Volos, Greece – Today was the first day of racing at the 2023 ILCA 4 Youth World Championships, hosted by the Nautical Club of Volos & Argonauts. Two races were completed in a southeasterly breeze, averaging 7–10 knots with gusts up to 12 knots. The day began with an AP flag under blue skies due to lack of wind, which postponed the first warning signal by about one hour. Once it was time to launch, the 437 sailors from 50 countries took to the waters of Volos with loud music playing and thunder stickers on their boats.
The 150 girls were split into two fleets, and after two races today, two U16 Italian sailors hold first and third place overall. Nicole Creati won her first race and placed second in race 2, while Clara Lorenzi placed fourth in her first race and won her second race. This continues the Italian streak of success in July, after 21-year-old Chiara Benini Floriani won bronze at the Olympic Test event in Marseille and remarkably, both gold medals at the 2023 ILCA 6 Youth World Championships went to Italy, as well as a silver medal in the girls’ division. Sitting in second place overall is Greece’s very own Kleopatra Anastassiou, who secured a third-place finish in her first race and won her second race.
The 287 boys were divided into four fleets, and Thailand’s Weka Bhanubandh made a notably strong performance on the first day by winning both races – an accomplishment only achieved in his fleet. Another U16 Italian, Lorenzo Ghirotti holds second overall after winning the first race and placing second in race 2 today. James Pine of the United States holds five points overall after winning his first race and placing fourth in his second. Pine is tied with Lithuania’s Erik Scheidt who finished with a second and third. Scheidt is the son of five-time Olympic medalist Robert Scheidt, a legend in both the ILCA and Star classes.
Two races are scheduled for tomorrow, 26 July. Organizing partners are the Hellenic Sailing Federation and the Municipality of Volos in conjunction with the Nautical Club of Volos & Argonauts and ILCA.