Hungarian crew of Attilo Bakonyui wins the EUROSAF L30 Europeans on home waters

On July 20, the 2021 EUROSAF L30 European Championship concluded with three perfect races sailed in fresh winds. No matter how hard the competitors challenged them, the overnight leader HUN307 Tranquilo won the L30 European title for 2021. 

The final day of racing at the 2021 EUROSAF L30 European Championship was definitely the most exciting for many reasons. Firstly, the weather was fantastic with blazing sunshine and fresh northerlies of 15 to 20 knots making Balaton Lake a perfect playground for the 14-strong fleet. In such conditions, the crews received a chance to explore the full potential of the L30 Class. The boats reported to reach 20 knots of speed downwind. 

Secondly, at least four teams had realistic chances to win the event and another five were seeking to jump into top-5. As a result, the suspense was  felt in the air long before the racing started. While preparing for the day, the crews at the Spartacus YC piers were tense because the stakes were so high. 

Nothing was decided even for the overnight leaders HUN307 Tranquilo, who continued to dominate the fleet posting two bullets in three races on the last day. With DSQ discarded on the day before, the team of Attilo Bakonyui lost a possibility to win with a race to spare. That was good news for the HUN308 Present Perfect, Klaus Wagner’s GER31 and Ilya Kogan’s ISR15 crews. The UKR12 Tardex joined the medal hunt after posting second and fifth on the last day before the final race.

As usually it happens in those situations, the final race turned into several personal duels and everybody altogether were hunting the prospect winners. No wonder that the HUN307 Tranquilo managed only ninth finish in the last race, while GER31, UKR13 and HUN308 finished in top-3. Luckily, for the HUN307, even that didn’t threaten their overall victory. Well-deserved bottle of champagne was already waiting at the pier for the Attilo Bakonyui’s Hungarian team, as they arrived onshore. 

“We are very happy to win the European L30 Class trophy, – Bakonyi commented. – We were improving every day, but the last day was tough. We experienced pressure from other teams and luckily we maintained our lead”.

Meanwhile a severe battle for the silver and bronze medals was unfolding. Before the last race GER31 and an HUN308 were on tiebreak for second place overall. The crews were chasing one another and Klaus Wagner managed to overcome his competitors to round off the event with the bullet. However, that appeared not enough to take the silver medal from Peter Tenke’s HUN308. 

Fresh European L30 Silver medalist Peter Tenke commented: “Really this event was up and down for us but also as a member of the hosting club I am proud that Balaton did not disappoint the sailors. In three days we had different conditions, we started with light winds that was getting stronger each other day. This is fantastic opportunity for all the crews to adjust their settings and polish their performance. As a result, the fleet was tight at each mark, so everybody had a chance to improve”. 

“We are more than happy to win a medal at this Championship. We are new to the class and we are still learning the boat. – Klaus Wagner comments – Obviously we made big progress these days and today our downwind speed was incredible. Imagine, that we were penalized in the second race’s start and still were able to recover and finish fourth in this race. Mainly due to our great downwind sailing”. 

On July 19, here at Spartacus YC’s premises the class proponent Rodion Luka gathered the owners for the class meeting. Klaus Wagner was elected as the new Class President and other issues were discussed. 

“As a new Class President I will be seeking to enlarge the class geography and organize more international events at the best venues. – Wagner said – With this fantastic event at Balaton the bar is already set very high. With input from other teams we will try to measure up to our owners’ expectations”.

As the L30 European championship was held under auspices of EUROSAF, the organization’s Secretary General Doris Gstatter attended the event. “We are delighted with the level of organization of the event, – Doris Gstatter commented, – the racing was fantastic. The L30 class can really serve to promote sailing around Europe, as she is multifunctional. You can sail with family or race competitively – L30 is perfect for both”.

Full results