Sailing talent Bella Fellows from Plymouth has been crowned Youth National Champion, after five days of challenging racing at the 2017 RYA Youth National Championships (8-14 April). The 17-year-old topped the podium in the 29er girls’ fleet along with teammate Anna Sturrock, beating the cream of British Youth Sailing. 

Over 370 young sailors from across the United Kingdom converged on the waters of Hayling Island for the premier competition in the youth sailing calendar which, for some, may yet provide a springboard into a future Olympic campaign.  After a close fought week, it was an agonising wait for Bella Fellows (Yealm YC) and Anna Sturrock as they crossed the line not knowing whether they had done enough to take the girls’ title, but as results came through on their return to shore, the duo’s title was confirmed. 

An elated, but surprised Fellows said: “It feels really good to have won, we didn’t really expect it but really happy.” Crew Sturrock continued: “It feels amazing to have won. It’s been great to meet up with everyone and have some good racing”. 

The pair will now continue their training in the run up to international events across Europe this summer where they will look to build upon their Youth National Championship’s success.

Mark Nicholls, Event Director, said: “It’s been an absolutely fantastic week at Hayling Island. The club and the volunteers are outstanding and have really supported a wonderful event.

“The weather has cooperated and the standard of sailing has been the highest I think I’ve ever seen. It’s been a brilliant event.”

For further information please visit the RYA Youth National Championships website, British Youth Sailing Team Facebook page and on Twitter at @RYAyouthracing. Share your comments using #RYAYouths.