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European Dream Cup: Time for the final series

by European Dream Cup 13 Jul 2023 19:09 BST 1-15 July 2023
European Dream Cup 2023 © Mars Entertainment

Five days of qualifying series of the first ever European Dream Cup came to an end with a violent storm on lake Garda yesterday, and the final series have started today with the 10 teams coming from 10 different Nations representing their Yacht Clubs divided into Gold and Silver Fleet.

This extraordinary event is a brainchild of the European Community with Erasmus +, with the renowned Circolo Vela Gargnano at the helm of the organization, was meant to sailors from across Europe, with the primary goal to foster strong connections among the youth through the sport of sailing while highlighting key themes of our time, like sustainability, inclusion and digitalization.

Everything evolves around sailing and learning to fly the state-of-the-art 69F, the only one-design, foiling monohull for crews. The 60 athletes who came to Gargnano were already good sailors, but for most of them, the European Dream Cup represented their first time foiling, which is literally flying on water faster than windspeed. The learning curve of all of the team was impressive, but like in every sporting event there is a ranking, and the five of the 10 teams made it to the Gold Fleet and will attempt to claim the title of the European Dream Cup, that will end tomorrow evening.

"It was almost unbelievable how fast these kids from 13 to 18 years of age have learnt the art of foiling!" acknowledges a very proud Dede De Luca, one of the main organizers of the European Dream Cup, very accomplished international sailors and founder of 69F Sailing. "Three Nations were particularly good at sailing the 69F, the Danish, Dutch and Austrian teams, other had more difficulties, but they all had a steep learning curve, so we are very curious to see how the final regattas will go, it will surely be an amazing show!".

Denmark, The Netherlands, Austria, Italy and Germany are in the Gold Fleet and Slovenia, Hungary, Finland, Spain and Bulgaria in the Siver. Unfortunately, today the weather was a bit of a rollercoaster in Gargnano. After last night's big storm, the weather today has been very unstable and despite the effort, the teams didn't manage to race. In the early afternoon the fleet set out to try and start the first regattas of the finals, but a thunderstorm approached from the north and forced the race committee to dock in and call it a day.

The volunteers and athletes then visited Gargnano and did a survey with tourists about their sport and food habits, which will then be transposed into a report to be presented to the European Commission. The final ranking will also consider the points that the teams will have accumulated by doing their best at the side activities like this one, or the Beach Clean-Up organized by the sustainability partner One Ocean Foundation, or the Kahoot tests after the seminaries held by the inclusion partner Insieme per Mano Onlus, or the one in which they had to write a professional press release, that you received a couple of day ago.

Tomorrow, weather permitting, the two fleets will get back on the water for the very final day of the very first European Dream Cup, and by the evening we shall know who the best was at managing the highly technological 69F on Lake Garda.

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