Sedgefield is ready to host the RS Tera World Championships at Pine Lake Marina on Swartvlei which will start on Sunday, July 27 soon after 09:00.
The event is preceeded by a pre-world training camp which starts on July 24.
The venue, which boasts a history of many regional and national regattas, has clean, safe water, is not tidal and the basin in which it lies allows steady winds.
Although the event takes place in the South African winter, the temperatures are not much lower than those in Eastbourne, England, where the last championship were held. Pine Lake Marina has suitable accommodation, marina facility, restaurant and activities for children. The host yacht club is Knysna Yacht Club, whose coaches Dave Sheldon and Mike Pogodin have been coaching preparing local competitors for months.
According to one of the organisers, Roeléén Schofield of N2RS, there are 61 young sailors already registered for the championships, 37 of them South Africans, and the rest from participating countries including Belgium, The Netherlands, Great Britain, Norway, Denmark and Zimbabwe. Twenty four of the young sailors are from George, Knysna and Mossel Bay Yacht Clubs, including world bronze medallist James Hellstrom.
Knysna Yacht Club has five entrants, Sara Young, Mzikuzi Mayati, Sakhumuzi Funda, Sanele Magqaza and Apendule Maneli. The racing will take place in 15 races during the week with an opening ceremony on Sunday, July 27 in the evening, and a closing ceremony with prize-giving on Friday, August 1. Spectators are welcome and will have to pay a fee of R40 per person, for which they will be able to enjoy all of Pine Lake Marina’s facilities. There will be braai and entertainment on Wednesday, July 30.
The RS Tera is an international class sailing dinghy very popular with young sailors as it resembles a junior grade Laser Dinghy and can be in standard form or an enhanced performer, the RS Tera Pro with a larger sail. It is one of the fastest-growing sailing dinghy classes in the world.
Cathy Avierinos, secretary to the national RS Tera Class Association and vice-president of the International RS Tera Class Association, scored a major coup for Knysna and surrounds when she secured the championship for Swarvlei. The international event is bound to earn much exposure for the Garden Route and for Sedgefield specifically.
For more information on the championship, visit www.visitknysna.co.za.