SAILING FOR OZ: Whitsunday sailor Eva Lorenz (centre-left) and Chelsea Connor from Sydney (centre-right), were the only two girls to represent Australia at the 2013 Ssian Optimist Championships in Hayama, Japan
SAILING FOR OZ: Whitsunday sailor Eva Lorenz (centre-left) and Chelsea Connor from Sydney (centre-right), were the only two girls to represent Australia at the 2013 Ssian Optimist Championships in Hayama, Japan

Junior sailor flies Aussie flag in Japan

A 14-YEAR-OLD Whitsunday sailor has returned home from a trip to Japan where she ranked second out of seven Australians competing in the 2013 Asian Optimist Championships.

Eva Lorenz started sailing competitively at the tender age of seven and worked her way up from Sabots to Optimist dinghies, which she has sailed since the age of 11.

In January 2013, Eva placed eighth overall in the Optimist National Championships held in Tasmania, earning her the chance to represent Australia at the Asian regatta from August 22-30.

Eva, who studies Japanese at school, was excited about the trip to Hayama for what would also be her last regatta in the Optimist class. Soon to be 15, Eva is at the age/weight limit for the class.

Unfortunately, the light winds that prevailed over the Asian championship were not ideal.

"I was hoping it would be windy so I could give it my all but because it was light there were all these tiny kids overtaking us because they were better in light winds," Eva said.

Of the 105 competitors from international destinations such as Asia, the USA, New Zealand, Australia and the Czech Republic, Eva placed 44th overall, but ranked second among the Australians.

Looking back, Eva said this last Optimist regatta was a memorable one, not just for the on-water action but also for the people she met. She paid tribute to the many individuals and organisations that helped her on her journey, including her brother and coach Klaus Lorenz and sponsors such as Abell Point Marina owner Paul Darrouzet, the Whitsunday Lions Club and Whitsunday Regional Council.

Eva will now move on to sail 420 dinghies in partnership with another young Whitsunday sailor, Mjah Hewitt. The duo are already planning their next series of regattas, starting with an event in Yeppoon over the September school holidays.


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