open Skiff class who, chasing the gusts of wind, competed in the 5th National Regatta organised at best by the Windsurfing Club Cagliari, in collaboration with the Italian Sailing Federation and Open Skiff Italia.

After a start characterised by a moderate southerly wind, the arrival of the Mistral, with its peaks of up to 30 knots on both Saturday and Sunday, turned the situation around, allowing the racers to express their skills to the fullest and to chase the boat's maximum speed, control their opponents, and have fun trying to planate and control manoeuvres.

Perfect handling both on land and at sea, coordination with the coaches and assistance, made more complex by the rush of the wind. "It was fantastic to see so many young athletes so motivated and entertained. This confirms the fact that commitment to sailing not only rewards in terms of results, but also allows one to express one's sporting and even interpersonal skills to the fullest," says Windusurfing Club Cagliari president Roberto Festa.

In the under-12 category, which the judges also wisely sent ashore on the last day before the course became too challenging and closed the regatta with 7 races, local Pietro Dedoni was overtaken by New Zealander Oliver Tiedemann, who came out on top with a hat-trick of first places, keeping Lapo Manigrasso of Circolo della Vela Talamone behind him. In fourth place was Alessandro Convertino of the LNI Taranto and fifth was Sabrina Celozzi.

Dominance of the New Zealand boys in the under-15 category, which closed with 10 races, awarding the gold to a very strong Brazle Ewan, the silver to Hugo Smith, and the bronze to Orlando Botha, who in strong winds routed their opponents. Fourth place for Antonio Simbula, strong after his comeback on Saturday, followed on equal points by Matteo Attolico (Circolo Monte Procida), first in the ninth race.

Among the under-17s, Niccolò Giommarelli (Club Velico Castiglionese) has six firsts out of ten finishes, followed by Domenico Schiano di Scioarro (Circolo M. Procida) and LNI Sulcis athlete Michele Lavorato, who took bronze ahead of Mavier Santos Ceccarelli of Club Velico Castiglionese and the club's Chiara Sussarello.

The next appointment for the Open Skiff class is for mid-July, on the occasion of the World Championship in Rimini, where the New Zealanders, who arrived in Italy a month ago, will certainly want to maintain this rhythm of results.

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