A new generation of talented sailors and windsurfers were recognised in the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards on Sunday afternoon (03 March), at the RYA Dinghy Show.

The awards were presented to each of the regional winners by double Olympic silver medallist and RYA Director of Racing, Ian Walker, and double Olympic gold medallist and 2019 show host, Shirley Robertson OBE.

Joseph Drake (18) has had a fantastic year, ranking well at various regional, national and international championships, including a win in the under-19 category at the RYA Youth National Championships. The committed Laser sailor was selected for the British Youth Sailing Squad in 2018 and is looking forward to progressing further this year, and hoping to make the British Sailing Team.

Joseph, of Oulton Broad, commented: “It was really good receiving the award, it’s nice to know that the effort is being recognised and you’re moving through and progressing up into the next level of sailing.” 

RYA Director of Racing, Ian Walker, said: “Although all of the sailors recognised here today have achieved outstanding results, it’s not just about the titles, it’s so brilliant to see another generation of sailors falling in love with the sport and becoming ambassadors and role models.

“I’d also like to thank all of the parents, volunteers, coaches and all those that have offered support to all the champions stood on the stage today, without you none of it would be possible.”

Launched in 2014, the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards recognise the outstanding dedication, achievement and performance of talented young people in sailing, windsurfing and powerboating.

For more information about the RYA Regional Youth Champion Awards visit www.rya.org.uk/go/youthchampion.