Hungarian surfers will be able to test their skills in a prestigious and large field next week in Balatonföldvár. The Raceboard World Championships, starting with the opening ceremony on Monday, is a great opportunity for the Hungarian competitors to gain international experience, in addition, on home waters.
"It is a huge step for our sport to organise such a prestigious competition at Lake Balaton" said Balázs Szalay, President of the Hungarian Windsurfing Association. “Raceboard is not an Olympic class, but it is a very popular category of the sport, and although we have huge challenges from organisation aspect, we have a fantastic partner in Spartacus Sailing Club. And it is even important, because if the event goes well, we can bid for hosting further international races in the future."
In recent years, the organizer Spartacus Sailing Club has gained a lot of experience in hosting international competitions: there were Star and Finn World Championships, Flying Dutch European and World Championships in Földvár, just to name the most recent ones.
As for the course: we are talking about a W/L course, which is perfectly suited for raceboard even in possible light winds.
"At home the events are usually organised on similar courses, which may not seem difficult at first sight, but obviously it requires special tactics from the competitors both in downwind and in the upwind phase," said Loránd Utassy, the national coach of the Hungarian surfing team. “The competition promises to be a very spectacular event, which is important, because we hope that it will attract more and more young people to the sport, especially, that we expect some success, even medals. We can find Bence Sánta among the competitors, who won a silver medal at the 2017 European Championships, but we can also expect a podium finish from Bálint Morvai in the U23 field."
Bence Sánta is not bored nowadays: he is currently competing in the iQFoil European Championships, which is an Olympic class, on Lake Garda, but he will get back home by Monday to continue racing, this time with a raceboard.
"Since I compete in the Olympic class, I haven't had much time to prepare for the raceboard, but I'm in training, so I cannot complain about my shape," said Bence Sánta. “It is always good to race at home, the silver medal I won in 2017 European Championships, is still a nice memory. I hope I can fight for the podium in the World Championships, too. The iQFoil and raceboard equipments are very different, the former is almost flying on the water, while the latter is more along the classic lines, requiring better endurance, but also allowing races in lower winds. We know Lake Balaton very well, that could be an advantage for us, the Hungarians, but all the competitors are experienced, so we expect huge battles."
The Raceboard World Championships will start with the opening ceremony on Monday, 23th May, then there will be three races per day from Tuesday to Saturday.