Dolce Vita is one of the strongest and competitive Russian sailing teams with extensive experience in participating in national and international regattas.
So, in the team’s best regatta list, the 17th place of the 2021 European Championship in the J/70 class in Copenhagen among 97 crews and a successful performance at the stages of the Monaco Sportsboat Winter Series of the 2021/2022 season, where the team became the “bronze” medalist of the second stage, performing in the same team staff in which it will take part in the Tenzor International Cup 2023. A large number of trophies and prize podiums are also on the personal account of each team member.
So, the composition of the team: on helm – Inna Balashova, tactician – Leonid Klepikov, trimmer – Andrey Dmitriev, bowman – Mikhail Yatsun.
In an interview with the press service of the Series, tactician Leonid Klepikov spoke about the team, its goals, and what influenced the decision to participate in the Tenzor International Cup 2023 series.
What attracted your team to the Tenzor International Cup 2023?
Leonid Klepikov: “Unfortunately, Russian athletes are still not allowed to participate in international regattas, so in order to keep fit, we decided to focus our attention in the upcoming season on participating in several Russian sailing competitions. Among them there is the Tenzor International Cup Series. The key factors that influenced our positive decision to participate were, first of all, the new fleet: the crunch of new sails is pleasing to the ear, all boats are competently and equally tuned, which creates equal conditions for all participants, as well as the high quality of the organization of the racing program of the regatta, which is rather an exception than the norm for Russian competitions. Secondly, 14 boats for the format of races with transfers is a fairly large fleet, which certainly improves the quality of races and the intensity of the struggle, for which a separate respect to the main ideologists of the regatta. And finally, we are counting on a strong list of competitors”.
Tell us about the composition of the team – who will be in what position?
Leonid Klepikov: “On the position of helmsman will be Inna Balashova – an amateur yachtswoman with almost 5 years of sailing experience, while sailing is not the only sport in her arsenal: she is fond of running, mountaineering and playing tennis. The rest of the crew are professional athletes. My position: tactician and adjuster of the mainsail; Andrey Dmitriev – adjuster of the staysail and gennaker; and in the position of the bowman will be Mikhail Yatsun, the youngest member of our team.
At the same time, Inna and Andrey are “old-timers” of the team, as they have been members since team’s formation at the end of 2018, and since that time they have been racing together in different classes of yachts: “EM-Ka”, J/70, MX700.
What sports goals does the team have for TIC-2023?
Leonid Klepikov: “Our current priority goal is to stabilize the crew in order to establish unconditional communication and maximum mutual understanding within the team, develop technique aspects, improve and consolidate skills in order to improve and professional growth of each crew member in their position and, as a result, the team as a whole, and TIC-2023 is an excellent platform for the implementation of this goals”.
Are you familiar with the water area of the Pestovsky reservoir and what helps to remain competitive in the format of races with transfers?
Leonid Klepikov: “The water area of the Pestovsky reservoir, although located near Moscow, is a fairly new location for sailing, inspite of the fact, that me, personally, had a chance to race here in 2009 at the “Bank Cup regatta”, but, of course, it gained fame in the sailing community and a “new” life with the opening here of the yacht-club Tenzor Sailing Club. All team members raced in Pestovo one way or another: Inna took part in the regatta dedicated to the opening of the Tenzor Sailing Club, me, in addition to the “Bank Cup”, participated in two stages of the Tenzor International Cup last year, Andrey Dmitriev and Mikhail Yatsun also took part in regattas held by the Tenzor Sailing Club in the 2022 season. I would not single out any features peculiar to the format of the race with transfers. As in any other formats, you need to be in the right place and with a racing speed in the starting line, pass the distance confidently, with the right wind and in the right direction, do not create situations of violation of the rules in the race, “do not be greedy” and make fewer mistakes than your rivals.”