Sailing boats competing in a race

Sport Preview: Sailing

BenBowles Sailing 2 | July 8, 2024
Sailing is always popular at the Pacific Games: Photos: Ben Bowles, Samoa 2019 Pacific Games News Service.

DC Park, home of water sports at the Sol2023 Pacific Games, will come alive on Monday 20 November as seven nations ready themselves to compete in the sailing competition.

Australia, Fiji, New Caledonia, Samoa, Solomon Islands, Tahiti and Wallis and Futuna will all take to the waters just outside of Honiara as they aim to make their nation proud.

Sailing action on the opening day will feature events for both men and women in the One Person Dinghy – Individual Female, One Person Dinghy – Team Female, Sailboard Individual Lightweight Male and Sailboard Individual Heavyweight Male.

The format involves an opening series and a medal race for the top five boats. It is divided into a qualifying series sailed in a four-boat/board round-robin format. Groups in the qualifying series will consist of four boats and each team will be allocated a group to race in.

At the Samoa 2019 Pacific Games, New Caledonia topped the sailing medal tally with five gold, two silver and one bronze. Samoa also scooped a gold medal and two silver.

This year’s competition promises to be tough and exciting with nations sending well-prepared teams to Honiara. New Caledonia will hope to retain their titles from Samoa 2019, while Australia is sending an eight-strong sailing team and are potential medallists.  Past medallists Tahiti and Fiji will also have high aspirations. Solomons Islands cannot be ruled out as they aim to make sporting history in home waters.

With pristine waters and cool breezes, sailing promises to be an exciting event to watch across the 12 days of competition from Monday 20 November to Saturday 2 December.

Entry to DC Park is free, to encourage people to watch sailing for the first time. Competition runs from 10am to around 4pm each day (weather dependent).

DC Park will also play host to five other sports at Sol2023 – archery (21 to 24 November), open water swimming (25 November), touch rugby (27 November to 2 December), va’a (27, 28, 30 November and 1 December) and kayak (27 to 30 November) are also sharing the same venue. Entry is free to all these sports.

By Willie Fafale, Pacific Games News Service

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