Sedgefield, the Slow Town of the Naturally Knysna, will play host to the 2014 RS Tera World Sailing Championships, 28 July -1 August 2014.
According to one of the event organisers Roeléén Schofield of N2RS, 52 young sailors from Europe and Africa have already registered for the championships which will be held at Pine Lake Marina, Swartvlei. Over 60 entrants are expected in total.
RS Tera is an ISAF International Class sailing dinghy popular with young sailors between the ages of eight and 18, and currently one of the fastest growing classes of sailing dinghy in the world. Boats are split into two classes according to the size of the rig.
CEO of Knysna Tourism, Greg Vogt said that being selected to host the world championships is a major coup for Sedgefield and the Garden Route. “Kudos to the main organiser of the event Cathy Avierinos, who is secretary of the RSA RS Tera Class Association and vice president International of the RS Tera Class Association, for working so hard to get the championships to South Africa and our region.”
Vogt said that the event will achieve fantastic exposure for the Knysna area in participating countries, including Belgium, The Netherlands, Great Britain, Norway, Denmark and Zimbabwe.
The event is supported by the three yacht clubs in the Garden Route area – Knysna, George Lakes and Mossel Bay, and a number of local sailors will compete in the championships including Georgou Divaris, current RS Tera World Champion (George Lakes), James Hellstrom, bronze medallist (George Lakes), and Megan Robertson (George Lakes and Mossel Bay), who qualified for the Youth Olympics to be held in China in August this year.
Four young development sailors from Knysna Yacht Club, Sanele Magqaza, Apendule Maneli, Sakhu-muzi Funda and Mzukisi Mayaty will also compete.
Schofield said that Swartvlei is the ideal venue for the championships. “Swartvlei has hosted many regional and national regattas and the water is safe and clean. Pine Lake Marina, on the shores of the lake, offers great accommodation, restaurant and other facilities for families and day visitors who want to watch the sailing. It is also close to all the accommodation establishments in Sedgefield and Knysna, as well as excellent restaurants and shops, and of course the beautiful lagoons, beaches and forests of the area, being within the Garden Route National Park.
“It should be a great event for both the participating sailors, their families and anyone who is interested in international competitive sailing.”
Sailing will start on Monday 28 July, following registration on 26 and 27 July, and the opening ceremony on Sunday 27th. There will be a total of 15 races during the week with the awards ceremony on Friday 1 August.
For more information about the race programme, visit www.rstera.co.za. To book accommodation in Sedgefield or Knysna for the championships, visit www.visitknysna.co.za or call Knysna Tourism on 044 382 5510.
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Knysna Tourism is the City of Knysna’s official regional tourism organisation, responsible for destination marketing, visitor and industry services for Knysna, Sedgefield and surrounds. For information, contact our Visitor Information Centre on 044 382 5510.