Another month is flying by and I am thrilled to be able to continue sailing at the weekends, especially with my daughter as she is learning more every single race.
I am delighted to begin this blog with congratulations to all members of the British Sailing Team who represented their country during Tokyo Olympics 2020. Representing their country in the 49er class at the Olympics there have never been British gold medallists until this year, when Stuart Bithell represented the North West and became an Olympic Champion with helm Dylan Fletcher. A huge well done to Elliot Hanson representing TeamGB for his first Olympic Games and I am sure that we will see him continue to shine in years to come.
Olympic celebrations in the North West
It was fantastic to be able to attend and observe the clubs representing Stuart Bithell and Elliot Hanson celebrating their successes. Redesmere Sailing Club held an Olympic – themed day full of different water and land activities and Hollingworth Lake Sailing club subsequently organised two mornings, as weather cancelled the first planned race day for the 49er class. It was great to see Hollingworth even featured on SkyNews – if you missed the footage, please feel free to rewatch the action on our facebook page.
Regional Junior Championships
A reminder that booking for British Youth Sailing Regional Junior Championships will be going live very soon, so please keep watching the British Youth Sailing webpage for entries. This will be held at Derwent Reservoir Sailing Club held across September 25-26.
There are three fleets, Championship Fleet, Coached Regatta Fleet and OnBoard Fleet. The OnBoard fleet is for 8-13 year olds and doesn’t require owning your own boat, like the other two racing fleets. With the three different fleets there should be something for your level of sailing.
John Merricks Sailing Trust applications
This is a great option for those who would like to advance their sailing, but who may struggle to access all the equipment. The John Merricks Sailing Trust seeks to help young sailors and youth sailing organisations to achieve their goals and applications are still open. As the Official Charity Partner of OnBoard, the JMST will donate boats to deserving young sailors every year, providing them with the opportunity to progress their skills and continue to participate in the sport of sailing. The boats will be gifted to promising youngsters who display enthusiasm and commitment to the sport and who may not ordinarily have the opportunity or financial backing to achieve their goals. The application requires the young sailor to participate in the Regional Junior Championships, but they can compete in any fleet.
A huge thank you to all the clubs in the region who have already filled in the census for the year. Insights from this will be sent out, hopefully ahead of the affiliated club conference so that clubs can note any relevant points. The link will be open until the end of this month and I encourage you to contact me if your club hasn’t received the email or the representative from the club has not yet responded to this. Insights from this will be useful moving forwards to 2022 and beyond and how the clubs can be best supported in the future.
Please do also get in touch if you would like any further clarification about the census.
Club of the year
Entries for the RYA and Yachts & Yachting Club of the Year Awards are still open. These celebrate the outstanding achievement promote the hard work of sailing clubs in the UK. All RYA affiliated clubs across the UK are eligible to apply and the Awards Panel will select a finalist for each of the 10 RYA Regions as well as two ‘wild card’ entries. Your club has to nominate themselves so please do think about putting forward your club if you think there is something particularly unique and worth celebrating.
Club applications close on 20 September so get yours in now!
Save the date
The affiliated club conference will be taking place on Sunday 5 December at the Anderton Centre. It is likely that this will be a hybrid event but there will be opportunities to meet face to face and discuss club development topics ahead of the new year. Please watch the RYA North West regional area of the website for more updates and bookings for this.
RYA – recognised training centre
Congratulations to Arnside Sailing Club who have now become an RYA-recognised training centre and I wish them the best of luck for the weeks and months ahead of courses. There are more clubs who are undergoing this process at the moment, so I hope to be sharing more success stories in next month’s blog.
North West Senior Travellers
I bring good news that there will finally be some Senior Traveller events to be held in the early Autumn. A mid-week race series in the North West region for anyone aged over 50 and a great reason to get yourself sailing again!
This year, there will be a shortened series of just 3 events have been arranged which are: September 7 held at Leigh and Lowton Sailing Club, September 28 at Bolton Sailing Club and October 19 at Delph Sailing Club. There will be a £5 entry free with the first race at 11am, and two afternoon races in the afternoon.
If you wish to find out more about these events, please join the North West Dinghy Sailors Senior Traveller Series facebook group via the link below:
Winter season ahead
Finally, I encourage you all to start thinking about the colder and darker months ahead. All of the clubs and centres in the region have done a fantastic job of expanding their membership and it will be good for everyone to remain connected to their clubs during the winter season. I will be holding a club catch-up virtually on September 21 at 7pm to help clubs think about the winter season and upcoming planned social activities. Details of how to book this club catch-up will be in the September blog.
I hope you enjoy the rest of your summer, continuing to sail and host events. I look forward to seeing many of you at the club catch-up in September.
If your club would like a one-to-one chat with me to discuss any concerns or queries about returning to boating safely in the upcoming weeks and months, please don’t hesitate to get in touch by email.