Published: Monday, 21 December 2015

2015 will be a record year for the Youth Sailing World Championships (Dec 27-Jan 3) in Langkawi, Malaysia, with more than 430 sailors from 80 nations registered to sail across nine fleets.

Record Year For Youth World Sailing Championships

(2014 Laser Radial Fleet)

This year’s event will also welcome a record number of male and female Laser Radial sailors. With 69 boys and 57 girls registered in the division, this year’s class will boast one of the largest turnouts at the event.

Although the 2014 Laser Radial Boys and Girls medallists have aged out of the Youth Worlds, a number of Laser Radial Youth Worlds medallists are returning, as well as many first-timers.

Nanjing 2014 Youth Olympians bronze medallist Jarian Brandes from Peru will be joined by China’s Wen He, Hong Kong’s Jacqueline Truhol, and Shione Suganuma of Japan.

The Laser Radial Boys and Girls fleets also feature a number of sailors who are heading to the Youth Worlds thanks to their participation at the Youth Worlds Emerging Nations Programme clinics.

Sailors from Taipei, Pakistan, Kuwait, and Sri Lanka are among those participating in the programme.

Record Year For Youth World Sailing Championships 2

(Russia's Stefania Elfutina)

Russia's Stefania Elfutina will be returning to Malaysia to defend her RS:X Girls title.

The Russian makes up part of the 23-boat RS:X Girls fleet and she will be a strong favourite to retain the title she won at the Tavira 2014 Youth Worlds in Portugal. The RS:X Boys fleet will feature a fleet of 30 sailors and with no returning medallists.

"At the Langkawi Youth Worlds I will try to race as well as I can and maybe I can take gold again,” says Elfutina. “Everybody is going to be racing to their best so it is going to be very hard. I've been training in a lot of countries and doing a lot of events. It's been a good year for me but while I am looking forward to the Rio Olympics, I am concentrating on Malaysia. My coach and teammates have been helping me so a big thanks to them, we are working really hard.”

If Elfutina is to retain her title she will have to go through a string of strong competitors including Hong Kong’s Kwan China Ma, 2015 RS:X South American Champion Maria Belen Bazo (PER), and Great Britain's Emma Wilson.

Sailors will begin to arrive at the Langkawi venue on December 27 where they will receive the supplied equipment from Ovington, UpMarine, Nautivela, Sirena Voile, Neil Pryde and Laser Performance/Maclaren.

Record Year For Youth World Sailing Championships 1

(2014 RS:X Fleet)

From there, the ceremony on December 28 will signal the start of the Youth Worlds before racing commences on December 29.