470 Class Japan National Championships 2017 Kicks Off

470 Class Japan National Championships 2017 Kicks Off
YAMAHA 470 Junior World Series | 470 Class Japan Championship 2017 © Junichi Hirai

113 entries from 15 countries – two current 470 World Champions are taking part in the 46th 470 class Japan National championship. For women, it is 31st Woman’s 470 National title. It is great to see 28 overseas teams including Olympic medalists and both Men & Women’s current 470 World Champions (AUS and POL).

Wadaiko (Japanese Drum) by Zushi Kaisei High-School boys played to open the championship. Most sailors are ready to compete after two days of measurement days, except for two teams from AUT whose container arrived only today at 16:10. 470s were taken out of the container.

First race is scheduled tomorrow, on Aug 19. 113 boats are divided into three groups, and the qualifying series will carried on until five races are completed. Then final series will start for six more races. Only top 10 boats proceed to the Medal Race on Aug 23, while other boats are sailing the Final Race.

Tokyo 2020 is only three years away. Keiju Okada, who gave athlete’s oath, is current 470 Junior World champion, and representing many other Japanese University teams as the captain of Waseda University SC. Let’s see how the Japanese top teams match against Mat Belcher and Will Ryan, and the ladies against Agnieszka Skrzypulec and Pogon Szczecin.

16 continuous days of raining stopped today, and many teams went out for short sailing to check. It is very unique pattern of weather after 40 years. We wonder if this is what we expect for the Tokyo 2020? Only 470 sailors can tell.

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