Young sailers look forward to Dizzy Duck race

There was no sailing at Sidmouth Sailing Club midweek last week due to another period of strong winds that prevented the sailors putting to sea, writes Keith Brodie.

Saturday, however, produced some much better conditions and a dozen boats entered the two races. John Jones was the only sailor to compete in a Topper and so had two easy races against himself and was pleased not to have lost! The remaining fleet consisted of Lasers and Scorpions. The Hayman family, in the shape of Alex helming, with his father Andy as crew, won both races but were chased hard by Oliver Salter and Heather Martin, a regular pairing in the past but who, for various reasons, have not been able to sail much together this year. It was good to see them back sailing together. The Haymans were also made to compete by Nick Jennings and Scott Tobin and James Salter and Connor Fitch, who had a good day’s sailing in the sunny but brisk, conditions.

The Lasers were led around the course by Chris Clapp, which gave Bob Vine something to think about as it is very often that Bob is the leading Laser and he will have to try a bit harder if he is to retain his hold on the series cup.

Chris Riley kept the safety boat busy during the racing. He seemed intent on practising his capsize drill or at least that appeared to be the case as he certainly spent quite a lot of time in the water. Chris is relatively new to the club and is still getting used to our water, or so it seems.

The forecast for the weekend is, as I write, not looking particularly good but I hope that the forecasters have got it wrong, especially for Sunday, as the famous or perhaps infamous Dizzy Duck race is due to be sailed on Sunday morning at about 10.30am.

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Dizzy Duck has not happened for a number of years as the number of juniors in the Club had declined to a point where there were simply not enough for the fun team racing of this event.

However, the junior training that the club has been offering to junior over the last two or three years has meant that, this year, we have nearly 30 youngsters entered.

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The race that will see probably six team members to one small Topper, competing by sailing a specified course and having to undertake various tasks set for them by the club’s instructors. All the while, they will be being soaked by water pistols and buckets of water.

All good clean fun with a barbecue afterwards. Oh, how I hope for a nice summer’s day!

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