Meet Austria’s Youth America’s Cup Team

May 22, 2017

The first sailors ever to compete under the Austrian flag in the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup, the Candidate Sailing Team was founded in April 2016, when Max Stelzl [now the boat captain] and Roland Regnemer [team manager] met at a training session in Izola.

Just three months later, sailor and entrepreneur Dieter Schneider came on board as name-giving sponsor and mentor, and in Lorient, France last August the team flew on foils for the first time.

Back in Austria, they sailed an X40 on Lake Attersee until winter set in, and this year they’ve been preparing for the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup with the M32 Winter Series in Monaco and a one-month training period on Lake Garda.

Candidate Sailing Team

Lukas Höllwerth [skipper]

Salzburg-based Lukas Höllwerth is a two-time European Laser Standard Youth Grand Prix Champion and has won two Austrian National Championships as well. Born in 1993, Lukas was named to the Austrian National Youth Team in 2010, progressing all the way to the National Team. Lukas was a sailing athlete in the Austrian military and a professional athlete at the Olympic Center of Salzburg. He helped coach the Austrian Youth Team, and sailed big boats like the Melges 24. He also works as a law clerk.

Stefan Scharnagl

Born in 1995, Candidate Sailing Team helmsman Stefan Scharnagl started sailing at age 7 in an Optimist, and ever since he was 13 he has spent more than 100 days annually on the water. Stefan progressed to the 420 at age 15, switching to the 470 class two years later. The Mattsee resident, who has pursued studies at the Paris Lodron University in Salzburg, cross-trains with swimming and climbing, and he has made it his goal to sail in the Olympics.

Maximilian Stelzl

Born in Salzburg, Maximilian Stelzl grew up sailing in the summers, skiing in the winters, and trying a variety of sports – but sailing always took priority. The 24-year-old has sailed the Optimist, 420, 470, Moth, Melges 24, and Star classes, among others, and also shares his knowledge as a youth Laser coach from time to time. After finishing school, Max worked as an ambulance driver before taking up business and management studies at the Management Center Innsbruck, and he is also a ski instructor.

Matthäus Hofer

Matthäus Hofer is a four-time Austrian national medalist, clinching the Laser Radial Youth title and the 2016 national 49er championship, in addition to a pair of vice-champion results in the Laser Radial. A Vienna native who is currently a resident of Lichtenwörth, he started sailing at age seven in the Optimist, and now at 20 he owns a Moth. Matthäus studies economics. While he also enjoys sports including skiing, climbing, hiking, and cycling, his biggest goal is to someday sail for an America’s Cup Team.

Emil Huber

At 19, Emil Huber calls himself the “baby” of the Candidate Sailing Team, but he always gives his best. A Vienna resident who has extensive experience on the Laser Radial, he’s passionate about sailing and is thriving on the new experiences he’s gaining with the team.

Raphael Hussl

Twenty-one-year-old Raphael Hussl from Tyrol is a national champion in the 49er class who has represented Austria at the ISAF Youth Worlds. His background also includes sailing the Optimist, 420 and 49er FX. A resident of Terfens with a talent for wood design, he studies interior design in technical school and has also delivered impressive results in competitive climbing, including second place at the Tyrolean Climbing Championship.

Konstantin Kobale

Vienna native Konstantin Kobale started sailing an Optimist at age six, eventually specializing in the 420 before taking up the Moth. After working for a year on an ambulance, he began engineering studies in 2015, and in addition to sailing his athletic activities include skiing, hiking, and mountain biking.

Constantin Marsano

Born into a sailing family, Constantin Marsano started sailing the moment he learned to walk. In recent years the Vienna resident focused on the Laser and Hobiecat Dragoon, delivering good results in national and international regattas. Currently, Constantin is in the process of fulfilling his army service. In being part of the Candidate Sailing Team and joining the Red Bull Youth America’s Cup, one of his lifetime dreams is coming true.

Martin Neidhardt

Martin Neidhardt, 19, has experience primarily sailing the Laser and Melges 24. Martin grew up in the Carinthia region in the south of Austria, at Döbriach in the Milstättersee. He first sailed solo at age six, and his interest in the sport has only grown through the years. He currently follows a sports-based curriculum at Sport-Borg Spittal. He considers being chosen for the Candidate Sailing Team as one of his most significant sporting achievements.

Helmut Schulz

Helmut Schulz, 21, spent his childhood skiing and biking in the mountains near his native Salzburg, but when he started sailing with the local club as a teenager, he fell in love with the sport. He spent two years sailing the 470 professionally before enrolling in college, where he is studying sports and event management, and when the opportunity came to sail the AC45 on the Candidate Sailing Team while continuing his studies, he jumped at it. One of Helmut’s top sporting results so far was 12th place at the 470 Youth World Championship. He is also a rafting guide and goes crazy for extreme sports like freeriding, paragliding, and mountain biking.

click here Bermuda Youth America’s Cup

Read More About

Category: All, Sports