The RYA Youth National Championships, held at the Welsh National Sailing Academy, Plas Heli, in April will see 350 of Britain’s top youth sailors gather for the chance to be crowned 2016 Youth National Champion in their respective classes.

The Youth Nationals is the first stage in the selection process for the best young British sailors in the country to represent Great Britain at the Youth Sailing World Championships in Oman (27 December – 4 January).

The Youth Sailing World Championships is the premier international youth sailing event in the world and a proven talent indicator, with past notable winners including multiple Olympic medallists Ben Ainslie, Iain Percy and Sarah Ayton.

Following the annual British Youth Sailing performance review, the age for selection to the British Youth Sailing World Championship Team will revert back to the same as World Sailing’s restrictions, namely under 19 on 31 December 2016.

Youth Racing Communique 1601

RYA Youth Racing Manager, Mark Nicholls explained the change: “Whilst the change to the age of selection for the team that represented us in Malaysia last year worked well and delivered many successful outcomes, including some really notable performances, there were also some unforeseen challenges.

“This, coupled with the difficulty that can be experienced when preparing a younger age group of sailors for such a highly competitive international environment, meant that the RYA felt it would be sensible to fall in line with World Sailing’s age for selection.

“We will select our Youth Worlds Team based on performances at Class Worlds or Europeans in the summer, to confirm their ability to finish within the top eight in the World. This should also ease a congested calendar by not running a dedicated selection event and give some time back to the sailors.

“The British Youth Sailing Team aims to produce sailors that are mentally and physically robust, excel under pressure and are non-dependent decision makers. We want fast sailors on the water that have passion, professionalism and a performance mindset. The change to the Youth Worlds age of selection meets these objectives. 

“The EUROSAF events will maintain their current selection criteria of under 19.”

You can now enter online here.

Laser Radial, 29er and 420
Entry Deadline – midnight Sunday 13 March 2016
Late Entry Deadline – midnight Sunday 20 March 2016 (will incur a late fee and entries will not be accepted after this time)

Laser Standard, RS:X and Spitfire
Entry Deadline – midnight Sunday 28 February 2016
Late Entry Deadline – midnight Sunday 6 March 2016 (will incur a late fee and entries will not be accepted after this time)

You can follow the event build-up and see the action unfold on the British Youth Sailing Team Facebook page and on Twitter at @RYAyouthracing. Share your comments with us using #RYAYouths.