Spodberg Returns to Defend RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup Title

Danish Optimist champion, Christian Spodsberg, has returned to Bermuda this week to defend his RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup title sailed in Optimist dinghies. Since his victory last October, Spodsberg has continued to rack up an impressive record which includes an 8th place finish at the IODA World Championships, a 2nd at the Lake Garda Meeting and a victory at the Danish National Championships. It won’t be an easy sail for Spodsberg as he finds himself in a competitive field of 45 local and foreign sailors. The foreign contingent consists of 16 sailors invited from 14 countries and includes the National Champions from Argentina, Denmark, Germany, Ireland, Norway, Switzerland and Sweden. The sailors from the British Virgin Islands, Holland, New Zealand, Poland, Spain and U.S. Virgin Islands also have impressive resumes which is necessary criteria to warrant the coveted invite from their national authorities to come to Bermuda. Four of the invited sailors are also female.

The Bermuda Optimist fleet benefits greatly from the influx of top sailing talent. For the local sailors aged 10 to 15, the regatta provides world- class competition in their home waters, an experience usually found only by traveling to a continental IODA event. The regatta allows Bermuda’s young sailors to instantly see where they sit on the international stage. Local coaches have an eye on a number of Bermuda sailors expected to give the invited guests a run for their money including RBYC veteran Campbell Patton and Bermuda National Champion Tayte Stefaniuk from the RHADC.

RenaissanceRe has generously sponsored this event for the last twelve years, providing financial support to assist with airfares for the invited international sailors, providing them with charter boats, on-the-water coaching and equipment required for competition. The visiting sailors stay with local sailing families, another important aspect of this unique experience.

Twelve races are scheduled to be sailed from Thursday October 8th through Sunday, October 11th, mostly in the Great Sound. The final race will be sailed in Hamilton Harbour on the Argo Group Gold Cup course just prior to the finals in front of the large spectator fleet.

More info and results at www.juniorgoldcup.com

2015PreviewJuniorGoldCupTitle

Photo Credit: Charles Anderson

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The Future Champions

The RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup, now in its 13th year, has become a critical pathway for Bermuda’s Optimist sailors seeking international competition and top level experience. The regatta brings the world’s best Opti sailors to their doorstep and allows the local sailors to instantly see where they sit on the world stage. The RenRe Junior Gold Cup has become the breeding ground for local match race sailors both in Bermuda and overseas. This includes 2014 World Match Race Champion Taylor Canfield, who got his first taste of match race sailing while in Bermuda attending the Junior Gold Cup from USVI.

RenaissanceRe has kindly sponsored this event since its inception, providing the support to assist with airfares for the international youth sailors and providing them with charter boats, on-the-water coaching and equip- ment required for competition. The visiting sailors stay with the local families of our youth sailors which is another important aspect of this unique experience. For the local sailors aged nine to 15, the regatta provides world- class competition in their home waters, an experience usually found only by traveling to a continental IODA event.

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Denmark's Christian Spodsberg wins the RenaissanceRe Junior Gold Cup

oct26 2champs sBy Laurie Fullerton

Hamilton BERMUDA, Oct. 26, 2014 - After three days of racing on the Great Sound, the fleet of 14 International sailors and 26 Bermudians met their final teacher - a tricky, shifty Hamilton harbour course the final challenge to the fleet. The sailors took it on and despite the difficult, light conditions, Denmark's Christian Spodsberg finished today's race in first place with 33 points and is the overall winner of the Renaissance Re Junior Gold Cup.

"The harbour was much more shifty and difficult than I expected and I had to fight my way up to the top mark where I was in fourth" Spodsberg said who won the regatta. "On the next rounding, through the gate, I was in first so that was very good. It was a great time here overall."

Bermudians placed well in the overall regatta with Adam Larson,13, holding on to his second place with 53 points. Larson sailed very well this week and also earned the award for top Bermudian sailor.

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