From our Sailing Secretary Nicky Griffin

Looking ahead at the 2021 sailing programme

Posted by Nicky Griffin, Sailing Secretary, January 2021.

Despite the restrictions in England and Wales, we’re planning a full programme of events for you to enjoy. Obviously the programme may need to be modified but we aim to get-cracking as soon as possible and ensure members receive lots of opportunities and plenty of choice according to their needs. We will be alert to changing guidelines and, of course, making it as easy as possible for members to be and feel safe at the Club when they come.

We hope you will get out on the water this year, whether it’s to look at the mountains, practice new skills, or compete for the prestigious and historical silverware. For those who would like to race, we have a new category of start. This is for the novice sailor, junior and slow handicapped boats. Their race will start after the normal “general handicap fleet” in the morning series – and after the Flying Fifteen fleet and general handicap in the afternoon- races. The races will have a similar but shorter course.

Juniors are invited to helm or crew in the Flying Fifteen fleet – or general handicapped fleet in the morning series over the whole season competing for a trophy for the top helm or crew.

This year we will be introducing a new style of racing, the ‘time trial’ – it’s a system we experimented with last summer because it fits with social distancing arrangements. This is held over a simple course; competitors can start any time within a specific time window, and sail as many laps as they can within the time period. The boat with the fastest lap (on handicap) is the winner. The positives of this race are that you can start anytime – and by passing a transit you automatically start yourself – so do not have to jostle with others – and by repeating the same laps you can hone your performance.

We have scheduled some Open Days, so if you have friends and family locally, please come along and invite them to have a go. We will have boats ready to give them a spin. Activity Days to get out on the water, opportunities to talk to knowledgeable members about boats, rigging, maintenance and buying. Sailing Days with guaranteed safety-cover so those new to it or rusty can get out and rediscover their talent.

And for the kids?

Kids can sail at any time – of course they should be on-site with appropriate parent or guardian supervision. Family Week is in the calendar. We have a Welfare Officer in Sharon Pullen if questions or comments arise here. Junior Racing is always part of our calendar – and, dependent on demand and Government guidelines, we’re focused on kids’ activities and events.