|PALAMIS, SPAIN-(3-12-2004) The 29th edition of the international Olympic classes regatta Palamós Christmas Race was presented today at the Barcelona International Boat Show.
During the presentation, the new Olympic classes for Pekin 2008 were announced – in accordance with the decisions made at the ISAF annual meeting in Copenhagen - and it was confirmed that Palamós will be their first event as Olympic classes. The regatta will be the first point of reference for the pre-Olympic teams towards the 2008 Olympics to be held in China.
The participating classes will be: Mistral men and women, Europe, Laser, Finn, 470 men and women, 49er, Star, Tornado and Yngling and the new proposed classes are Laser Radial (single handed women) and the new Neil Pryde RS-X sailboard for women and men.
The presentation act was attended by the president of the Barcelona International Boat Show, Enrique Puig; the president of the FCV, Segismon Obradors, the mayoress of Palamós, Mª Teresa Ferrés; the Sports councillor of Palamós City Council, Jordi Ors and the manager of CNCB, José Antonio Sánchez Blanco.
The Palamós Christmas Race is the only regatta of the Spanish calendar included in the Eurolymp circuit, a circuit formed by the eight main European regattas. The event scores for the ISAF World Raking lists as well as the European Olympic classes ranking.
Some Athens 2004 Olympic medallists have entered the event, such as Spanish sailor Rafael Trujillo, silver medallist in the Finn class and also silver medallist in the Laser class, Andreas Geritzer from Austria.
Palamós has always been a well known racing area in Europe and some teams also take the option of training in Palamós before the regatta.
Xavier Ribera, president of the Club de Vela Palamós outlined that the regatta is almost 30 years old and it is a consolidated event of the circuit. The Mayoress of Palamós, María Teresa Ferrés, said that Palamós was proud of hosting a such important international sailing event.