Lynne Swan and Stu Swan from Weston
Sailing Club in Southampton were celebrating their win this week as they
emerged as class winners in the Skud 18 class while Natalia and Alan Hillman, from Eastleigh were also
celebrating their win in the Hansa 303 class.
Natalia said “It was an amazing regatta and I was so happy
to win amongst so many inspirational sailors,” adding “The wind on Saturday was
incredible, giving perfect conditions, and the racing was really exciting.”
With more than 120 sailors, competing
in over 70 boats, the UK’s biggest disability sailing event of its kind took
place during the weekend 05–07 July at the Weymouth and Portland National
Sailing Academy (WPNSA),
home of the London 2012 Olympic and Paralympic Games.
The RYA Sailability Multiclass
Regatta has evolved over the years and is now a real festival and a celebration
of the impact sailing can have. The event provides a whole host of
opportunities for participants of varying abilities to get out on the water.
Ten classes of boat competed, many
of which have been adapted to enable people with disabilities to compete on a
level playing field.
RYA Sailability Manager, Joff
McGill concluded: “This year’s regatta is our biggest and best so far. Along
with the exciting fleet racing and the annual Ken Ellis Pursuit Race, the event
allows those who have never even been on the water before to give it a go and
experience the freedom that being on the water brings.”
Sailability expressed their
appreciation to all the volunteers who worked tirelessly all weekend to make
the event possible, including hosts Weymouth and Portland National sailing
Thanks also went to support teams including: Chesil Sailability, the
Andrew Simpson Watersports Centre, the OTC, and the Miss Isle Sailing School.
Sailability is the national
programme run by sailing’s governing body, the RYA, giving people with
disabilities the chance to try sailing and to take part regularly.
network of more than 200 RYA-approved Sailability sites have boats and
facilities to cater for people across the whole spectrum of abilities.
To find out more about sailing
opportunities for disabled people, or those that need specific support to get
on-the-water visit the Sailability webpage. Watch the video.