With the yachting season in Europe and North America drawing to a close preparations are already under way for next year's Olympic yachting events.
With the yachting season in Europe and North America drawing to a close preparations are already under way for next year's Olympic yachting events. And in the Soviet Union preparations as well under way--one of the most modern yacht race facilities in the world is currently nearing completion at the Baltic town of Pirita in time for the 1980 Olympic games.
SYNOPSIS: This is the site for the 1980 Olympic Yachting Competition--Pirita about six kilometres (four miles) from the ancient city of Tallinn in the Soviet Republic of Estonia. A brand new yachting centre is being built here with accommodation for over a thousand competitors, a large marina, control centre and an information area. The new facilities had a chance to be tested out in August when yachtsmen from all over the world converged on Pirita for the Baltic Regatta--an event which is rapidly taking its place alongside Kiel and Cowes as one of the principal events on the yachting calendar.
The new race control centre incorporates an electronic information centre which will be fully operational for the Baltic event. Computers will provide journalists with the latest information and a telecommunications system will enable them to relay the information rapidly to their audiences at home. The construction of the new facilities has involved a mammoth effort as many of the buildings have been erected on reclaimed land. A new road and bridge have also been built to improve communications with the nearby town of Tallinn.
Recreation facilities have also been provided. An Olympic village has been built to house the crews at next year's events and they should find plenty of opportunity to relax in the new bars and restaurants. The Soviet authorities are determined that everything should go smoothly, though of course they can't control the weather. Fog of a flat calm could well disturb the proceedings.
As with all Olympic centres, Pirita will have an Olympic flame burning throughout the competition--in this case it may well prove to be a useful marker for the yachtsmen as they navigate the Baltic.