Welcome to Yacht Club Imperia, Italy!
2009 Byte CII European Championship and YOG Qualifier for Europe
Dec 3rd to Dec 7th, 2009
Peter Batho, Hungary, and Sara Piasecka, Poland, win Byte CII European
Championship. 13 different Countries take the 14 YOG qualifier spots!
Click for final results Go to the Yacht Club Imperia website to see the Icarus Regatta Video!
There are also fabulous pictures of Days 1, 2, 3 and 4 by photographer Fabio Taccola at Picasa Web Albums on the Club's Photo gallery
Batho HUN and Piasecka POL win Men's and Women's Divisions
After the completion of 10 races on Day 4, Peter Batho of Hungary wins the Men's Division of the
Byte CII European championship and Sara Natasza Piasecka of Poland wins the Women's
Championship. The European Qualifier for the Youth Olympic Games was sailed as part of the
Imperia Winter Regatta with the Yacht Club Imperia hosting the Byte fleet of
76 Competitors from 30 Countries
14 places were open to qualifiers - 7 in the male division and 7 in the female. Of these 14 places,
13 were taken by different countries with only the Finns qualifying their country in both the men's
and women's disciplines. The regatta has qualified the following countries, but not necessarily the
sailors who were on the water in Imperia. The final selection of those athletes who will represent
the Countries will be made by the ISAF Member National Authority (MNA) of the qualifying Country.
Hungary, Finland, Italy, Germany, Norway, Russia and Spain
Poland, Austria, Netherlands, Finland, Portugal, Ireland and Turkey
On the left, Women's runner-up Lara Vadlau of Austria and, on the right,
the Men's Winner, Peter Batho of Hungary.
Sailing Day 4 - The Final Day
The Final Day of the Championship was sailed in the rain but, with the rain came much warmer
weather. The previous day had seen temperatures plunge in the north wind and the competitors
had been well bundled up, see below, so the rain was a small relief. Photo Fabio Taccola
The competitors were kept onshore by the RC until mid-morning and it looked like there might be
no sailing and the regatta wind up with only 7 races. However the RC found wind out on the water
and three races were sailed in light and tricky, but nevertheless fair, conditions.
The Men's Division - 43 competitors - 22 Countries
Peter Batho of Hungary, with a comfortable lead going in to the last day, started out with two poor
races - a 13th and a 19th, and needed to do better than 10th in the last race or the Championship
would slip away. He was 5th and, with the sailing of a 10th race, an extra discard kicked in and he
won by 4 points over Kaarle Tapper of Finland. Third was Italian Marco Benini who came on very
strongly at the end of the regatta finishing with a formidable 1, 2, 3, 2, and only 2 points out of
Two Singapore sailors Terrence Choo and Darren Choy, the current runner-up and Byte CII World Champions respectively, flew in at the last minute from the Asian Qualifiers in Thailand the weekend before where Choy was second overall but first amongst those eligible, by age, to qualify for the YOG and Choo fourth overall. Although jet-lagged, Choo and Choy finished 4th and 7th overall in the European's but provided a good benchmark for the European sailors.
Photo Fabio Taccola
The Women's Division - 33 competitors - 22 Countries
Sara Piasecka of Poland sailed a beautifully consistent series and, with the second drop in effect,
was able to discard her 11th place in race 9 - her only finish below 6th. She was equally at home in
both heavy and light air and, if she represents Poland in the YOG, she will be an early favourite.
Second place went to Lara Vadlau of Austria who saw any chance of catching Piasecka
disappear when she was OCS in the last race. Third was Daphne Van der Vaart of the
Netherlands and, in 4th, Finnish sailor Nikki Blassar who, with her compatriot Kaarle Tapper, were
the only competitors in Imperia both able to qualify their country for the YOG. Rounding out the top
5 was Najwa Jumali of Singapore the current Byte CII Women's World Champion who had also
beenin Thailad the previous weekend.
Photo Fabio Taccola
Disappointment for Slovenia
The final results were a big disappointment for Slovenia. The country's sailors finished in the 8th
qualifying spot in BOTH divisions - 2 points out in the men's and 4 points out in the women's.
Although both Luka Zan and Eva Paternelj had some good races - particularly Paternelj with a 2, 3
in the last two races - they were not quite consistent enough. However, they will certainly be looking
to qualify at the World Championship in Cannes in April which is a YOG Qualifier open to all
nations. The NOR for the Worlds can be found at www.bytechamps.org
Photo Fabio Taccola
A few of the teams at the Championship Photos Alberto Portiglia
Team Turkey: Pinar Kaynor, far right, 9th in Women's overall, qualified her country for the YOG
Team Russia: Dmitry Tretyakov, 8th in Men's overall, qualified his country for the YOG
Team Portugal: Melo Maria Pinheiro, in pink hat, 6th in Women's overall, qualified her country for the YOG
Team Italy: Marco Benini, seated fron left, 3rd in Men's overall, qualified his country for the YOG
Team Norway: Herald Faste, extreme left, 6th in Men's overall, qualified his country for the YOG
A Special Note of Appreciation!
The Byte Class International Association would like to express its sincere thanks to the Yacht
Club Imperia, its Officers and Volunteers, the Race Committee and the on-the-water Jury for all
their help and expertise in the running of this Continental Qualifying event. They have all
made it a memorable Championship and the Class is most appreciative.
Apologies but there is no report for day 3
The 76 boat Byte CII fleet was the first out on the water. After yesterday's blow out, the Committe
managed three races but only after having to abandon the first race at the weather mark as the
three fantastic races.
The first two races were windward leeward twice around and the third a triangle, windward
leeward. Three different winners in the men's division showed a good balance among the fleet:
Terence Choo from Singapore was the first winner of the day (after 4 races he sits in third
position); Hungarian Peter Batho, overall leader, won the second race and Norwegian Andreas
Begby, in fourth place overall, won the last race. Now sitting in second place overall is the German
sailor Florian Haufe.
In the Women's fleet, after four races, Poland's Natasza Piasecka leads, Austria's Lara Vadlau
sits in second and Germany's Constanza Stolz is third. Just two points behind in fourth is Finn Niki
With four races now sailed, the European title can be awarded as well as the qualification places
for Youth Olympic Games. See the Yacht Club site for results
350 teams from 27 different countries (Austria, Belgium, Croatia, Czech Republic, Denmark,
Estonia, Finland, France, Germany, Hungary, Ireland, Italy, Lituania, Monaco, Netherland, Norway,
Poland, Portugal, Russia, San Marino, Singapore, Slovenia, Spain, Sweden, Switzerland, UK,
Ukraine) are attending the Winter Regatta in the Byte CII, Laser, Laser Radial, L'Equipe, 420,
470 and 29er.
The Byte CII Training Clinic - Imperia � Italy 20-22 Nov.
One Step Closer
a report by Alberto Portiglia of Nautivela
European sailors are one step closer to the European Youth Olympic Games Qualifier which will
be sailed as part of the 2009 Imperia Winter Regatta. 75 sailors, 32 female and 43 male, are
now registered representing 25 ISAF Member National Authorities (MNAs). The top male and
female sailors from the first 7 different countries will qualify those countries for a male and female
place in the Games. Although the sailors in Imperia will qualify the country with their finish, the
MNAs of those countries will make the final selection of the sailors to represent their country at the
Games in Singapore, August 2010.
The final traiing camp before the event, organized by Nautivela and the Associazione Italiana
Classe Byte, in preparation for the European Championship and YOG qualifier was a huge
31 Byte CIIs in the water for 3 days of sailing in Imperia Bay
9 Participating nations (10 from Italy, 4 from France, 4 from Norway, 4 from Portugal, 4 from
Russia, 2 from Turkey, 1 from Switzerland, 1 from Czech Republic and 1 from Slovenia)
Wind between 10 and 20 knots all 3 days of sailing; nice sun on Friday and Saturday, partially
clouded on Sunday, daily temperature between 15 and 22 degrees Celsius.
It was a real pleasure to work with so many enthusiastic Sailors and Coaches. Some of them saw
and tested the boat for the first time in Imperia, but everybody was very excited by the technical
aspects of the boat and followed the explanations and suggestions on how to tune the rig with
This open attitude, together with the unique characteristics of the CII rig were the key factors that
allowed sailors of different weight and gender to compete with the same opportunity in different
wind conditions from almost the first daythey tried the boat.
SOME COMMENTS FROM COACHES AND SAILORS
Thanks for efforts to organize such a great weekend of training. We greatly enjoyed both the great
sailing conditions that Imperia offers, as well as the hospitality and open spirit of other nations
participating. It was great fun and really useful to sail together with 30 bytes.
I�m positively surprised of the joyful spirit of the Class since everyone was open, sharing ideas and
trimming tips, and always willing to collaborate. Although there�s a tough competition towards the
Youth Olympic Qualifiers, there�s also great fair play and sportsmanship in the Class.
I�m also surprised at the range of the Boat. The sailors I�ve been coaching are quite light and they
still managed to be competitive in the windy practice races.
Ezequiel Schargorodsky � Y.C. Geneve coach
The Portuguese team went in Imperia for the first 3 days of training in the Byte CII. We were lucky
to get all conditions from very light wind to 15 knots and a couple of waves to surf down wind.
Sailors got their first exposure to the boat and they had lots of fun. My opinion is that the Byte CII is
a fantastic boat. To sail fast, it takes skill as that is the most important thing rather than the weight,
or the strength, of the sailors.
From the sailors:
We enjoyed that boat very much! It is difficult to sail downwind but once you do it you get a lot of
fun! We are very excited to participate in the Europeans!
Francisco Neto - Portugese Coach
The Norwegian team for the European Byte CII Championship had one week of training in Imperia
with (past World Champion) Jon Emmett as coach. See photo below. After one day of sailing, the
sailors managed to sail the Byte well. At home the sailors sail Laser 4.7/Radial and Europa.
From the sailors;
" It was fun to sail the Byte, it is faster than the Laser 4.7 and easier to hike. Even with rather
different weight of sailors we had the same boat speed. "
Christian Begby - Norwegian team for the European Byte Championship
A special than you to all the sailors and coaches, and also to the MNA�s that have worked from
behind the scene to give these young sailors the possibility to attend this training and to participate
in the 2009 European Championship in Imperia. Most of all, a special thank you to the Y. C. of
Imperia for their great hospitality!
Looking forward to meeting you all in Imperia.
Alberto Portiglia � Nautivela