There will be an RYA Mark Layer Course taking place at Largs SC on 2-3 December. Application forms can be seen on the RYA UK Website CLICK HERE
More information on the RYA Mark Layer Scheme can be seen by clicking HERE
sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae and RYA Scotland have been working with the Board of Directors of the Scottish Sailing Institute (SSI) to develop a sustainable Scotland wide training & event resource for 2017 and beyond. These new arrangements will enable clubs and classes, through out Scotland, access to world class race management and training and event support.
Cumbrae understands that clubs & classes have very “bespoke” requirements for race management and training and also the hire of equipment for their events. For this reason Cumbrae are encouraging clubs & classes to contact the Centre directly to discuss their requirements. With further discussions a “package” will then be worked on to meet the bespoke requirements.
Further to this, by utilising the marketing support available through sportscotland, Cumbrae & Inverclyde and RYA Scotland and engaging with interested organisations and clubs, continued efforts will be made to bring water sports events to Scotland, so making the most of Scotland’s naturally varied locations, complementing the world class championship facilities in Largs.
The SSI “brand” will still be nationally & internationally promoted due to its track record and reputation of organising world class events, whilst in 2017 operating within the work of Cumbrae.
Further details on how to access the support and resources available will be found from 1st April 2017 on this website.
As a result of a challenging financial environment, the board of directors of The Scottish Sailing Institute (SSI) has agreed to merge the SSI with the sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae in order to sustain a Scotland wide event resource for the future. The new arrangements will ensure the SSI continues to work closely with RYA Scotland, clubs and classes to provide world class event support through out Scotland.
Utilising the marketing support available through Inverclyde and RYA Scotland, the SSI will continue to seek to bring sailing events to Scotland making the most of Scotland’s naturally varied locations and the world class championship facilities in Largs.
Continued support will include race management training, event consultancy and physical resources to enable clubs all across Scotland to benefit from the world class water sports event management experience held within the SSI. Coordination of race management training will be undertaken by RYA Scotland and will enable more courses to be delivered across Scotland. The physical resources will be accommodated by sportscotland in its facilities at Cumbrae & Inverclyde, in Largs and will be available for hire in 2017.
Further details on how to access the support and resources available will be found on the Cumbrae Website in 2017. www.nationalcentrecumbrae.org.uk
The SSI Board is confident that these changes will secure the skills, experience and resources of the SSI for the future and will ensure Scotland continues to attract events to our shores.
Quote from John Kent – Principal sportscotland National Centre Inverclyde & Cumbrae.
The merger is a great opportunity for Scottish sailing to take advantage of the skills & equipment developed over 17 years of operation. By joining the SSI with sportscotland and working closely with RYA Scotland the SSI will be able to offer a truly Scottish service in 2017. sportscotland, Event Scotland and the RYA& RYA(S) will be working closely together to also attract major sailing event s to Scotland and Largs. 2017 sees the SSI expanding its horizons for the benefit of Scottish sailing.
Quote James Allan of RYA Scotland
The SSI has been a key element in securing major sailing events for Scotland over the years. I am pleased that the partners have been able to come together and find an arrangement that keeps the core elements of the SSI available for everyone to benefit from and maintains the commitment to Largs as the premier location in Scotland for major national and international sailing events.
Quote Ewan Macpherson Commodore of Largs Sailing Club.
Largs Sailing Club looks forward to continuing to work closely with RYA Scotland, sportscotland, the Scottish Sailing Institute, Largs Yacht Haven and other partners, building upon almost two decades of success in the hosting and delivering almost 200 major Scottish, UK and World Championship sailing events. Together with contributions from across Scotland we have forged a world class team with a reputation which extends across the oceans. We look forward to working closely with all of our partners to build upon this success into the future.’
Quote from Carolyn Elder of Largs Yacht Haven (Scottish Sailing Institute Board member).
Largs Yacht Haven will continue to work with the Scottish Sailing Institute, RYA Scotland and sportscotland to attract sailing events to Largs. The facilities at Largs are world class and we will continue to work collectively to ensure we remain on the world stage.
In 1999 the Royal Yachting Association (RYA) chose Largs as the location for the Scottish “Centre of Excellence” and the Scottish Sailing Institute (SSI) was created to attract events to Scotland, coordinate large championship events and race training activity and promote Largs as a major International championship venue.
Since then the SSI has successfully organized over 200 events from World Championships to Class Championships which have hosted over 25,000 competitors on the Clyde.
Additional information required contact;
John Kent Chair Scottish Sailing Institute.
The RYA Zone Championships held at Largs on 24/25 September brought not only some of the best young sailors to the Championships Club but also brought two of Scotland’s Olympic Squad members, Luke Patience and Charlotte Dobson to the event.
Whilst the first day of the event was called off for too much wind. Whilst the one hour postponement was in place sailing enthusiasts young and old were regaled by stories and top tips from the Olympic sailors. Luke Patience, one half of the GBR 470 team enthralled with his Olympic memories and also gave tips on avoiding sharks to one young sailor.
Charlotte Dobson, one half of Team GB’s 49er FX class was just as inspiring, talking about and answering questions on her experiences at the south American event as well as her experiences sailing. Charlotte said “it is great to be back in Largs, where it all started”.
The Olympians were also on hand on Sunday to coach the competitors and give advice on better sailing.
The Scottish contingent were at it again last week giving their expertise to help run the Sailing World Cup event held at Weymouth on the south coast of England.
The SSI’s David Kent and Stuart White as well as Cumbrae’s David Frame, Andy Gibb and Tom Thurlow, Largs Sailing Club’s Alastair Leicester and RYA Scotland’s Matt Toynbee all helped with running the race management, mark laying and safety at the 2012 Olympic venue.
The event brought some of the world’s best sailors to the UK and Team GBR didn’t disappoint taking 13 medals in total.
For all the results please visit the World Sailing Website.
Congratulations to the Prizewinners and competitors that took part in the Scottish Windsurfing Championships 2016 pictured above. The Championship was hosted by the SSI and Largs SC, full results and more images can be seen at the event webpage.
The SSI Team were involved in not one but two events this weekend! The SSI’s David Kent was Race Officer at the RYA Scotland Spring Championships held at Loch Venachar whilst the institute’s Stuart White ran a Regional Mark Laying Seminar at Largs.
The Spring Championships saw some interesting races taking place. Each fleet managed to get in 5 races over the two day event. The sailors faced some fun but shifting conditions. Hannah Scott took first place in the Optimist class with Scott Forbes coming a close second whilst Calum Bell took 1st place in the Topper class.
Meanwhile the RYA Regional Mark Layer Seminar was held in Largs over the weekend. Stuart White and Martin Stephens instructed the nine candidates who were being put through their paces both on and off the water, looking at modern techniques and skills needed for events.
The Seminar brought people from club and Race Official backgrounds to show them the best strategies, methods and systems for working at both club and National events.
Photo courtesy of David Frame
The SSI attended the RYA National Youth Championships in Pwllheli this week. The 5 days of racing is the highest level event for many young people and brings fun and competitive rivalry out in all. The Scottish Sailing Institute were helping with other race officials and RYA Scotland members to help the event in Race Management, Mark Laying and safety support.
The SSI is proud to announce the publication of the Notice of Race for the RS200 Sprint Series, D-Zero/Vortex Traveller Series and the Scottish Windsurfing Championships 2016.
Please click the Links below:
The 2016 RYA Regional Race Management, Judges and Umpires Conference will take place on 20 FEB 2016 at Largs Sailing Club. To Apply please visit the RYA Race Officials page
Congratulations to all the winners from Largs Sailing Club who had their annual prize giving ceremony after a great year of sailing.
Prize winners from left to right, Mark Edwards, Howard Smallwood, Martin Faulkner, Bill Forsyth, Jamie Briggs, David Kent and John Bassett
The RYA Scotland Winter Championships at Largs/ SSI in December was the final RYA Scotland event of the calendar year. This year the event was akin to a Sprint Championships, with race target times of just ten to twenty minutes. The challenge was getting the most out of light shifty conditions.
Nearly ninety boats and boards across the RYA junior and youth classes entered the event, a record number for the Winter Championships. It follows on from strong attendance over the year when two RYA Scotland events attracted over one hundred boats.
Head coaches from each class gave input to the sailors ashore and afloat. Light conditions saw many fleets start their racing on the Saturday morning, with the double handers starting later, and sailing under PY in a mixed fleet.
Three races were completed across the afternoon until the light faded leaving the double handers needing one race on the Sunday. For these sailors their hopes were met with the double handers getting in the only race of the day on Sunday morning.
Sailors of the other classes enjoyed snowball fights meanwhile, but no wind arrived, so results from the Saturday became final. Gordon Cogan-Sivarajan, Lorcan Knowles, Jamie Calder and Dugal Wilson took victory in the Optimist, Topper, Laser Radial and Laser Standard classes respectively.
Jamie Calder said, “It’s a good boost halfway through the winter, it keeps the motivation going through training.” Laser standard winner Dugal praised the “opportunities on the small course to work on positioning and modes of sailing.”
A "dream" sea race to one of the most remote outposts of the UK has been launched Comann na Mara. The Scottish Sailing Institute is lending a helping hand to run the race around the small Island of St Kilda located 40 miles west of North Uist.
The St Kilda Challenge will see the first-ever yacht race from North Uist to St Kilda and back again, covering about 100 nautical miles.
The Race to one of Scotland's remotest islands is scheduled to take place in June 2016. The three day event will see yachts race to the cay from Lochmaddy on the Isle of North Uist with a Sail Procession before the race itself.
The SSI's partner sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae has launched it's extensive array of courses for 2016.
If you would like to know more about the training and facilities sportscotland Cumbrae has on offer please click here
Scottish Sailing Institute and Cumbrae Team head to Abu Dhabi
The ISAF World Cup Finals took place in Abu Dhabi backed by some of the best mark layers in Scotland. The Scottish Sailing Institute’s David Kent and Stuart White were invited along with SportsScotland’s David Frame and Tom Thurlow and RYA Scotland’s Matt Toynbee to the prestigious event held in the United Arab Emirates. Joining John Horwell, Andy Millington and Martin Stevens from the UK, they were invited along after their successful work with ISAF during the Weymouth Stage of the World Cup Series.
The team flew out to organise the mark laying setup and to ensure the smooth running of all the courses at the event. “It’s a reflection of how good the UK System is for mark laying and organised race management” said the SSI’s Stuart White.
The wind suffered from the heat of the day, shutting off about lunch time so it was early starts all round with the team on the water from 8am and going on until sunset.
Racing took place in several different classes including: 470’s, 49er, Laser, Finn, RS:X Windsurfer and the newly introduced Kite Surfing Class. The four day event saw some of the best sailors from around the world compete with some local talent taking part. Lorenzo Chiavarini from Tartbert competed in the Laser Standard, just missing out in 12th place overall and Rory and Neil Hunter from Arran competing in the 49er Class doing well in 6th Place. Bryony Shaw took 1st place in the women’s RS:X class and Hannah Mills and Saskia Clark took the podium position in the women’s 470 class.
Congratulations to the prize winners at the 2015 Scottish Catamaran Championships and Scottish Skiff GP, pictured above. The fleets enjoyed great conditions and close racing accross the weekend.
Full results, some images and video can be seen at the Event Webage on this website
Firth of Clyde Coastal Rowing Club played the welcoming hosts as crews visited from other South West clubs and from further away. The Rowing Club became part of Largs Regatta Week and joined in the fun. The regatta used the Championship slipway at Largs Marina. The finish line was beside the pencil monument for great racing not far from shore.
PEELPORTS Largs Regatta Week Notices of Race and Entry Forms are now available from www.largsregattaweek.co.uk
Alternatively please click on the events page links on the SSI Homepage.
For 66 years the names engraved on the Dragon Edinburgh Cup have had two things in common. They have been the names of some of the finest sailors in the world and they have all been men. Julia Bailey was already recognised as a great sailor, but today she made history by becoming the first woman to claim the Edinburgh Cup. For Julia and her crew of Pedro Andrade, Keith Tippell and Will Heritage aboard GBR720 Aimee the victory must be made even sweeter for knowing that they didn’t just win the regatta, they positively stormed it with a race to spare.
Asked how she felt about her momentous win Julia replied, “Brilliant. It took a little time to sink in. They’re a great team and I love to sail with them. I’ve sailed with Pedro for the last ten years in all sorts of things and he knows my strengths and weaknesses and plays to them. We’re over the moon.” At the prize giving again Julia paid tribute to her crew and to her fellow competitors and also asked fourteen year old Will, who she told the audience she had had to loose ten kilos this year to keep on board, to step forward and help with the thank you speech. Will acquitted himself admirably thanking everyone involved in laying on the regatta and in particular Julia, Pedro and Keith for the incredible opportunity and learning experience.
Whilst Aimee’s overall victory was secured early, the battle for the remaining podium places was only decided in the closing stages of the final race. Ultimately second place was secured by Mike Budd, sailing GBR793 Harry with Mark Greaves and Sam Gardner, who added a first and second to their scorecard to trail Aimee by two points. Third place went down to a tie breaker with Martin Payne, Gillian Hamilton and Donal Small sailing GBR789 Bear, and Tom Vernon, Adam Bowers and Oliver Spensley-Corfield, both finished the regatta on thirteen points with Bear taking third place on count-back.
Mike Budd and the Harry crew also claim the Corinthian Cup for the leading all amateur crew. Second placed Corinthian was GBR764 Naiad sailing by Mike and Monique Hayles and Julian Brooke-Houghton, and GBR515 Basilisk, sailed by Patrick Gifford, Michael Spall and Alan James were third.
The regatta, hosted by the Largs Sailing Club in association with the Scottish Sailing Institute, was agreed by all to have been one of the most demanding Edinburgh Cups in many years. It opened with a near gale, lost a day through lack of wind, had a race abandoned because of the sudden appearance of a nuclear submarine and featured five of the most challenging keelboat races you could hope to experience. For the 20 strong fleet from across the UK and as far afield as Japan it’s been a marathon and every race saw surprises and upsets as the crews took on this stunning venue.
After racing the crews came together for a gala prize giving dinner to honour their winners and celebrate the return of the Dragon Edinburgh Cup to Scotland and the Clyde after an absence of 12 years.
As well as the major trophies a number of special awards were also made including the Jordan Bell for the boat with the highest overall position that does not include a top 6 finish which went to Martin Makey’s GBR704 Ganador, the Classic Boat prize which went to Helen Horsfall’s GBR343 Whizz Too, the First All Girl Crew prize which was won by GBR509 Kismet’s Cathy Sedeworth and crew, and the Puffin Plate for the leading boat over 25 years old which went to Patrick Gifford’s Basilisk. There was also a very special presentation to the best Scottish Country Dancer from Wednesday’s Scottish Night which was won hands down by Donald Milne of GBR790 Flotation!
British Dragon Association Chairman Ron James took the opportunity to thank the event sponsor Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust, the host organisations Largs Sailing Club and the Scottish Sailing Institute, Largs Yacht Haven and the people of Largs for making the Dragon’s return to the Clyde such a memorable one and for their outstanding Scottish hospitality.
Photographs and text courtesy of Fiona Brown
Congratulations to the crew of Aimee pictured above, the winners of the Scottish Mortgage Investment Trust Dragon Scottish Championships.
The Corinthian winners were the crew of Basilisk pictured below. More information can be seen on the event page of this website.
ISAF Sailing World Cup Series 2015 – Weymouth and Portland
The ISAF Sailing World Cup series travels around the world showcasing the best talent in Olympic and Paralympic sailing. The circuit of events has previously visited Melbourne Australia, Miami USA and Heyres in France, with the UK stopover in Weymouth, home of the 2012 Olympic sailing regatta. The World Cup Series follows a new format that features reduced entries and a qualification process for sailors, the entrants in each class are the best of the best from around the world. Hosting 10 Olympic classes, three Paralympic Classes the series also invited Kiteboard racing to Weymouth.
Experience in Weymouth is something the staff at sportscotland’s National Centre Cumbrae, The Scottish Sailing Institute (SSI) and Largs Sailing Club’s volunteers are not short of. Cumbrae’s Chief Instructor, David Frame appointed as the World Cup Event Safety Officer travelled to Weymouth earlier than most to deliver the RYA 2 day National Mark Laying Seminar ahead of the main event. Attending the National seminar were Cumbrae’s Tom Thurlow, the SSI’s Stuart White and Largs Sailing Club’s Andrew Corlett amongst others. Up skilling prior to an event of this level always useful and all of the seminar candidates stayed on to work at the World Cup.
When the regatta began in earnest a large contingent of Scottish expertise in sailing race management and safety was in place to help make the event run smoothly – the full team can be seen in the attached photograph.
From National Centre Cumbrae, Andy Gibb picked up his previous Olympic roving role as Deputy Safety Officer, RYA Scotland’s Matt Toynbee moved up to Senior Mark layer on the Finn and Nacra course and promoted to the same senior role on the Paralympic course was Largs Sailing Club’s Alastair Leicester.
With just over 500 sailors and 160 race management officials on the water at peak times it was always going to be busy keeping the event running smoothly. But the South coast weather played its part, co-operating for the first few days and providing some excellent racing in both breeze and sunshine out on the race areas.
The 2012 Olympic Race Officers, now mentoring the next generation of Race Officers, took a back seat to allow new UK talent to be brought forward. In at the deep end, six National Race Officers stepped onto the International stage including the SSI’s David Kent, who was the Course Race Officer for the 470 fleet. David had recruited a large part of his team from the members of Largs Sailing Club and the combined efforts of the team allowed some truly world class racing to take place across the five separate race areas.
The Beach Master is a crucial role at any event, providing the interface between the on-water and off-water teams, controlling the launch procedure and logging competitors on and off the water. Facing the challenge of 500 sailors accessing the waters off Weymouth was SSI/LSC/RYA Scotland’s Ewan Macpherson. Experienced in dealing with big fleets at Largs, Ewan definitely experienced a different level of event coordinating 500 sailors over 11 different classes, all launching from three separate slips, not to mention controlling the vast expanse of the dinghy park in Weymouth.
As the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing (WPNSA) celebrated its 10th Birthday at the end of the week with a party there were a lot of familiar Scottish faces in to be seen, including Race Officers (David Kent), Assistant Race Officers (Kate Bird, Iain Airlie), Safety Boat Drivers (Joe Gibson) and Crew, Senior Mark Layers (Alastair Leicester, Matt Toynbee) and Mark Layers (Stuart White, Tom Thurlow, Andy Corlett) , Committee Boat team members (Chris Nichol, Dawn Macrae) , Bridge Radio Operators (George McCree) and Event Safety/Medical personnel (Andy Gibb) - all pictured above.
It is very positive and encouraging that Scotland has the ability to offer this amount of expertise and make a significant contribution to a global sailing event of the highest standard. At a more personal level many individuals created opportunities to stretch themselves and broaden their experiences which hopefully they will bring back home and apply in Scotland which can only be to the benefit of Scottish sailing as a whole.
After Weymouth the event moves in September to Quingdao, the 2008 Olympic waters in China before the November final in Abu Dhabi, UAE. All these venues combine to ensure this World Cup Series is a truly global regatta.
Congratulations to Isaac Lines who is the 2015 Scottish Windsurfing Champion, full results can be seen on the events pages of this website.
Photograph Courtesy of Marc Turner visit his website for more images: www.pfmpictures.co.uk
The RYA will be running a National Mark Layer Seminar at Weymouth prioir to the ISAF World Cup Regatta on the 7 - 8 June 2015. The course will be delivered by staff from SSI partner sportscotland Cumbrae.
If you would like to know more or to download the application form please CLICK HERE to goto the RYA website.
Fairlie Yacht Club and Clyde Marina kick started the Clyde racing calendar with the Icebreaker Regatta. Run as a short course, sprint format the Icebreaker is Scotland's only keelboat training regatta and supported by RYA Scotland with the Scottish Sailing Institute championship mark laying team and on water coaching from international coach Barry Dunning and sailmakers from the North and Saturn lofts.
Held in crisp, clear sunshine the open waters off Ardrossan with Arrans mountains as a backdrop give a stunning racetrack. With wind speeds rising from 4 – 12kts the Icebreaker fleet completed 8 races, including 2 slightly over enthusiastic starts and general recalls for Class 1.
Saturday's easterlies of 6–9kts perfectly demonstrated the lifts and pressure gradient of a convergent shore and the left hand side paid steady dividends for the observant. At the end of day 1 Rod Stuart's Aurora showed consistent pace and the boat handling skills of his Commodores Cup campaign were still in place, smoothly negotiating the corners of the short courses and closing the day with a 2, 1, 4, 1 score line to head Class 1. But eyes were often on Andrew McVey's beautiful quarter tonner Phoenix, regularly nosing out of the front of the starts and in the lighter airs showing her modern and larger cousins that the old IOR boats can still show a shapely set of legs around a race course. In Class 2 Garth Wilson's Zebedee laid his mark down counting 2,1,1,1 for the first day.
Sunday dawned with a forecast of 9 to 12 kts ENE, but this took its time to settle. Race officer Pete Wright and the marks team rapidly swung the course for the second race of the day as the forecast delivered and races 2, 3 &4 ran in steadily building breeze finishing with 12 to 14kts. Saturdays leaders maintained their grip with Aurora and Zebedee finishing as class winners and Aurora taking the overall trophy.
The post-race video de briefings from Barry Dunning left little room to hide any indiscretions and closed out another successful Icebreaker to start the Clyde's racing season. A great event to get up to pace quickly at the start of the season, hone your starts and boat handling with the fleet heading home hungry for the season's racing ahead.
We want to thank everyone who came to visit us on Stand E22 at the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show 2015 at London's Alexandra Palace. Over 9500 visitors came to see the very best in the Dinghy World. The Main Stage hosted some great speakers and guests while exhibitors showed what they could offer. The SSI Joined forces once again with Sportscotland Cumbrae where a prize draw was held for a free weekend course with them.
The RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show is the world’s only exhibition dedicated exclusively to dinghy sailing and showcases the very best in boats, cutting edge developments, kit, sailing brands, clubs and class associations and more. From racers to cruisers, families and youngsters, the show offered something for everyone.
Congratulations to all the candidates that took part in the RYA Regional Race Seminar at Helenburgh Sailing Club at the weekend. All the candidates passed with flying colours so now Scotland has 11 new race officers to be proud of......Well done!
Dragons return to Scotland
The Dragon is now a major international class with about 1,500 boats sailed by members of the class associations worldwide and possibly as many again still being used for pleasure though not racing competitively. In the past it was one of the Olympic classes from 1948 to 1972. It now attracts many top flight sailors, often with Olympic or World Championship medals for its combination of a really attractive, interesting boat, its competitive quality and its internationalism. There is a class circuit which extends from New Zealand to Japan, Russia and the US while being at its strongest in the traditional centre of the class in northern Europe.
The class has progressively evolved over the years. The photo of Argee, a boat built by Robertsons at Sandbank in 1937, gives a clear picture of the then state of the art. The photo of Rumours taken in 2014 shows the present stage of evolution. The hull shape and weight has remained the same as has the mainsail. However, a genoa has replaced the jib, a spinnaker has been added (subsequently increased in size), the spars are now aluminium and the accommodation has been eliminated. It is, however, still possible within class rules to build a carvel planked Dragon, and several remain very competitive, but the vast majority of new boats, of which there are about 45 each year worldwide, are GRP.
The Dragon’s origins were in 1929 as a result of a competition held by the Royal Gothenburg Yacht Club (GKSS) to find a cheap one design racing yacht which could be sailed from one regatta to the next in the Baltic. It quickly caught on and attracted the attention of Clyde based yachtsmen to whom the same design brief appealed. Anita (later K18), built by Anker and Jensen, the designer’s yard, was the first Dragon to come to Britain. She arrived on the Clyde in 1935 from Norway in the ownership of James Howden Hume and G.F.Paisley. Enthusiasm was immediate and in 1936 the McGruer yard on the Clyde built 10 Dragons, the first to be built in Britain. At the same time the Clyde Yacht Clubs Association took the very farsighted and generous step of presenting a small gold cup for international competition. This became known as the Dragon Gold Cup and remains one of the class’s premier trophies and is still administered by the CYCA in collaboration with the International Dragon Association.
The class thrived in Scotland. In 1958 there were 140 Dragons in the British fleet of which 23 were on the Clyde and 10 by then on the Forth. These fleets were based largely at Rhu on the Clyde and at Granton on the Forth. Racing naturally took place locally but the class also participated in West Highland Week, sailing to get there, and several Scottish sailors participated in both national and international events. Scotland, and particularly the Clyde, was an important centre for these early events. The British championship, known as the Edinburgh Cup because it was presented by the Duke of Edinburgh, now Prince Philip, has been held six times since 1951 on the Clyde and five times on the Forth. Rather surprisingly, none of these eleven renewals was won by a Scottish sailor, possibly because they often formed the preceding event to the Dragon Gold Cup and therefore attracted the top international sailors. Indeed only five of the eleven were won by British sailors. The other winners were widely drawn with only Denmark winning more than once.
At national level, away from home, Scottish sailors did much better, winning the Edinburgh Cup seven times. Among the winners were Sir Gordon Smith, originally from Aberdeenshire but based in London, Kenneth Gumley, a leading light of Royal Forth Yacht Club, and Gilmour Manuel, still much involved in yacht racing though not currently in the Dragon class.
The Dragon Gold Cup has been sailed for ten times in Scotland, eight times on the Clyde and twice on the Forth. On two of these occasions there was a Scottish victory, in 1961 for Sir Gordon Smith and in 1973 for David Young. Otherwise the event has had winners in Scotland from six different countries and has always been very well supported and been one of the highlights of the Scottish scene each year it has been held there.
Sadly the recent history of the Dragon class in Scotland has failed to sustain the earlier enthusiasm so that by 2000 there were only twelve Scottish Dragons in the British Dragon Association and currently, only a handful are left racing on the Forth. The class is holding the Scottish Championship and the Edinburgh Cup in Largs in June-July 2015 in order to re-launch the Dragon in Scotland and fire up renewed interest in the class. The sailing water between Largs, Rothesay and Wemyss Bay is ideal, and Largs itself provides every necessary facility so that there is everything required for a successful high profile regatta. The class hopes that the regatta will act both as a showcase and as a magnet for Scottish sailors keen to test their skills against both the best English and Irish sailors and even some from further afield. May be the pioneers from Royal Northern Yacht Club, McGruers and Robertsons will be vindicated and the Dragon will re-emerge, like a phoenix, in its original British home.
John Reekie reports on the Scottish Musto Skiff Training that took place in Largs 18-19th October 2014 for Yachts and Yachting.
The sailors arrived early for what was going to be an intense session. With wind forecast in the 20-30+ mph range all weekend. We had 6 Mustos plus the demo boat and a lone RS600 joining the party.
With a course set off the marina to reduce the wave height as much as possible the sailors went out to battle the elements. Jonno Shelley was taking ownership of his new Musto Skiff so elected to take the demo boat out for the beginners so that they could have a shot in challenging conditions for the sailors and help me in the RIB in the morning with Andrew Hooton assisting in the afternoon albeit due to his own poor boat maintenance schedule.
From my perspective in the RIB it was certainly easier to watch people sailing the boat rather than actually sailing the boat and it highlighted a few differences in approach. At the productive end we had Ian Renilson demonstrating technique to result in the highest possible chance of remaining upright.
Check out the Video on facebook here www.facebook.com
Ellen MacArthur was at Largs on the 2nd of October to formally open the Ellen MacArthur Cancer Trust's new office and Scottish hub based in Largs Yacht Haven.
To find out more about what this brilliant organisation does to help young people please visit their website: www.ellenmacarthurcancertrust.org
The SSI would like to wish the trust every success with their new venture.
Photograph courtesy of Marc Turner (www.pfmpictures.co.uk)
Racing in the RYA Scotland Youth and Junior Championships got underway in perfect conditions at Largs Sailing Club with winds gusting 14kts.
The 77 competitors hit the waters for the two day event held just off the sunny shores of the Largs Channel.
Steady winds greeted all of the sailors with racing across 3 race areas getting away on time.
Congratulations to all the winners and those who competed in the event.
To view the results please see our page here
Congratulations to the 69 swimmers who completed the course at the Gillian's Saltire Appeal swim on Saturday 13th September, the SSI was proud to help at the event.
If you would like to make a donation visit the Gillian's Saltire Appeal website.
Congratulations to Farr E Nuff which won the Yacht of the week Trophy for the best overall performance by a yacht during the 25th anniversary PEELPORTS Largs Regatta Week, in what was one of the most closely contested Regatta Weeks for many years.
Congratulations are also due to David and Ian Kent who won the Dinghy of the Week Trophy, counting scores of seven first places and three second places accross the week.
Largs Regatta Week is sponsored by PEELPORTS whose support helped to make the 25th Anniversary Regatta one to remember.
Full results can be seen at the Largs Regatta Week Mini Website.
This year the boat of the weekend award goes to John Reekie in his Musto Skiff which, in the opinion of the PEELPORTS Largs Regatta Week Committee, produced the best overall performance of the weekend counting all first places in a very competitive fleet of seventeen boats. Congratulations John.
Also the COASTWORKS 25th anniversary award for the best performance of a boat older than 25 years was awarded to Farr E Nuff, skippered by John Kent.
The Scottish Sailing Institute was proud to help out at last weekend's record flotilla event that saw 250 boats head into Glasgow. The boats set sail to Pacific Quay at the heart of the city where they berthed, close to the Science Museum and IMAX cinema. The event was estimated to viewed by 10,000 people on the day.
James Stuart, Chief Executive of RYA Scotland, said: "The Commonwealth Flotilla will be the largest assembly of boats that the Clyde has ever seen, and we want to make sure that as many sailors, non-sailors and spectators have the opportunity to make history by being part of this once-in-a-lifetime event.
Only one race completed today at the FD Worlds, congratulations to Szabolcs Majthenyi and Andras Domokos the Flying Dutchman 2014 World Champions, who led the regatta from the first day.
Full Results can be seen at the event page on this website:
Day 4 of the Flying Dutchman Worlds has been cancelled because of high winds with regular gusts of 35knots or more.
The schedule for tomorrow has been amended to allow an earlier start (10:00hrs) and an extra race. The amendment to the SIs can be seen on the Event Page of this website
Day three of the FD worlds offered a wet and windy (23knots) first race which moderated to a sunny 15knots for the second race. Full results can be seen here at the FD Worlds Event Page on this website
Better conditions today - for the lightweights at least!
Lighter breezes allowed some of the smaller crews to move up to the front of the fleet although the Hungarian duo of Szabolcs Majthenyi and Andras Domokos - pictured above - managed to hold on to their lead. Full report and results can be seen at the events page of this website HERE
The 2014 Flying Dutchman World Championships at Largs, Scotland are ready to launch.
Saturday and Sunday are boat measurement days, and the sailors are also venturing out to test the waters after their measurements have been completed.
Racing will start on Monday 14th July, and will be completed on Saturday 19th, after a maximum of nine races over the week. Racing will take place in the Firth of Clyde, North of Cumbrae, in waters between the Isle of Bute and the mainland.
Competitors have come from eleven countries on three continents, with particularly strong contingents from Germany, the Netherlands and Great Britain. A number of past champions are among the 43 competing boats, so competition will be fierce.
Racing starts on Monday at 11am.
J.P. Morgan Asset Management ROUND THE ISLAND RACE 2014
The annual J.P. Morgan Asset Management Round the Island Race, organised by the Island Sailing Club, is a one-day yacht race around the Isle of Wight, an island situated off the south coast of England. The race regularly attracts over 1,600 boats and around 15,000 sailors, making it one of the largest yacht races in the world and the fourth largest participation sporting event in the UK after the London Marathon and the Great North and South Runs.
The round the island race took place at the weekend with some of the local boats doing very well with top three finishes in their IRC groups.
In IRC Group 0 Eala of Rhu had a fantastic race coming in 2nd overall and the first GBR boat. They were pipped by localletterbox zero from Ireland which took overall first place in the Class.
In division 1A Zepher came in 3rd overall with a corrected time of 11:16:34 after VIXTER and LA REPONSE which fought hard to gain their places in 2nd and 1st.
The SSI was proud to support this years Scottish Series. The annual event, now in its 40th year saw many competitors take part in the racing. Most competitors started from Gourock on Friday for a passage race whilst racing at Tarbert went underway. Over the 4 days the wind was interesting at time but overall everyone got some good racing in.
The SSI last week helped out at the RYA Youth Championships held at Weymouth this year. The weather was sunny with good winds forecast and the 390 plus competitors raced across 6 different boat fleets. The event was a huge success, Princess Anne was in attendance on the Thursday to give the competitors a boost and with Weymouth hosting the event again in 2015 the annual youth regatta is going from strength to strength.
Scotland’s own Jamie Calder took first place in the Laser Radial Gold fleet. The prize wasn’t just for the title however by winning the event Jamie (sailing in the Laser Radial class) now becomes the ISAF representative for team GB at the ISAF youth worlds which takes places in Tavira, Portugal from the 12-19 July 2014.
One of the first complete Scottish teams has emerged as the first GBR entry for the 2014 Brewin Dolphin Commodores Cup hosted by The Royal Ocean Racing Club (RORC) at Cowes this July.
The Clyde based team consists of a group of committed owners who have been working throughout the winter in creating a team with a broad experience, that includes some of the leading professionals in recent event history.
Eala of Rhu, owned by Jamie McGarry and Colin Moore of the Royal Northern & Clyde have recruited Kevin Sproul, who sailed Keronimo to victory for GBR Red in the 2012 event. He joins Jon Fitzgerald in running the Swan 45 in the international IRC Regatta.
“It’s fantastic to be involved with a prepared and organised Clyde based team this early in the year. It bodes well for a successful campaign." comments Kevin Sproul.
The First 40, Zephyr from Royal Gourock YC has competed successfully over the past couple of seasons with owner Steve Cowie, both in Ireland in 2013 and winning their Class at Cowes in 2012. The choice of pro is natural one as Ian Budgen started sailing at RGYC in Pipers before building a strong reputation in the sailing world from the TP52 circuit, the Volvo Ocean Race and the Americas Cup.
Completing the three-boat team is the Corby 37, fomerly Impetuous, a competitive IRC boat which is new to the Clyde Cruising Club owners Rod Stuart, Bill Ram and Donald MacKenzie. Rod Stuart who competed with EOS, an Elan 410, has enjoyed some good offshore results including 2nd in class in the 2013 Middle Sea Race. Sailmaker and experienced IRC campaigner John Highcock takes on the professional role onboard.
RYAS Chief Operating Officer James Stuart comments, “We are delighted to be in a position to support an entry from Scotland for this pinnacle IRC racing event. Events of this nature offer a great opportunity to see some of Scotland's best sailors competing on an international stage.”
Team Scotland’s campaign will start their training on the Clyde, including the 40th anniversary of the Scottish Series. The boats then head to the Solent to train and compete in the RORC Offshore races, the IRC National Championships and ultimately the Brewin Dolphin Commodores Cup from the 19th to the 26th of July.
Selectors have reminded teams that the deadline of the entry to the rest of the GBR selections closes on March 28th.
Chris Mason of the Selection group added, “We are delighted to have an early commitment from a Scottish team and it shows a real passion for the event that owners and crews are working together at this early stage. The RYA are just about to enter the final week looking for entries to the selection trials and we hope to find the same enthusiasm coming forward from the rest of the country.”
Latest news on the Brewin Dolphin Commodores' Cup can be found at commodorescup.rorc.org
The Notice of Race can be viewed and downloaded from the website or contact the RORC Race Office, email@example.com
Only 5 Short days left to sign up for the RYA Scotland Spring Championships taking part 29-30 March. The championship, which is open to Optimist, Topper, BicTechno, Laser Standard, laser Radial, Solo, 29er and 420 classes see some of the best from around the country taking part.
If you want to sign up then click here
Once again the Institute travelled to the Temple of the Dinghy Sailor, The RYA Dinghy Show at the Alexandra Palace in London. The event, held every year, has exhibitors from all around the industry putting their best foot forward and showing off their wares. The show, which attracted over 10,000 visitors this year was hailed a huge success. It is completely dedicated to all things Dinghy with boats, new and old on display. Also on display was a host of new gear, kit and books for all the enthuiasts. The Ally Pally brought an air of fun for all the family with the RS Sailing simulator being tested out by the young sailors of the future as well as a trapezing rig allowing the public to have a go using the latest techniques for getting out on the wire. From single handers to crewed boats, catamarans to the sailability boats the show gave you it all. The sailing clubs and associations were well represented with everyone from Rutland Water, SportScotland Cumbrae and of course the Scottish Sailing Institute giving people a chance to get on the water. The RYA Dinghy Show showed off the best new dinghies on the market today.
David Kent, Sailing Development Manager for the Scottish Sailing Institute (SSI) commented; “SSI have been coming to the show for over 10 years now. It’s a great place for us to network with the classes and attract events north of the border.
“The atmosphere is really friendly and we’ve had a lot of people coming to talk with us; it’s great having all the main players all in one place. Saturday was really busy, busier than last year and we’re hoping for a busy Sunday as well.”
We can't wait until next year to do it all over again!
The Scottish Sailing Institute will be taking part in the RYA Dinghy Show 2014.
Taking place at the magnificent Alexandra Palace in London over the weekend of 1-2 March 2014 the RYA Suzuki Dinghy Show, in association with Yachts and Yachting, is at the heart of British dinghy sailing with something for everyone; young or old, novice or pro, cruiser or racer.
Please come along and visit us at Stand F4.
Follow us on facebook: www.facebook.com/scottishsailinginstitute
For more info on the Dinghy Show visit: : www.rya.org.uk/programmes/dinghyshow/Pages/RYADinghyShow.aspx
Congratulations to Largs Sailing Club for winning the Yachts and Yachting Event of the Year 2014 as voted for by readers. The event held at Largs in April 2013 has won the award for its outstanding service, facilities and staffing.
RYA would like to pass on their thanks and congratulations everyone at Largs who helped with the event.
For more information please see
A strong Scottish Team of ten sailors will be heading across the Irish Sea to compete against Northern Ireland, England and Wales at Stangford Laugh in Northern Ireland in the Home Nations Championships on 1-2 February. For more information click here
Regrettably this event has been cancelled due to the extreme weather that is forecast along with numerous high wind warnings issued for the west coast of Scotland. Winds over the weekend are expected to reach in excess of 50knots.
We apologise for any inconvenience caused and will look into the possibility of rescheduling early in 2014.
A great new website for Largs and the surrounding area. Explorelargs.com gives all the information you need for your stay in and around Largs.
For more information check out their site here
Nature has shown its wrath once again and unfortunately some of the dinghies at Largs Sailing Club have been damaged. We have posted on FaceBook as well as Twitter about this. The voilent storm, registering at 63kts on the SSI weather station, came in through the morning. While the worst of the storm seems to have passed the wind is still around 25 knts at present. Please check out our Gallery page to see the boats and the damage that has been done.
The photographys don't show all the damage so please check your boat as soon as you can.
We recently finished our Movember campaign to help raise vital funds and awareness for prostate and testicular cancer and mental health. The charity event that takes place every year and has raised £276 million since its started in 2003. The fundraising event helps fund 577 projects around the world. We want to thank everyone who donated and their families for letting them grow their Mo's! The SSI as a team raised over £150 for the event. THANKS!!!!
The Notice of Race for the RYA Scotland Winter Championships has been published, it can be downloaded from the event page on this website.
The Scottish Sailing Institute was pleased to help out with race management for the RYA Scotland Youth and Junior Championships 2013. The SSI provided marks and race managment aid for the event, which saw seven different classes competing.
The championships, held at East Lothian Yacht Club, saw over 115 young sailors from around the country come together to battle it out for honours at Scotland's premier Youth sailing regatta.
The event catered for all levels of sailors, from those in GBR squads down to the coached regatta fleet which saw entry level sailors enjoy fun racing in a safe, friendly environment.
The racing was very close throughout the weekend and a number of very happy sailors took home prizes on the final day.
For all the Results click Here
Super Saturday Swim Seventy Five swimmers swam the channel today and flew the flag for the Gillian Saltire Appeal. The Largs Channel may not match the distance of the English channel but for many it is a huge challenge requireing physical fitness, overcoming an unfamiliar environment and braveness. This is the largest number of entrants in the 8 year history of this event and with dark salty waters reaching 40metres deep, Lion Mane jelly fish and other sea creatures lurking it is along way from the participants comfort zone. Raising money to support the seafront apartment in Largs which provides respite for families supporting relatives with cancer is a worthy reason to take the plunge and swim the one and a half miles across from the island back to the safety of the mainland. The first person to complete this was Mark Deans, in just 30.08 minutes. This was just 2 minutes ahead of his brother Scott, second place swimmer in 32.05 minutes. Both times were Personal bests and the fastest yet recorded for this event. The first female was Eilidh Love, aged 14 in just 36.18 minutes and first junior was Michael Alcorn. 14 years in 36.09 minutes. The weather, as ever, influences our outdoor activities and today it was on our side. With sunny skies and gentle winds the sea state was perfect and helped the hardy challengers succeed in their goal. The Gillian Saltire Swim organisers were delighted by the number of participants, supporters and local organisations. Largs Sailing club played host to the event along with sportscotland National Centre Cumbrae who provided the perfect starting point, safety and organisational support. Running into the waters from the watersport centre gives a sheltered starting point as the swimmers embark on their journey. Largs Sailing Club welcomed the event with support ashore and afloat with provision of expertise and resources. It is a wonderful gathering of people where their sheer delight in achieving their conquest is so evident and gladly shared as they reach the shore. Celebrating together everyone gathered in the clubhouse for the medal celebration and enthusiastic exchanges of their experience. For many a 10K run may be a challenge but for a moment think about the alien environment the ocean is for many of us. Wearing wetsuits, neoprene socks, vaseline, goggles and caps is unusual enough before the intrepid deep, salty, weedy and wavy sea. Take account of the temperature and the distance from shore and where you might rest should you need. Combined this is not the average Saturday afternoon activity and Les Ward, from the Gillian Saltire Appeal expressed his gratitude and gave recognition to the efforts of all involved and their commitment in fulfilling the vision of supporting those with cancer. If you are interested in trying this event visit the website and watch out for the 2014 date. www.gillianssaltireappeal.org.uk
The SSI is delighted to be able to help the Scottish Windfest by lending some race marks to the event. Pop along to Barrassie Beach to check the event out, more info can be found at the Scottish Windfest Website
Congratulations to EXCALIBUR winner of the Peelports CLYDEPORT Largs Regatta Week YACHT OF THE WEEK, a well deserved result as they were nexer placed worse than third throughout the entire regatta.
RS 200 No 1254 took the DINGHY OF THE WEEK TROPHY.
Other prize winners at the SCOTTISH TWO HANDED RACE included:
Fastest Passage Round Arran was awarded to Maximoose II which completed the passage in 9hrs 15minutes and 58 seconds.
Most Venerable Crew in the 2 Handed Race was awarded to Mallie
The Family prize went to Caol Ila crewed by Gordon & Shiela Stewart
Class winners and full results for the Scottish Two Handed Race can be seen HERE
The SSI helped out at both East Coast Sailing Week (30 AUG - 02 SEP 2013) help at Port Edgar YC and the Scottish One Design Series held at Loch Lomond Sailing Club (31 AUG - 01 SEP 2013) by lending race marks, ground tackle and other race management equipment.
More information on ECSW can be seen HERE
More information on the Scottish One Design Series can be seen HERE
The Class Splits ahve been posted for the Peelports CLYDEPORT Scottish Two Handed Race.
Click HERE to view them.
Many congratulations to Mercenary who win the Peelports Clydeport 100 Guineas Series by the narrowest of margins to add to the Yacht of the Weekend victory at the Cumbraes Weekend regatta. Mercenary must be a very hot tip for the overall Largs Regatta Week trophy but it all depends on their result inthe Scottish Two Handed Race which starts on Saturday.
Congratulations to Mersonary who won the Peelports CLYDEPORT Yacht of the Weekend at the Largs Regatta Week Cumbraes Regatta.
The Keelboat Class splits for Cumbraes Weekend are now published on the event page of this website.
Many congratulations to Ian Dobson and Andy Tunnicliffe who won the 2013 GP14 National Championships. Second Place went to Tom Gillard and Tim Hartley and third were Mike and Liz Senior.
Full results and more information can be seen on the GP14 Event Page of this website.
The crew's race took place today as it is a lay day for the main fleet. The Largs channel provided a 10knot Southerly breeze, and grey skies and drizzle.
The race allowed crews to pick their own course and they gained points for each mark that they rounded within the time limit.
The winner was Justin Smith (13838) with 200 points, in second place was Phil Hodgkins (14034) with 165 points, and in third was Nick Brandon (13705) with 140 points.
A great news article appeared on BBC Reporting Scotland about the Optimist British National and Open Championships 2013. The article only has 10 hours left on Iplayer, so check it out while you can .Click here to view
Shirley Robertson, double Olympic Gold medal winner, inspires the young optimist sailors after a great first day of racing at the British National and Open Championships 2013. The senior and junior sailors managed three races to get the championship off to a great start.
The Inverkip power station was finally toppled last night. Scotland's highest free standing structure came down at 22:00 hrs on Sunday 28th July. The chimney, a great navigation aid on the clyde was 236m tall.
John Kent, chairman of the SSI and Simon Rodgers, Chairman of IOCA(UK) officially open the Volvo Gill British National and Open Championships 2013
The SSI's David Kent gave the the event safety briefing for the Volvo Gill British National and Open Championships 2013. The event has over 300 competitors from not only the UK but from around the world.
The marquee is going up for the optimist nationals. This is where competitors and volunteers will have meetings and safety briefings for the event. Measurement for the event will also take place in the marquee on the 27th July.
For more information contact: http://www.kbsuk.com/optimist/iocaevents/index.asp?EventID=45
The 2013 Sail for Gold event, held every year at Weymouth since it's inauguration in 2006 took place this year from 8th to 14th June. The SSI helped with race management, media and mark laying duties for the five days of racing.
For all the event results and pics check out our gallery and the website below.
Congratulations to Dean Hargreaves becoming Scottish Open Windsurfing champion for 2013. Dean confirmed his win in the Techno class on the second day of Open Championship at Largs Sailing Club with a finish in the top three of the event. The annual event saw competitors from all over the UK compete in three classes, Open, Techno and Raceboard.
Full results and other images can be seen at the Scottish Windsurfing Championships Webpage.
Photograph courtesy of Marc Turner of pfm pictures.
The SSI and its partner organisation sportscotland Cumbrae were pleased to support the Clyde Cruising Club during the recent Scottish Series which took place in Loch Fyne over the long weekend of 24th to 27th of May 2013. SSI and Cumbrae provided RIBs and Race Management support including personnel and hardware at the successful event. A full programme of races were delivered in variable conditions which tested both the race mangement teams and competitors alike, resulting in some of the closest racing the Scottish Series has seen in a while. More information about the regatta, including the full results can be seen at the Scottish Series Website.
Additional photographs can be seen on the Scottish Series Gallery Page of this website.
Kentra one of the Fife Regatta competitors was launched in time for the Fife Regatta which begins in Largs on 29th of June. She is currently berthed at Largs Yacht Haven and will no doubt be undertaking some trails to work up for the Regatta. Photograph courtesy of Marc Turner of pfmpictures
The SSI and Largs Sailing Club supported Fairlie Yacht Club at the Icebreaker Regatta sailed out of Clyde Marina, Ardrossan over the weekend of the 13-14 April. The SSI provided mark laying and race management services along with much of the hardware required to run the event, including marks and RIBs.
The Regatta serves as a warm-up event for the Clyde's yacht fleet and is also used thttp://youtu.be/F7gCmFWL-uYo provide some coaching which the full-on short,sharp racing format compliments perfectly. Eleven yachts made it to the start line on Saturday, with many calling off because of the unfavourable forecast which predicted gales for Staurday evening. The weather held off long enough for five races to take place in a building South Easterly breeze which starterd at five knots and increased throughout the day to around 15 knots. The competitors worked hard on Saturday which certainly blew the cobwebs away and tested the post-winter set up on the boats.
Results and more information is available from the Fairlie Yacht Club Website
You can go direct to the results at: http://www.fairlieyachtclub.org.uk/racing/results.html
See the racing here
RYA Volvo Team GBR confirmed for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships 2013
After five days of racing at the 2013 RYA Youth National Championships, selectors for RYA Volvo Team GBR, led by Double Olympic gold medallist Sarah Ayton OBE, who won silver for Great Britain at the 1998 ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships in the Laser Radial, have announced the 12 sailors who will represent Great Britain at the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships 2013.
The names of the sailors who will travel to Limassol, Cyprus from the 11-20 July 2013 to defend the ISAF Youth Worlds Nations Trophy which RYA Volvo Team GBR won last year in Dublin Bay were revealed at the prize-giving of the RYA Youth National Championships earlier today.
Leading the charge for the British Team will be the 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist Saskia Sills. The 16-year-old Cornish windsurfer, who won the event on her debut in Dublin in 2012 as well the U17 European title and silver at her class World Championships in Penghu, Chinese Taipei, last summer, dominated the female windsurfing fleet in Scotland to gain selection for a second consecutive year.
“It’s brilliant to be selected for a second consecutive year, obviously the ISAF Youth Worlds last year was a really big learning curve for me and was a really good experience so I really wanted to be selected again.”
“At the start of the week the competition was tough for selections but once I got a bit of a lead I started to relax and really enjoyed the racing.”
With Sills determined to defend her ISAF Youth Worlds crown, the windsurfer realises that there is some work to be done between now and the event in Cyprus.
“My speed in 11-12 knots isn’t as quick as what I want it to be so I want to improve on that. I have heard rumours that Cyprus will be quite a light wind venue so I’ll be looking at my light wind pumping and aiming to improve that.”
“I think the door is wide open this year because last year the girl that had won the previous year finished third so it obviously shows that anything can happen. I’m just going to go into the event and concentrate on my process goals and hopefully the outcome will be the one I want. It’s still very scary but I’m really looking forward to racing against the best people in the world.”
Adding to the calibre of RYA Volvo Team GBR is Kieran Martin who was one of the first to cement his position in this year’s team as the 18-year-old recorded an impressive 11 race wins at the RYA Youth National Championships.
“It feels really great, I came here with the only intention to get selected for the ISAF Youth Worlds team. I have had a really great week here at Largs Sailing Club and it feels great to be back apart of RYA Volvo Team GBR and amongst the countries best sailors,” said Martin.
Winning silver medals at the 2012 RS:X Youth Worlds Championships and 2012 RS:X European Championships in 2012, the Carsington Water Sailing Club teenager has his sights set on bettering his result at the 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds in Dublin.
“Last year I made a few silly mistakes and paid the price. I feel as though I have now learnt from those mistakes, matured as a competitor and am now ready to go back to the Youth Worlds and make amends for my result in 2012.”
Ellie Meopham joins Sills and Martin as one of four sailors from RYA Volvo Team GBR who have competed at the prestigious event in 2012. Meopham made it easy for selectors as she stole the show in Laser Radial class by not only finishing top girl but dominating from start to finish and topping the overall leaderboard by a staggering 30 points.
“It’s a relief! It is really nice and I’m really happy but it’s definitely a relief,” expressed Meopham.
“The Youth Worlds is such a prominent event within the world of Sailing with so many great sailors having competed at the event over the years. To even mention the word Olympian in this context and just talking about being associated with them is incredible and such a great feeling!
Meopham finished fourth at the event in Dublin Bay last year and is fully aware of what to expect this time around.
“There are so many things I learnt last year which have definitely improved my sailing over the past 12 months. I went to Dublin expecting nothing and I got an incredible experience so this year I am going to go and know exactly how much I’m going to learn and that is a hell of a lot!
Joining Meopham in the Laser Radial is fellow Welsh sailor Thomas Williams who will be making his event debut at the 2013 event.
In the two person dinghy class for both boys and girls at the event, 420 crews Tim Riley/Luke Burywood and Annabel Cattermole/Bryony-Bennett Lloyd will make up RYA Volvo Team GBR’s contenders. Both crews will be making their event debuts, however both have had a positive run of results in the build-up to the RYA Youth National Championships. With an inspiring performance in Scotland, and with Cattermole/ Bennett Lloyd finishing third, the newcomers will be valued members of RYA Volvo Team GBR.
“It’s a fantastic feeling, we have been working towards it for two and a half years and its finally come round and we are really excited,” said Cattermole.
Bennett Lloyd added: “Watching the 2012 Olympic Games in Weymouth and Portland this year was really inspiring and to think that might be us in several years’ time as we are following in Olympians footsteps is unbelievable.”
“We will be doing lots of fitness over the next few months in the build-up to the event, working on the arms to try and build them up for the pumping in Cyprus and training really hard with start lines especially. That is something we really need to work on as I think as we have been spat out a few times this week,” concluded Bennett Lloyd.
Ben Batten will make up the foursome of returning RYA Volvo Team GBR sailors with the Lymington based sailor going for gold and glory with his new helm Mimi El-Khazindar.
“It feels really good to be selected, said Batten. “It’s been a big goal for us for the last six months. I went to the Youth Worlds last year and didn’t do as well as I wanted so it’s great to get another opportunity to have another go at those goals, it’s great!”
“There are so many famous names on the trophy, lots of famous names of people who have won medals and are still winning medals at Olympic level so just to be on the same track as them is a great feeling.”
Rounding of the line-up for RYA Volvo Team GBR are the Spitfire duo of James Henson/Olivier Greber. The pair have battled with 2012 ISAF Youth worlds gold medallist Tom Britz over the past five days taking it right down to the wire in the final race of the day. With the pair posting five bullets and only missing out on the U21 title point, the duo will be the ones to watch out for in the SL16 class in Cyprus.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “I am delighted to welcome the members of RYA Volvo Team GBR 2013 to an exclusive club, they have a great opportunity to not only to represent GBR at one of the most prestigious sailing events in the world but also to learn a huge amount and have a fantastic experience. We have a great mix of veterans from last year’s events and new debutants who are sailing fast and have every potential of achieving at this year’s event. Once again the team are supported by Volvo Car UK and clothed by Henri Lloyd, I am extremely grateful for their continued support to Youth Sailing in the UK.”
RYA Volvo Team GBR Squad for the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships 2013:
Boys: Tim Riley (Warsah SC)/Luke Burywood (Lymington Town & HISC)
Girls: Annabel Cattermole (Welwyn Garden City SC)/Bryony-Bennett Lloyd (Hickling Broad SC)
Mimi El-Khazindar (Lymington Town SC) and Ben Batten (Lymington Town SC)
Boys: Kieran Martin (Carsington Water SC)
Girls: Saskia Sills (Roadford Lake SC)
Boys: Thomas Williams(Shotwick SC)
Girls: Ellie Meopham (Fishguard Bay SC)
James Henson (Weston SC )/Olivier Greber (Pevensey Bay SC
Triumph for reigning RYA Youth National Champions
It was a day of triumph today (Friday 5 April) for four of last year’s RYA Youth National champions as they all reclaimed their titles on the final day of the RYA Youth National Championships at Largs Sailing Club.
Ellie Meopham in the Laser Radial stole the show as the Welsh sailor not only finished top girl but dominated from start to finish topping the overall leaderboard by a staggering 30 points.
“It feels amazing to be honest! It has always been a personal aim of mine, I don’t want to just beat a couple of people, I want to beat everyone. I know that sounds really harsh but it’s true. It is a feeling of a job well done,” said Meopham.
“I only realised I had won the overall event when the Welsh Squad coach, Stevie, came up and gave me the results. I just wanted to cry! It made me feel really good and it’s so nice just to have a release from the tension from a week-long event. It just builds up and up even if you know it is likely that you will win there is always that thing in the back of your head, what if a black flag, what if I get disqualified, what if? It’s just so nice to have that lifted off my shoulders now and to have finally won!
The Laser Radial boys fleet was a tight affair with Welsh sailor Thomas Williams claiming the event victory on the final day of the regatta, finishing second overall. Williams stole top spot off of Edward Jones who led most of the regatta and managed to clinch the honours with a second and a discard of 31 in the two races completed today.
Williams said: “It’s been a pretty horrible week actually and conditions have been a nightmare but in the end it is all good and I’m very happy. Coming into the last day I tried to stay as calm as I could but obviously there is quite a lot of stress and you put a lot of pressure on yourself. The key to my success this week was keeping on my toes. It is so changeable out there that whoever was most switched on was going to get the shift first and that made the difference.”
Georgina Povall finished second girl while Rheanna Pavey finished third girl in the Laser Radial.
In the larger Laser Standard class, Michael Beckett, last year’s champion in the Laser Radial, continued the Welsh dominance of the Lasers as he sailed to an empathic 10 point victory over Henry Wetherell who finished second and Andrew Green rounding off his regatta in third.
In the RS:X Windsurfing fleet Kieran Martin and Saskia Sills were clinical in claiming consecutive RYA Youth National Championship titles.
“It feels amazing to have won the Youth Nationals’ for a second consecutive year,” expressed Martin.
“I now get the opportunity to go to the ISAF Youth Worlds again which is great! It’s been pretty challenging with the wind this week as it’s been all over the place so it has been tough racing.”
Martin was ruthless across the five days of racing picking up an incredible 11 race wins from the 14 races completed, finishing the regatta with a 19 point lead over second placed Joe Bennett.
“The key to my success has been keeping it simple really. It’s been a really tough week with my hands and feet really feeling the cold but it has all been worth it now as I have come out on top!
ISAF Youth Worlds Gold medallist Saskia Sills finished her regatta 23 points ahead of second placed Noelle Finch while her twin sister Imogen finished the week as third girl overall.
Sills said: “It is really good to win the RYA Youth Nationals again as it gives me a great chance to go back and defend my title at the ISAF Youth Worlds. After Tuesday, it gave me a wake-up call that anything can happen and if you are at the back of the fleet then you can either just sit there and follow everyone else or take the opportunities to bang a corner and get back to the front of the fleet. Tuesday was a massive learning point for me and since then I have just tried to stay consistent and not increase my discards.”
“I have been training since just after the last ISAF Youth Worlds really to make sure I qualify again so I’m really happy and looking forward to heading away to the sun instead of the 10 degrees and freezing weather we have had this week,” said Sills.
The 420 fleet provided the most excitement across the five days of racing with continual movement at the top of leaderboard. Tim Riley and Luke Burywood’s consistent set of scores was enough to give them event victory while Annabel Cattermole and Bryony-Bennet Lloyd finished third overall to take the female title. Scott Wallis and Josh Voller finished their regatta off in second, four points off the event victory.
“It has been incredible. We were having our pictures taken earlier and it just made it feel so real that we have actually achieved it. We have been working so hard for it for so long and now it’s happened,” expressed Cattermole.
Bennet-Lloyd added: “We came in this morning and thought that we could do it and beat the boys but unfortunately we had some tough last races and we didn’t quite perform as we wanted to in that last race so we finished third overall which we are happy with. We have a good points lead over the other girls so we’re really happy.
“It’s been quite a tough week. It is a really nice place to sail and the event has been well organised and I have definitely enjoyed sailing here.”
The 29er class saw a masterpiece in sailing in the shifty conditions from the events international competitors as New Zealand’s Marcus Somerville and Jack Simpson finished with an impressive score line. Mimi El-Khazindar and 2012 RYA Youth National champion Ben Batten finished second overall and top GBR boat ahead of Owen Bowerman and Morgan Peach in third.
“I’m really happy that we came away with a win. We were second coming into today so we have pulled it off so I’m pretty happy,” said New Zealand’s Marcus Somerville.
“The event has been run really well and they have made it feel like a major event which is great at a Youth event. We came away with the win which makes it feel even better. In New Zealand we had two boats trialling for the ISAF Youth Worlds spot last year and we had about 10 this year so there is a lot more competition here especially when there is around 50 boats. The UK competitors are really good and some are the best in the world so it’s good to see how we go against them.”
In the girls 29er fleet, Vikki Payne and Stephanie Orton have made it a hat trick of RYA Youth National titles as the girls from the South Coast finished seventh overall, nine points in front of Charlotte Hooper and Molly Brown in ninth, and second girls.
“Three years in a row, amazing,” enthused Payne. “I can’t even believe it. We jumped into the class and we have just loved every minute of it and to be able to come back saying that we are ladies youth national champions again is just unbelievable, we’re so happy!
“It’s been our aim, after we won it the first year we wanted to come back and do it again and to come back again has just been the icing on top of the cake. It has been pretty challenging and we have had moments where we got a little bit stressed out but luckily today we managed to keep our cool.
With this being the 29er sailors last year of Youth sailing, Orton added: “It is a fantastic way to end our youth sailing career, we are looking forward to the last international competitions and nationals in the 29er and then we will be moving in the Olympic 49er FX classes.”
The Spitfire class has been a continuous battle from start to finish between Tom Britz/Abbie Hewitt and James Henson/Olivier Greber. Trading places thoughout the week, Britz, who won gold at the ISAF Youth Worlds in 2012, and his crew Hewitt kept a cool head going into today’s final races to clinch the under 21 championship title by a single point. Henson and Greber were crowned U19 champions on Thursday.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “Today has concluded a really exciting week of sailing at one of the UK’s great Championship venues, it has been cold, scenic, and challenging and the winners really deserve every praise as they have worked hard and showed a lot of character this week. 2013 was the biggest turn out ever fielded at this event hosted in Scotland, in addition to the numbers the standard continues to rise and the level of preparation, competence and skills of the whole of every fleet is way up on what I saw the last time we were here four years ago.
“I’d like to thank all the team up in Largs, and all the volunteers for delivering a great event in the most challenging of conditions. The sailors have been offered a great platform this week, a springboard to develop their skills and go on to top last year’s medal tally. I am confident that we are going to have another fantastic year and that many of these sailors will be occupying our Olympic Transition and Development programmes in the years to come.”
Henson and Greber crowned U19 Champions with a day to spare
James Henson and Olivier Greber have today (Thursday 4 April) been crowned U19 RYA Youth National Champions in the Spitfire class as the RYA Youth National Squad sailors cruised to an emphatic national title with a day’s racing to spare at Largs Sailing Club.
With tensions running high once again at the top of the six youth fleets as the regatta moved into the business end, a cool head proved the key to success on what turned out to be another great day of racing.
Henson and Greber, both 17, dominated the U19 fleet on the opening day with a resounding three race wins cementing their position at the top of the leaderboard from the word go. The Spitfire duo, who have been sailing together for two years and finished last year’s event in fourth, secured the U19 title on the penultimate day of the Championships today with a further two bullets and a second.
“It feels great to have won the U19 RYA Youth National title,” expressed Henson.
“We have been training really hard over the past year, especially in the build-up to this event with our main aim to win the U19 title and the ISAF Youth Worlds spot. To clinch the title with a day to spare is a great achievement as the Spitfire fleet is very competitive this year with some great sailors.”
The pair now face stiff competition from reigning champion and 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist Tom Britz and his crew Abbie Hewitt for the U21 RYA Youth National title. Britz and Hewitt, who were overnight leaders coming into today’s racing, slipped into second place after two seconds and a fourth.
“Obviously it’s great to have won the U19 title but we came here to beat Tom [Britz] so we have still got a lot of work to do tomorrow. Tom and Abbie are sailing great this week so it’s going to be great fun tomorrow battling it out for the U21 title,” said Greber.
Kieran Martin is proving unstoppable here at the Scottish Sailing Institute as the Carsington Water SC member extended his lead at the top of the RS:X Windsurfing leaderboard with another three bullets. The reigning champion is on fire with this week’s regatta throwing up his ideal sailing conditions.
“This weeks conditions are my preferred sailing conditions for sure! We have had an unstable 5-10 knots most days with some big shifts in wind so it’s been challenging but I’m really enjoying my racing at the moment. I have been really happy with my downwind speed this week and can’t wait to get back out on the water tomorrow.”
Joe Bennett posted two seconds and was very close to posting another, but dropped seven places in the final 20 meters of race two on the last leg with the gusts favouring his competitors. In the female fleet, Saskia Sills demonstrated her ability to deliver under pressure as the reigning champion bettered the results of her closest rival Noelle Finch with 6-6-4 in the gusty and shifty conditions. Finch posted 9-8-5 to put her 13 points behind Sills with only one day to go until the curtains close on the RYA Youth National Championships 2013.
The nerves are starting to appear in the 29er fleet with the overnight leaders from New Zealand slipping back into second, whilst Owen Bowerman and Morgan Peach have dropped from second to third after a number of boats were black flagged in the final race of the day. Mimi El-Khazindar and Ben Batten have leapfrogged from third to first with a 5-4-7 and a final race which they are discarding of a BFD.
“It feels really good to top the leaderboard going into the last day of the regatta tomorrow. There are still two more races with a lot of hard racing to be done but hopefully we can hold our position at the top come the close of play tomorrow. A lot of the top boats got some bad results today which has worked out in our favour,” said Batten.
Mimi El-Khazindar added: “Ben and I have been sailing together for about seven months now and we get on really well as a team so we were sort of expecting to do really well at this event. We are good at keeping a cool head when the pressure is on and making the right decisions throughout the racecourse which we hope will benefit our performance tomorrow.”
Annabel Cattermole and Bryony-Bennett Lloyd continue to dominate the female fleet of the 420 class with an imposing 2-1-7 from their three completed races today seeing them now lying an impressive second overall. Scott Wallis and Josh Voller slip to third from first after a 3-12-5 while Tim Riley and Luke Burywood reclaim top spot on the penultimate day of the regatta. Sarah Alton and Molly Frost are lying in seventh overall, 35 points behind Cattermole and Bennett Lloyd.
There was no movement at the top of the leaderboard for Welsh sailors Ellie Meopham and Michael Beckett as the pair continue to dominate the Laser Radial and Laser Standard classes respectively with both sailors harbouring a healthy lead at the top of their fleets.
With the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championship selectors revealing their team selections tomorrow, Sarah Ayton OBE, chair of this year’s selectors, was impressed with the standard of racing on day four of the Championships.
“I was really impressed with what I saw today, “ said the double Olympic gold medallist Ayton.
“Racing was very tight at the top of most fleets with sailors battling it out in the challenging conditions. This week is all about being able to put a Series together and being consistent across the five days of racing. Sailors who are able to keep their heads under pressure going into the final day tomorrow will come out on top. I’m looking forward to seeing if sailors can deliver when the pressure is really on!”
“On the final day of any regatta it always comes down to doing the things that you know you are good at and falling back on those routines. Today we saw a few people trying to push things a little too hard with a few OCS in the 29er fleet so it will be important for sailors entering the final day tomorrow to remain calm, to really believe in themselves and their ability, and crucially not make any silly mistakes,” concluded Ayton.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “Going into tomorrow things are really close across a number of the classes but particularly in the 420 boys, and Radial boys both with two races to go, and it’s all to play for in the RS:X girls and 29er with three races to go so I’m really excited about getting out there tomorrow and watching the events unfold, it will be a great climax to what has been a great week.”
Racing is set to resume at 10.55am tomorrow (Friday 5 April). Conditions are set for 6 – 10 knots from the North East.
Sailors battled against the elements with large, unpredictable shifts proving challenging at Largs Sailing Club.
Sunshine and variable winds ranging from 5 to 15 knots made for some challenging conditions for the 333 sailors vying for championships honours today as the RYA’s premier youth racing event reached the halfway stage at Largs Sailing Club (Wednesday 3 April).
Sailors have battled against the elements over the past two days and today was no different with large, unpredictable shifts proving challenging for even the regattas most experienced sailors.
Competition was fierce in the 29er class with sailors being split into gold and silver fleets at the halfway stage. Mimi El-Khazindar and 2012 RYA Youth National Champion Ben Batten thrived in the extremely variable winds as the pair from Lymington posted two seconds, a first and discard of sixth, leaving them in third overall. Owen Bowerman and Morgan Peach finish the day top GBR boat in second overall after a 18-4-1-3, with the pair trailing the leaders from New Zealand by nine points.
“Today was a good day, we are happy with our performance in the difficult conditions. The first race was really tough, we had a bad start and then lost a lot of our options up the first beat which is never ideal but I think we recovered well. It could have been quite easy to fall into the mind-set of thinking that we had lost the first race but we managed to put that behind us and posted some good results in the following three races,” explained Bowerman.
“Racing in the gold fleet today was certainly a lot more competitive than the last couple of days where we were racing in flights. There are some really good sailors and it’s great fun sailing against top competition. It’s also nice to have some overseas competition from the Kiwis and the Irish as they are pushing us all the way. The Kiwis are tough, they are fast and manage to read the shifts really well!”
With Bowerman and Peach topping the pack of GBR boats, the ISAF Youth Worlds spot is the main priority, however the 2012 29er Euro Cup Series champions are still keen to catch their international competitors.
“Obviously at this event our main aim is the ISAF Youth Worlds spot as this is what we have been working towards over the past year, but to beat the Kiwi boys would also be nice, if it’s not this week then I’m sure out paths will cross again in the future,” said Peach.
In the RS:X Windsurfing class reigning champion Saskia Sills found form at the midway stage of the regatta as the Cornish windsurfer posted 5-8-5 to reclaim her position at the top of the female leaderboard from Noelle Finch who posted her worst score line of the regatta with a 10-9-7.
“Today was a much better day for me,” said Sills. “Yesterday didn’t go my way as I was on the wrong side of every shift. The racing this year is really tight but I’m happy that I have managed to create a seven point gap at the top. Noelle [Finch] has been racing really fast this week and there are a number of other girls who can all win races, but I just need to concentrate on my own performance and not worry about what the other competitors are doing.”
In the boy’s fleet Kieran Martin continues to reign with another impressive display adding two bullets and a second to his almost flawless score line of seven points from the nine races completed. Joe Bennett is providing stiff competition with a 1-4-2 from today’s racing, however he requires a slip-up from Martin in the penultimate day of the championships tomorrow if he is going to challenge for Championship honours.
It was a test of nerves in the 420 class as only four points separated the top five boats as they entered the business end of the regatta. Scott Wallis and Josh Voller showed their steel as the pair elevated themselves to the top of the leaderboard with a first, fourth and a discard of 12th while yesterday’s overnight leaders Tim Riley and Luke Burywood slipped into second. Callum Airlie and Joe Butterworth are third with Annabel Cattermole and Bryony Bennett Lloyd fourth, both on 28 points, only four points off the leaders.
“We were expecting today to be a lot windier than it was, when we launched it was gusting 15 knots however when racing began it completely dropped off to around five knots, gusting an average of seven which was quite nice in the end,” explained Wallis.
“There is a big group of us in the 420 class who are all of a similar standard so our aims entering the regatta were to finish within the top three. Our up-wind speed was good today along with our tactics. We are pleased with our position but know that there are still two days left of racing in which anything can happen.”
Riley, who competed at the event last year with his older brother and who sits only one point of the top spot, is expecting it to go right down to the wire on the final day of championship on Friday with the talk of Match Racing a possibility.
“I am looking forward to it! It’s much more fun when it goes down to the last race of the regatta when you are battling it out your with your mates for the top spot. It’s great to have such a good competition and to also get on really well with the sailors within your class.”
Burywood added: “I think it’s all going to depend on the points on the final day, it’s pretty close, but if we are literally as close as we are at the moment on points then we may have to start thinking about Match Racing. We will just have to evaluate the points and look at the risk and rewards and go from there.”
The Laser Radial class is proving triumphant once again for 2012 RYA Youth National Champion Ellie Meopham as the Welsh sailor posted 5-6 in two out of the three scheduled races in the gold fleet today, cementing her position 18 points ahead of Edward Jones in second. Robbie Robinson is third while Ellie Cumpsty sits fourth overall, and second girl. Michael Beckett continues to rule the Standard fleet with another bullet and a discard of sixth. Andrew Green is second while last year’s champion Hector Simpson lies third.
In the smallest fleet of the Championships, Tom Britz and Abbie Hewitt continued their fine form from day two increasing their lead at the top of the leaderboard with two race wins and a second while second placed James Henson and Olivier Greber posted 4-1-4 to sit only one point off the top spot with two discards in place.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “Today was a real challenging day, most fleets launched in 12 – 14 knots in the Largs Channel which never quite made it out to the North of Cumbrae where both the Orange and Pink course had set up shop. In the end the breeze in Largs Channel decayed by lunchtime and we were out chasing our tails in the variable breezes further North whilst the RS:X’s had concluded their day and were feet up on shore.
“I have to say the race teams find days like today as challenging and frustrating as the competitors and they did a really good job in very difficult conditions, like us they are doing their best to deliver quality, fair racing despite variable breezes and some big holes in the breeze rolling in from the East at times.
Truswell concluded: “Most of yesterday’s leaders managed to keep their heads and stay at the front of the fleets when today could have easily been high scoring and left them with a lot to do, whilst the order has mixed up a bit, in the main most of the key players from the beginning of the week are still in the game and that reassures me that despite the conditions the old adages of getting your head out of the boat, looking for the pressure and playing the shifts are still paying off.”
Racing is set to resume at 10.55am tomorrow (Thursday 4 April). Conditions are set for another day of North Easterly breeze, but stronger in the region of 10 – 13 knots.
A hat-trick for ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist on day two of RYA Youth Nationals
It was a hat-trick of race wins for RYA Volvo Team GBR’s 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist today as Tom Britz and his relatively new crew Abbie Hewitt shined on day two of the RYA Youth National Championships (Tuesday 2 April).
It was a case of snakes and ladders for many of the youth classes who each completed the full scheduled series of races today as the Firth of Clyde yet again threw up a day of Easterly breeze with shifty and challenging conditions across the four race course areas.
Britz, who was crowned 2012 Four Star Pizza ISAF Youth Sailing World Champion and SL16 class World Champion in the space of a fortnight last summer with Rupert White, posted three scintillating race wins to overtake yesterday’s leaders James Henson and Olivier Greber in the Spitfire class.
“We had a great day today in the tricky conditions,” he said. “It was all about sticking with the fleet and trying to stay in front when you can and catch up when you needed to. Three races wins was exactly what we needed as it puts us on joint points with the guys who got three bullets yesterday.”
“Our main aim is obviously to try and win the event but as we can’t qualify for the ISAF spot this year, it’s more about gaining some experience within this fleet. To be honest, with such a good fleet this year, it could have been any one of us winning the races today,” admitted Britz.
“Abbie and I haven’t been sailing together for too long so it’s nice to see some good results come in which shows that our partnership is working and that we are going in the right direction,” concluded Britz.
Kieran Martin was unstoppable out on the RS: X windsurfing course as last year’s champion stayed true to his form posting an excellent three bullets, adding to the two from yesterday and cementing his position at the top of the leaderboard. Joe Bennett posted a second and third, whilst discarding a ninth from race five leaving a six point gap between himself and Martin.
It was all change in the girls RS: X fleet with Noelle Finch leap-frogging yesterday’s leader and 2012 RYA Youth National and ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist Saskia Sills.
Sills had a disappointing day by her usual standards posting 11-18-5, not being able to get to grips with shifts and leaving the door wide open for Finch who capitalised with a 3-6 and a discard of 10.
“Today we raced on a different race course to yesterday which provided different challenges but with the same shifty and gusty conditions so it was very interesting,” explained Finch.
“I’m happy with my results today and it’s obviously nice to finish the day at the top of the leaderboard on day two of the regatta.”
Finch continued: “We have still got a long way to go with a lot of races and with these conditions anything can happen. There are some very good windsurfers in the fleet this year compared to last year’s regatta with some good girls so I think it is going to be very tight. I’m just going to do my best and concentrate on getting myself around the course the fastest and we will just have to see what happens.”
Girl’s 29er pairing, Charlotte Hooper and Molly Brown revelled in the conditions scoring 1-1-2-4 from their four races today to impressively move from 11th to second in the 29er rankings.
“We are really happy with our results today,” expressed Hooper.
“It was our favourite sailing conditions today, even though it was very shifty, once you got the right side of the shift it was fine and we got some nice speed today.”
Brown added: “Yesterday we had a good opening day to the regatta and today is even better, we are really pleased with the two bullets. We just need to keep it up, we didn’t expect to start off so strong, we were aiming for top three girls so to be sitting second overall and first girls on day two is pretty cool. We usually start a regatta off really bad and work our way up so this is a nice surprise!
“We finished last year’s regatta third girls, so our aim at the end of the week is definitely to be first girls! If we continue to post consistent results and if the wind starts to drop then we should be in with a chance as we prefer the lighter winds.”
The 29er boys from New Zealand continue to lead the fleet, four points in front of Hooper and Brown after two firsts and two seconds today. Owen Bowerman and Morgan Peach have moved up two places to fifth after a 1-5-4-4 for today’s efforts.
In the Laser Radial fleet the shifty conditions played to Ellie Meopham’ s advantage as the Welsh sailor scored a 7-1-3 to top the overall Radial leaderboard, however, Meopham admits that there was an awful lot of luck involved in her three races today.
“Today was all about keeping your eyes out of the boat, looking for the gusts and then trying to predict which way they are going to lift you – it sounds pretty simple but I think there was a hell of a lot of luck involved!
Meopham overtakes last night’s leader Edward Jones and admits it’s a nice feeling to be racing at the top of the fleet and to be beating the male competitors.
“It’s always nice to beat the boys,” laughed Meopham. “It’s very satisfying as it is something I’ve always wanted to do, so it’s a nice feeling right now. There are a few girls at the top of the fleet this week that are not too far off so it’s really nice to be racing with my friends at the front.”
Edward Jones continues to lead the way in the boy’s fleet ahead of Scotland’s Iain Mclaughlan in third overall. Ellie Cumpsty is fourth overall, second girl, after finishing her day with a race win. In the Larger rig, Michael Beckett continues to dominate the Standard fleet opening up a staggering 12 point gap over second and third placed Jack Preece and Andrew Green.
This week the 420 fleet looks set to go right down to the wire with a marginal five point gap separating the boats from first and fifth. Tim Riley and Luke Burywood came out on top for the second day running posting a 8-2 in the first two races, however in the last race they dropped back to record a 16th, however, with the first discard coming into play it allowed them to remain on top.
Scott Wallis and Josh Voller have leaped up the table after discarding their 10th from the opening day, and scoring two bullets and a seventh today. Annabel Cattermole and Bryony-Bennett Lloyd are comfortably occupying top girls spot for the second day running, sitting in third overall.
With the Radial and 29er classes splitting into a Gold and Silver fleets tomorrow the top sailors will go head-to-head for the first time at the event as the competition hot’s up for day three at Largs Sailing Club.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, said: “Today saw another glamorous day in sunny Scotland! Much warmer, but with lighter breezes than yesterday. Thankfully the Easterly established quickly which set the tone and dictated the priorities for the day.
“The sailors leading the fleets have all been pretty astute, getting their heads round the shifty conditions which really are a challenge particularly as it often necessitates pursuing the gains a bit more aggressively which is somewhat contrary to the typical strategy of carefully managing the risk, sticking to the middle and try to remain consistent.”
Truswell concluded: “I am particularly pleased to see the girls doing so well across the fleets, as I know Sarah Ayton will be rooting for the them to stay on top for the end of the week when she arrives tomorrow! We are hoping to mix things up a bit tomorrow as we start to get to the business end of the regatta, the plan is to expose the 420 and Spitfire sailors to some different conditions by taking their course North of Cumbrae and give them an opportunity to stretch their legs on a bigger course which will be interesting.”
Racing is set to resume at 10.55am tomorrow (Wednesday 3 April). Conditions are set for a similar strength and direction as today, approximately 7 – 10 knots easterly.
Spells of sunshine and a shifty 12-14 knots of wind greeted the 333 sailors vying for championships honours this week at the 2013 RYA Youth National Championships as they took to water for a cold yet cracking opening day of competition (Monday 1 April).
Racing kicked off, as scheduled, at 11:30am with the nation’s finest Youth sailors and windsurfers joined by competitors from Ireland, Serbia and New Zealand completing the full schedule of races as they engaged in a thrilling day of racing on the Firth of Clyde.
The RS: X windsurfers were the first to complete their three races with last year’s reigning champions Kieran Martin and Saskia Sills exhibiting composure and showing their intent to the 20 strong RS: X windsurfing fleet.
Martin asserted himself at the top end of the fleet from the word go clinching wins in the opening two races followed by a second in the final race of the day.
“Today was a great start to the regatta for me and I’m really happy with my results,” enthused Martin.
“In the last race of the day I messed up the start as I went the wrong way and decided to try a different style of windsurfing which is a bit faster but also more risky which didn’t work out, but I somehow managed to claw it back so I’m not too worried.”
“It’s a really competitive fleet this year with some great sailors. I got pretty lucky with the shifts in the opening two races; it’s so shifty out there which makes it quite tricky at times. With the same expected conditions throughout the week anyone can do well and gain a big lead which is what happened in the last race.”
Martin, 18 from Carsington Water Sailing Club, has competed at the annual event twice posting a third in 2011 and first in 2012; winning selection to represent Great Britain at the ISAF Youth Sailing World Championships where he finished 9th.
“Last year I won the event and was selected to go to the ISAF Youth Worlds which was a great experience but I messed up my chances with a few black flags which ruined my overall result. I definitely want to go back and make amends for what happened last year which means me winning the event this week!”
2012 European Sailing Federation RS: X Youth Champion Joe Bennett is hot on the heels of Martin as he clinched a bullet in the final race of the day, determined not to let last year’s champion take an unassailable lead on day one of the regatta.
Saskia Sills was a cut above the rest in the youth windsurfing ranks throughout 2012 and has started her second RYA Youth National Championships off strong with a consistent 5-4-3 to lead the female fleet. Noelle Finch lays sixth overall, five points behind Sills while Imogen Sills, twin sister to Saskia, lies seventh.
In the smallest fleet of the regatta with six boats, James Henson and Olivier Greber dominated proceedings in the Spitfire class as they nailed a hat-trick of race wins ahead of 2012 ISAF Youth Worlds gold medallist Tom Britz and his crew Abbie Hewitt who secured three seconds to keep them within touching distance of the top spot.
“It was a great start to the event” said Henson on their three bullets. “We were definitely hoping to get some good counters in on the opening day but to get three wins is a lot better than what we had expected.”
Greber continued: “We have done a lot of work over the winter working on our routines and have been preparing hard for this event. We actually really enjoy the shifty conditions and it has been pretty unpredictable but we played it quite well and we love the breeze as well so it’s been a great opening to the event.”
Henson and Greber have been sailing together for just under two years and finished last year’s event in fourth, however since last year’s champion Rupert White has now moved onto the Olympic programme, the pair from Dorset feel this could be their year.
“The fleet is going to be competitive this week and Tom (Britz) will provide stiff competition, but we have re-evaluated a few things over the past year and now have our sights set firmly on the ISAF Youth Worlds spot at the end of the week.”
Joining the Spitfires on Race Course B situated between Largs and Cumbrae was the 420 class where Tim Riley and Luke Burywood lead the way with a 1-2-5 from their three races today. James Taylor and Tom Lovesey posted a 5-4-1 putting them second overall and Scotland’s Callum Airlie and Joe Butterworth sit just behind in third with a 7-1-4 for their efforts today.
Burywood said: “I think they were definitely the hardest conditions we have ever sailed in, it was really tough today! We are happy with our results and will continue to move forwards throughout the week. I have only been sailing the 420 for six months so we are not putting ourselves under too much pressure, although it would still be nice to do well!”
Leading the charge in the female 420 fleet is Annabel Cattermole and Bryony Bennett Lloyd. The pair posted a 2-8-3 to see them sitting in fourth overall, 11 points ahead of Jemima Lawson and Lily Summers who finished the opening day with a consistent 9-6-9.
Out on race course area A, where racing was split into four separate flights and being the largest fleet at the regatta with 110 boats, the Radials saw three races take place with conditions a lot colder than on the inner courses. Edward Jones finished today top of the leader-board with two bullets and a third to his name. Ellie Meopham finished one point behind in second and leads the female fleet ahead of Ellie Cumpsty who sits third overall after two wins and a fifth.
In the larger Laser standard rig, last year’s Radial champion Michael Beckett dominated the fleet posting bullets in all three races with reigning Laser Standard champion Hector Simpson in second and Jack Preece in third.
The regattas international competitors from New Zealand showed their steel on foreign waters in the 29er fleet as they took the early advantage with two race wins and a third to cement themselves at the top of leader-board. Matt Venables and Will Alloway occupy second with a steady 4-2-2 while the sibling pairing of Rob and Emma Loveridge are third.
Duncan Truswell, RYA Youth Racing Manager, commented: “We had a great days racing today with a full programme of racing in all classes across the four course areas. Racing with the backdrop of some great scenery and snow on the hills was a real spectacle and I am sure we will have got some great images.
“Whilst the conditions were very cold, the were from a sailing perspective very good, offshore and quite shifty around 12 – 16 knots making the racing tight, exciting and a real test of tactics and strategy and picking the right side and shift rather than pure boat-speed. These conditions make it tricky for the competitors to remain consistent, keep a track of the opposition and not get caught out with any big scores on the first day.”
Truswell concluded: “The overnight leaders all managed risk effectively, making sure not to get caught, stuck out on the extremities of the course on the wrong side of a wind-shift or in a big hole in the breeze and pretty much all the anticipated runners and riders have largely maintained clean score-lines. The week is shaping up to be a hard fought contest in demanding conditions, tomorrow will be see the first presentations of the yellow bib’s to identify the leaders so the pressure will start to build.”
Racing is set to resume at 10.55am tomorrow (Tuesday 2 April). Conditions are set for an East-North Easterly 10-12 knots with temperatures remaining cold.
Day 2 of the RYA Youth National Championship has finished with all measurement finalised and the last minute training now done. Racing Starts tomorrow. Good Luck to all those taking part!!!
For more information please look at :
2013 Youth Championships getting underway with training and measurement taking place today! For more information have a look at the RYA website
Better weather comes in for the Youth Nationals, although it is still chilly - Please wrap up warmly
The Scottish Sailing Institute recently took part in the RYA’s Dinghy Show. The two day event took place in London’s Alexandra Palace. This was a great opportunity to meet with the public and other exhibitors as well as being able to listen to all the great lectures and chats!
The Scottish Sailing Institute recently took part in the RYA Scotland’s Big Weekend. Luke Patience was on hand to give sailing advice and to help with presentations. The weekend also allowed the showing of the London 2012 legacy equipment including this Protector Rib (pictured)
Congratulations to Team England who won the Home Nations Cup at their frist attempt. The Home Nations Cup was awarded to the most successful Team at the Home Nations Championships which was held at Largs on the 2-3 February 2013. The team results are calculated by counting the top three boats form each Nation in each Class, including at least one male and one female's results.
1st Place - England
2nd Place - Northern Ireland
3rd Place - Wales
4th Place - Scotland
Individual results can be seen at the Events Section of this website.
12 Race Officers from around Great Britian and Northern Ireland visited Largs to attend the recently re-worked RYA National Race Management Seminar in January 2013. The Semianr was led by RYA Instructors and Olympic Race Officers Rob Lamb, Adrian Stoggall and Tim Hancock. Thanks to sponsorship from RYA Scotland the Seminar came North of the border for the first time in many years and was very well recieved by all concerned.
More information on RYA Race Management Training can be seen at the RYA Website or please contact the SSI who will be happy to help.
In 2012 fourteen aspiring Regional Race Officers have been trained by SSI's Sailing Development Manager, David Kent who doubles up as RYA's Scottish Regional Race Management Coordinator. Training Courses took place at Solway Yacht Club and East Lothian Yacht Club. More information regarding Race Management Training can be seen here: RYA Website