Thai Weka Bhanubandh wins the 70th Ciutat de Palma Trophy
The Asian sailor prevailed in the Optimist class on a final day in which low intensity southwest winds were recorded. Neus García and María Teresa Martín have achieved victory in the 29er category and Daniel Cardona, in ILCA 4
Today, the Thai sailor Weka Bhanubandh was proclaimed champion of the 70th Ciutat de Palma de Vela Trophy in the Optimist class after demonstrating his mastery in all kinds of conditions. The Asian athlete, who traveled 9,500 kilometers to start his tour of different European regattas in Mallorca, won four of the six races, was second in the fourth and fifth in the last, when he was already the mathematically winner of the competition organized by the Real Club Nautical of Palma.
The Andalusian Roberto Aguilar, second classified, was only one point behind the winner and made equally clear his effectiveness with very hard winds, such as those registered yesterday, and with the medium breezes that today allowed the dispute of three comfortable tests in the Bay of Palma. Third place went to the Danish Frederik Wolff, who was disqualified by black flag in the fifth round deprived him of fighting for victory until the end.
The Committee’s boat left the Bahía de Palma regatta course early to check the weather conditions in order to make the most of the final day of the 70th Ciutat de Palma Trophy. However, the athletes had to wait until 11 in the morning for a southwest of about seven knots to be engaged, which allowed them to start starting.
Throughout the day, various roles and changes in the intensity of the wind were recorded, which ranged from six to twelve knots, but the good work of the RCN Palma technical team allowed the completion of two heats for the ILCA 4 class, three for the Optimists. and four tests for the 29er category.
Neus García and María Teresa Martín (RCN Palma) were proclaimed 29er champions after tracing the advantage taken by their teammates Marina Conde and Melania Henke, leaders at the end of the first day and for much of the second. García and Martín asserted their greatest consistency with a record of results that did not include any partial triumphs but also no finishes below third place. The RCN Valencia crew made up of Sara and Isabel Momplet achieved third place overall.
The ILCA 4 class recorded an exciting duel for the triumph of two Mallorcan sailors. Daniel Cardona, from CN s’Arenal, and Juan Tomás Verdera, from Club Marítimo de San Antonio de la Playa, reached the final sleeve practically tied in the general classification. The victory was finally for Cardona by a single point difference, after adding a second in the last race. The podium was completed by another representative of the Can Pastilla club, Alberto Talens, who finished in third position.
The 70th Ciutat de Palma Trophy, created in 1950 and which only missed the 2020 event due to the pandemic, has been confirmed for yet another year as one of the great European grassroots sailing regattas, with the participation of more than 400 athletes from 10 countries.
Biranubongse Bahnubandh, coach and father of the absolute winner, highlighted the hospitality of the Real Club Náutico de Palma, as well as the good level and “magnificent” organization of the regatta: “The RCNP sent us an email months ago and asked us if we wanted to participate. We felt that Palma was very far away and that at that time it was complicated by all the restrictions, but in the end we realized that this is a great event and that it was worth the effort. We are very happy to have encouraged us to travel from Thailand to Mallorca ”.
Another Spanish-German coach, Riky Stadel, praised the organization and the excellent conditions offered by the Bay of Palma, even in December: “Germans, Danes and athletes from other countries can reach Palma in two and a half hours, and here Except for the first day, when the day had to be suspended due to excess wind, we have always had magnificent weather, with that sun that they miss so much there, and all kinds of wind. This allows us to train in different conditions, while in those countries they stopped sailing for a long time because it gets dark very early ”.
This year’s competition has consisted of six tests for the Optimists and five for the ILCA 4 and 29er classes. The initial day, in effect, had to be suspended due to excess wind, with gusts that reached 20 knots. On Monday, finally, the 70th Ciutat de Palma Trophy was able to premiere with hard wind from the NW. Today the competition came to an end with a southern component breeze.
The awards ceremony took place this afternoon at the facilities of the Real Club Náutico de Palma. At the closing ceremony, the Councilor for Sports of the City Council of Palma, Francisco Ducros; the president of the Balearic Sailing Federation, Cati Darder; the commander of the Naval Sector in the Balearic Islands, Dámaso Berenguer; Lieutenant Colonel García Hernando; the president of the Real Club Náutico de Palma, Emerico Fuster; and the entity’s sailing member, Hugo Ramón.