World sailing

Solo Olympic trials underway in Valencia

World Sailing: solo Olympic trials underway in Valencia

by World Sailing/Sail-World.com/nz Mar 13, 2019 02:58 UTC
March 13, 2019

Devoti D-Zero – Day 2 – Single-handed dinghy trials – Valencia, Spain © Michele Tognozzi – FareVela.net

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Sea trials for the selection of equipment for the men’s and women’s Paris 2024 Olympic sailing competitions began on March 11 in Valencia, Spain.

The Real Club Náutico de Valencia is hosting an evaluation panel and sailors until Friday, March 15. During sea trials, sailors will sail and test the four boats pre-selected during the re-evaluation procedure. These include:

D-Zero, presented by Devotti Sailing sro Sailboat Laser Standard and Laser Radial, presented by ILCA Melges 14, presented by Melges Boat Works Inc., NELO and Mackay Boats Ltd. RS Aero, presented by RS Sailing.

Sailors from nine nations are in Valencia to test the boats. World Sailing has invited Member National Authorities to nominate male sailors weighing between 75 kg and 90 kg and female sailors weighing between 55 kg and 70 kg.

Sea trial sailors include:

Ash Brunning (AUS) Guillaume Boisard (FRA) Pavlos Kontides (CYP) Stepan Novotny (CZE) Christian G. Rost (DEN) Ben Childerley (GBR) Anna Munch (DEN) Sarah McGovern (GBR) Fatima Reyes (ESP) Tania Elias Calles (MEX) Mafalda Pires de Lima (POR)

Sailors will sail the boats daily, testing them in various conditions in Valencia, providing the judging panel with feedback on things like performance.


Melges 14 Video


Representatives from each boat will also be invited to present to the judging committee universality, measurement, quality control and cost.

It is unclear if all boats will compete in a combined fleet race so that relative speeds can be gauged.

Ever since the concept of trials to select Olympic classes has been used, particularly since the late 1960s, the fastest boat has always been selected, with the exception of the Soling, from three-man keelboat trials after the longer Etchells win, but the 26-foot-long Soling was nominated.

See video below of the Devoti D-Zero reaching 17 knots downwind in a cool breeze



Michele Tognozzi was at the tryouts for FareVela.net and submitted his impressions of Day 2

Day 2 of the Olympic Singlehanded Trials at Real Club Nautico Valencia continued on Day 2 in lighter winds of 8-10 knots in the late morning, then dropped to 5-6 in the afternoon before to veer to the left with a little chop. There were more waves than wind.

Day 1 took place in cooler breezes but with a similar feeling of relative performance with the Devoti D-Zero ahead of the Melges 14.

On Day 2, World Sailing continued with its unusual technical choice of not combining the four different classes and the trials continued in groups of four boats of the same class. The morning was devoted to testing smaller rigs for the women’s boat, and the afternoon larger rigs for the men. Separate sessions were held for each class.

Day 2 rig sizes for women’s rigs range from 7 to 7.4 square meters for RS Aero, D-Zero and Melges 14. The Laser Radial is 5.7 square meters.

The visual impression, with light wind and wind, was good for the D-Zero and the Melges 14, which had a similar speed upwind and better downwind for the D-Zero, due to the smaller wetted area and the best ergonomics ‘of the helmsman’s position.

For a Day 1 report and overview of FareVela, click here


Video of RS Aero



About the Equipment Selection Process

World Sailing launched the tender process in May 2018 which invited class associations and builders to bid for the men’s and women’s single-seat dinghy in accordance with World Sailing’s Olympic re-evaluation policy, detailed in Regulation 23.6 and approved by the World Sailing Council at the 2017 annual conference in Mexico.

Click here to view the tender document.

World Sailing received eight compliant bids and the D-Zero, Laser Standard and Laser Radial, Melges 14 and RS Aero were shortlisted as those that closely reflect the technical criteria of the event – easy to sail monohull, split hull dinghy with different rig sizes for male, female and youth sailors.

Following the shortlisting, in Phase 2, World Sailing made site visits to the manufacturers to confirm the information submitted, after which an improved offer was requested from each of them to deal with the supply of equipment to large events, accessibility to the market by new manufacturers and the standardization of equipment between different manufacturers.

The Board Re-evaluation Working Group reviewed the bids and recommended to the World Sailing Board that World Sailing proceed with the selection of new equipment with the additional recommendation that existing equipment (Laser/ILCA) be included as a full option in the process. The recommendation was endorsed at the 2018 World Sailing Annual Conference. Click here Click here to view the Re-evaluation Committee’s recommendation to the Board.

After the sea trials phase, the World Sailing’s Council will select the equipment in 2019.

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