Siblyback Water Warriors pile on pressure as they aim for national windsurfing final
The battle continues in the South West Zone
The Siblyback Water Warriors have pushed into the lead of the hard-fought youth windsurfing challenge after the third RYA Team15 south west event of the season at Roseland Paddle and Sail on Saturday (21 July).
Competing against the Roseland Wave Riders, the Polkerris Pirates and newcomer Matthew Pinkerton (15), sole representative of the Teign15 team who won a merit award for his efforts, the Warriors won by an impressive seven points.
In a complete change from the previous event of the series, the weather was sunny with very little wind, which presented a different challenge for the youngsters, who all did very well in a breeze which was at best 3-4 mph, and sometimes dropped to nothing.
The winning team included twins Ben and Athalie Redgrave (15). While Ben, who took second place in the 5.8m class, has been windsurfing and taking part in T15 for many years, Athalie had only windsurfed for about 45 mins before.
She finished 6th in the same class and received a merit award for such a great achievement. Winner of the 3.5m class was Jeremy Whale (11) from the Polkerris Pirates, placing first in three out of the four races.
Joe Parrott (12) from the Siblyback Water Warriors won the 4.5m class, while team-mate Jacob Henning (15) was first in every race of the 5.8m class.
However, the pressure is still on with one event of the series still to come, especially as the Roseland Wave Riders dominated the 6.8m Techno class, with Ross Warren (12) first, Paul Carbis (14) second (on his first time in this class) and Lucy Grayston (13) in third. As event organiser Marianne Bryan said:
“There is a lot of competitive tension between Siblyback and Roseland. The Water Warriors have taken the lead after this event, but anything could happen at the next!”
As the event took place on the RYA’s Push the Boat Out Day, when hundreds of sailing clubs, centres and marinas up and down the country cheered on the sailors of Team GB ahead of the Olympic and Paralympic Games and showcased the sport to the nation, the youngsters also took part in a team relay paddle race with Union Jack flags which was won by the Roseland Wave Riders.
The last event in the series will take place at Polkerris on Saturday 15 September. The winners will go forward to compete in the national final, the Team15 Champions Cup, on 1 October.
Supported by industry leaders Tushingham/Starboard and Neil Pryde, T15 was set up by the RYA to help make windsurfing more accessible and appealing to youngsters at a grass roots level.
Fun and informal training sessions take place at T15 clubs all over the country for kids up to the age of 15, which are run weekly by specialist RYA coaches.
The T15 inter-club championship takes place regionally over the summer adding a competitive edge and race training for those keen to hone their skills. Kit can be borrowed from the clubs and the cost of sessions is kept low.
To get involved with Team15 and locate your nearest local club visit www.team15.org.uk or contact the RYA 0845 345 0400.