Caribbean conditions: The Bay of Lübeck

The 132nd Travemünde Week starts with the first races on Saturday. A moderate breeze from east pushed a wave into the Bay of Lübeck, which just built up steeply on the near-shore course. Reduced fields, reefed sails in the inclusive class and some breakage on the sea lane were the results. In the end there were up to three races in the seven starting classes on the list, which made the race committee around Anderl Denecke look very happy in the evening.

"Those were great conditions today. If there was breakage, it was due to the material and not the wind conditions. We can be very satisfied with this first day. We managed the full planned programme," said Denecke. Together with DSV President Mona Küppers, Anderl Denecke got a first-hand impression of the course. And the highest representative of German sailing was particularly impressed by the inclusive boat class RS Venture Connect. For the further course on Sunday a close observation of the weather is necessary, because the weather situation is becoming unstable.

Offshore Sailing
As the first fleet of the day, the sea sailors in the measurement classes took to the course. Three short races were scheduled by course manager Uwe Wenzel - with a lot of work for the orgacrews. "There was quite a wave. I think it was more exhausting for us than for the participants," said Wenzel. Improvisation skills were also required to start the day. Due to the lack of two course markers, two inflatable boats had to form the gate for the yachts. But that also worked out, so that the programme is well on course to be able to avoid even a possible thunderstorm early on Sunday. At the top of the fields are the favourites. In the ORC ranking, the permanent winners of the German Championships, the crew of the "IMMAC Fram" around Kai Mares (Dänischenhagen), are ahead of the runners-up of the 2019 European Championships, the "Intermezzo" around skipper Jens Kuphal (Berlin). The yardstick ranking is led by Stefan Meining's "Na und" (Lübeck).

For the Trias sailors, who mainly come from the inland areas, the Travemünde Week is always a special experience. However, two crews had to pay tribute to the Baltic Sea swell in the middle of the Bay of Lübeck and had to abandon the sails after the first race. The other trios went over the course one more time. The Swiss Mario Fattorini from Lake Thun, already on top of the TW podium two years ago and thus the defending champion, is currently in the lead - tied on points ahead of the Lake Constance crew around Wolfgang Mohr.

Only a small field of small J boats came to the German Open in Travemünde this year. "This year is going differently than planned, but that is true for many other classes as well. Even the usually booming J/70s only managed to get a small championship field together for Warnemünde Week this year," reports Thomas Lösch, the treasurer of the J/22 class and currently TW leader after the first day. In the coming years, he hopes for an upswing again: "This time it was probably difficult for many with the holiday planning. But in two years we would like to come to TW with at least 25 boats, with participants from France, the Netherlands, the USA, Canada and the Cayman Islands." The reason is the World Championship, which has just been awarded to Travemünde for 2023.

"It was a brilliant combination of wind and wave today," reported Hamburg's Dirk Sievers enthusiastically. "Caribbean sailing conditions, really great. We had some nice waves on the course to ride off." After two races, he leads the field of Finns ahead of former Starboat World Champion Kai Falkenthal (Kiel). Sievers: "I am very satisfied. It's my third regatta of the year and I want to be in the top ten here." His recipe for success in the steady winds of the first day: sail clear quickly, concentrate on speed. Tactical refinements did not come into play on this day without major wind shifts.

The two ILCA classes sailed one race more than the Finns. In the group of sailors with the 6m² sail, Bernardo Low-Beer proved to be in a class of his own. Three starts, three victories are on the list for the man from Potsdam, who competes under the Brazilian flag. With three second places, Thorsten Wyk is hot on his heels. Things are a little more mixed in the ILCA 7. Finn Dietmair (Seebruck) is just one point ahead of Thomas Mueller from Laacher See.

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