By Zbigniew Rakocy, General Secretary Europe
Over the last few years Snipe European Championship, which took place on the old continent did not attract a lot of participants. During our meeting in Cervia we had a heated debate on opening the championship to people from other than European countries and giving up quota for particular countries. The meeting participants were not unanimous- some of them opted for the status quo and the others wanted to change the rules. After the meeting, Italy put forward a motion to open European Championship. There was a vote on the issue which was in line with my opinion to open the European Championship. The majority of NSs from Europe were for the changes. I would like to express my gratitude to those who were for and persuade those against that the new form of the championship will improve the quality of the event, raise the number of participants. Additionally, it will enrich the event with the entertainment dimension, in accordance with our rule “Serious sailing, serious fun”.
With a low number of participants (c. 40) it is impossible to acquire sponsors, the media and prestige for the event. In 2012 I had a chance to observe European Championship in the 29er class. As the class is open, the regattas had a very good socio-cultural setting. The event attracted over 100 teams from all over the world. The 29er Championship took place in Poland and its prestige might be proved by the fact that it was opened by the President of Poland and Jerelyn Biehl (photo).
Let me emphasize again that it is impossible to organize a good event without the support of sponsors, local authorities and sailing organizations. To have fun and reach appreciation of sailors organizers need money in the first place- without it an event is one of many, easily forgotten initiatives. I hope that the new rules will enable organizers to develop the social component of the event and make it more attractive. I shall wish it to organizers and participants of all Snipe European Championships.
We also voted on the location of Snipe European Championship 2014. I would like to confirm that Snipe European Championship 2014 will be organized in Poland in Kamień Pomorski (a seaside resort in western Poland, near the German border). It is co-organized by mayor of Kamień Pomorski, Kamień Pomorski Yacht Club and Polish Snipe Association. It has been scheduled on 14-24 August 2014, open both to juniors and seniors.
I am sending attached the new DoGs for the next Europeans and European Masters.