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The double Olympic medallist Iker Martinez, will defend his title as European Nacra17 Champion in Barcelona this week. 42 teams from 23 countries and three different continents are competing at the Europeans 2015, including 13 Olympic medal winners and over 50 World and European titles. Iker Martinez his crew for the Europeans will be Julia Rita from Menorca, a triathlete who returns to Olympic sailing. The championship is being held at the Barcelona International Sailing Center (BISC). Official racing starts Monday 28 October at 2 pm. 


Martínez and Rita are facing six days of tough competition, with very strong rivals as Italians Vittorio Bissaro and Silvia Sicouri, second in the world ranking. But also current European runners-up; Australians Darren Bundock and Nina Curtis, who between them won three Olympic medals; French Franck Cammas and Sophie de Turckheim, and New Zealanders Gemma Jones and Jason Saunders, fourth in the World Cup in July 2015. The second (and strong) Spanish team is formed by Fernando Echavarri and Tara Pacheco. Echavarri is the last catamaran Olympic champion (Tornado, Bejing 2008) and Pacheco won gold at the Nacra17 Europeans 2014 with Iker Martinez.

Marina Lopez, who managed to qualify Spain for the Olympics at the Nacra17 Worlds in Denmark with Iker Martinez, is not sailing. She’s concentrating on her physical condition at this moment. Because Martinez wants to make as many training hours as he can on his road to Rio 2016, he’s competing at the Europeans with Julia Rita. Rita sailed in an Olympic 470 campaign before together with Marina Gallego.


The Nacra 17 European championship officially starts tomorrow, Monday, September 28th, and will run until Saturday, October 3rd. The first race every day is scheduled to start at 12h00. The last day is reserved for the Medal Race, the grand finale for the best crews only.

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