To honour Turku’s European Capital of Culture status this year, Sail Training International organised a post-Tall Ships Race two-leg competition covering Klaipeda-Turku-Gdynia starting on 21 August. This gave participants in the TS Race, which finished in Halmstad on 8 August, time to attend Hanse Seil in Rostock on 9 to 12 August before the TS Regatta.

In the end 30 attended, mainly those on their way home to Russia, the Baltics and Poland, as well as a Dutch contingent. There were big Class A windjammers headed by the world’s two biggest and oldest, Sedov and Kruzenshtern, built in Germany in 1921 and 1926 respectively, with Poland’s Dar Mlodziezy and Frederik Chopin, as well as Gulden Leuuw and Thalassa from the Netherlands.

Curiosity was aroused by Shtandart, a 1999-built replica of a Russian frigate dating from 1703. About 350,000 visitors attended over the weekend of 26 to 28 August, which compared well with the full TS Race fleet when over half a million came.

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