Two years out from the Rio 2016 Olympic Games, a collection of the world’s best sailors gather in Santander for the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships and the BBC will be screening live coverage.
The event in Spain is the first chance for nations to secure half of the country berths for the 2016 Games and British Sailing’s top brass, led by manager Stephen Park, will want their team to seize as many places for Rio as possible, in a sport which Great Britain has a huge Olympic tradition.
Over 1,400 sailors and more than 1,000 boats representing 80 nations are expected to attend the championships in Santander, with all the events sailed and the equipment used in 2014 exactly replicating those selected for the 2016 Olympic sailing competition.
British sailors are charged with stepping into the shoes of the likes of four-time Olympic champion Sir Ben Ainslie, who announced his retirement from Olympic sailing in the wake of his victory at London 2012, and this year’s World Championships may unearth the next batch of Olympic talent.
BBC Sport will be screening live free-to-air coverage of the final four days of the 2014 World Sailing Championships from Santander, as well as a special one-hour review show.
All the key events from the last four days of scheduled racing will be broadcast live on BBC Red Button with two hours of coverage from Thursday to Saturday start at 1.00pm, while four hours of live sailing will be shown on the final day on Sunday from 11.00am. Commentary will be provided by the world feed team led by John Rawling and Gary Jobson.
Ten world champions will be crowned over four days of live medal race coverage, with Thursday’s racing including the Laser Standard and Laser Radial classes, featuring Great Britain’s Nick Thompson and Alison Young respectively, while on Saturday, 2012 Olympic silver medallist Luke Patience, with partner Elliot Willis, feature in the 470 men class, with Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark going in the women’s equivalent.
A busy day of racing on Sunday rounds off the championships with British representation in the 49er class, featuring Dylan Fletcher and Alan Sign, Giles Scott and Ed Wright go in the Finn races, while Pippa Wilson and John Grimson pair up in the Nacra 17 class.
A week after the conclusion of the championships, a one-hour highlights show will be broadcast on BBC One at 1.00pm on Saturday, September 27, presented by Shirley Robertson, which will round up all the key moments from the championships.
Viewers with Connected TVs will be able to access BBC online content for the latest news, videos, interviews and highlights from the Championships.
For more information about the 2014 ISAF Sailing World Championships, visit the official website.
.Thursday 18th September DAY 7: Laser / Laser Radial LIVE: 1.00pm-3.00pm BBC Red Button
Friday 19th September DAY 8: RS:X Men / RS:X Women LIVE: 1.00pm-3.00pm BBC Red Button
Saturday 20th September DAY 9: 470 Women / 470 Men LIVE: 1.00pm-3.00pm BBC Red Button
Sunday 21st September DAY 10: 49er FX / 49er / Finn / Nacra 17 LIVE: 11.00am-3.00pm BBC Red Button
Saturday 27th September World Sailing Championships 2014 Highlights: 1.00pm-2.00pm BBC One