RS500 Euro Grand Prix in Bruinisse

RS500 Class action
RS500 Euro Grand Prix 2012 was held in Bruinisse in the Netherlands over the weekend of 12th and 13th May. Sailors travelled to Bruinisse from four different countries, bringing 19 boats and a lot of adrenaline to a windy start line on day one of racing. A strong breeze built throughout the day to create near-perfect sailing conditions for the RS500.

It wasn’t a surprise when Dutch team Barend Hiltermann and Max Blom – also known as the ‘bad boys’ – kicked off the racing with three bullets in the first three races of the day. Last season they were virtually untouchable in high winds and this year they proved they haven’t lost their skills! However, they had to work hard for the wins with some strong competition from Olympic 470 sailor Carrie Howe and F18 World Champion Mischa Heemskerk, who delivered an impressive weekend of sailing at their first RS500 event. Strong performers in the high winds, they took a well-deserved bullet home in the fourth and last race of the day. In amongst the action were former 2010 World Champions Tim Wilkins and Heather Martin from the UK, but they were unable to take home a race win on the day.

Swedish team Johan Rook and Malin Broberg also battled it out at the top end of the fleet, placing third in two of the races on day one.
International Chairman Michiel Geerling and crew Hilde van Susante were also placed consistently in the top six boats alongside family rivals Willemijn van Susante and Nick van Alphen.

Sailing in these heavy wind conditions was a big ask, and it was a credit to the fleet that they were able to complete four gruelling races on day one of the competition. Sisters Stephanie and Chantalle Grootscholten were the only all girls team, but that didn’t matter – they were on top form as they flew around the course! Martin and Axel Johansson from Sweden showed great determination to complete all the races despite their main ratchet block going astray in race one.

Day two of the racing brought very different sailing conditions with a maximum of just six knots of wind on the water. After sunbathing on the shore for the morning, the class eventually took to the water to squeeze in one more race before Race Officer Arky called it a day due to lack of wind. It was worth the outing for the top two Dutch teams who proved they could perform well at both ends of the wind spectrum, placing first and second. Johan and Malin sailed another excellent race and secured third position in the tricky conditions. The three Italian teams also had a chance to shine in the light wind conditions, placing their best positions of the weekend and making their coaches (who were spectating on the water) very happy!

It was fantastic to welcome yet more new faces to the fleet and, as always with the RS500s, there was a chance for some liquid networking in the evening, with a well-stocked fridge of beer, a lot of Chinese food and a marquee with live music in the marina to head to later on. Thanks to RS500 sailors Richard Rot and Marieke Gijzel from Aquavitesse, who welcomed all the competitors (and their families) to this friendly, fun event.

The RS500 class is hugely grateful to everyone who makes the trip to these international sailing events; this weekend we were especially pleased to see the Swedish and Italian teams who made long journeys to southern Holland. Sailors left Bruinisse at the end of a fantastic weekend meeting friends new and old. Everyone was talking about the next major event – the World Championships due to be held at Lake Garda in July 2012. We can’t wait to get everyone together again for fun on (and off) the water!

Since 2010 the RS500 class has been grateful to receive active and generous support from sponsors Magic Marine.

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1st899Barend HiltermannMax Blom1.01.01.0(3.0)
2nd926Carrie HoweMischa Heemskerk3.0(4.0)
3rd625Tim WilkinsHeather Martin2.02.0(5.0)
4th890Johan RookMalin Broberg(6.0)
5th37Michiel GeerlingHilde van Susante4.
6th965Willemijn van SusanteNick van Alphen5.
7th911Richard RotMarieke Gijzel(14.5)
8th007Luca CarliniRodolfo Rubino10.08.08.0(22.0 DNF)
9th818Richard MorleySue Morley9.09.09.0(10.0)
10th949Andrea AlinoviTommaso Gommellini13.011.0(16.0)
11th737Stephanie GrootscholtenChantalle Grootscholten14.5(15.0)
12th654Lennart van den doolFrank van Leeuwen7.012.0(22.0 DNF)
13th777Marleen BlomsmaJody de Jager8.0(13.0)
14th837Mark den HeijerLorenz Jahn12.
15th943Filippo BucciarelliGabriele Tropiano11.0(22.0 DNF)14.022.0 DNF6.075.053.0
16th670Martin JohanssonAxel Johansson(18.0)
17th928Rupert KnowldenMatthew Harbour(16.0)
18th961Giel BlokkerCorinne van Dalen17.016.0(22.0 DNF)22.0 DNC15.092.070.0
19th763Gijs van LieshoutKarlijn van den Boogaard(22.0 DNC)22.0 DNC22.0 DNC22.0 DNC18.0106.084.0
20th940Nicholas HonorOlivia(22.0 DNC)22.0 DNC22.0 DNC22.0 DNC22.0 DNC110.088.0
20th919Rainer MitterElisabeth Birkner(22.0 DNC)22.0 DNC22.0 DNC22.0 DNC22.0 DNC110.088.0

RS Class Association website