Sidmouth sailors busy training and racing

The start to the sailing season has this year been mixed, to say the least, with some frankly horrible conditions with rain and strong winds accompanied by some very unseasonal cold temperatures, writes Keith Brodie.

However, last weekend was a complete change with the sun shining both Saturday and Sunday, requiring everyone to search out the sun block which hasn’t been needed until now and the wind co-operated, albeit fairly gentle on Saturday. This was helpful as the first training course of the year got under way. Held over four days (two weekends) it is a major commitment by Sidmouth Sailing Club involving about 10 instructors and helpers and, hopefully, by the end of the course we will have another 15 competent sailors trained to RYA standards that it is hoped will decide that sailing is a great sport and join the club.

There are nine adult and six junior students on this course, all of whom had not sailed before and it is a pleasure to see confidence build as the allotted tasks are completed, the fear and trepidation to disappear and be replaced by smiles and enjoyment.

The sailing club is proud of its training record, particularly with juniors and young adults.

“This group of 15 is doing very well and by the end of the first day were virtually all helming their boats competently. By the end of the second day they were all happily enjoying the pleasures that sailing a boat can bring.”

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To test the club members’ commitment further, in addition to spending the whole weekend teaching , the club managed to fit in a full afternoon racing program as well. Conditions were light conditions but the sunshine made up for that. A good fleet of Lasers were out to fight for line honours but sadly no Scorpions. Bob Vine took both races and seems to be steadily building a lead for the series cup.

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