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Derbyshire Youth Sailing Series at Errwood Sailing Club

by Mike Haynes on 6 May 2008 3 May 2008

Optimists dominate at Errwood event

The top three places at the third Derbyshire Youth Sailing series event held at Errwood Sailing Club on Saturday 3rd May were taken by Optimist class dinghies ahead of Lasers, Toppers, an Enterprise and two Graduates, in the 21 strong fleet of competitors.

At the head of the pack and taking his first series event win, was 12 year old Benjamin Haynes of Carsington Sailing Club. He was in close competition with the next two sailors, 13 year old Ben Pole of Staunton Harold Sailing Club, who came second, and Benjamin’s younger brother, 9 year old Joshua Haynes who was third overall and first Junior sailor.

Moderate south – south easterly winds that included small gusts affected by the local topography and woodlands around this Goyt Valley reservoir just outside Buxton, gave some tricky conditions for the young sailors to overcome. However, the challenges were the same for them all and the three young Optimist sailors came out clearly on top in the conditions.

Errwood Sailing Club Commodore, Devika Dobson noted “It was wonderful to see the fleet spread out across the reservoir and the young sailors enjoying the competition with such enthusiasm and skill. Our club is looking to grow substantially during this Olympic sailing year. The Goyt Valley is such a beautiful place to sail in." With this sort of enjoyment to be had, we are confident that we will soon see an increase in our numbers and particularly with young sailors who gain so much from the sport.”

Ben Pole took the first race with Ben and Josh Haynes close behind. Jenny Saunders (16) of Staunton Harold SC and Alasdair Pears (16) of Carsington SC were fourth and fifth in their Laser Radials and at lunch time after the first race it was interesting to note the sailors reaction to the leaders being all Optimist dinghies. The next two races saw Ben Haynes take two first places to win the event overall but in the second race, Harry Levick (16) of Carsington SC took second in his Laser full rig ahead of Ben Pole and Josh Haynes in third and fourth respectively.

With another short break after the second race, the results so far left it all to play for in the third race of the day but Ben Haynes kept it together with a close fought race against his brother right up to the line, that resulted in Josh taking second place, with Ben Pole in third, Harry Levick came in fourth and Ben Crossdale (14) of Ogston Sailing Club in his Laser full rig achieved a second fifth place.

The series positions after three events still see Ben Crossdale in the overall lead and Ben Haynes having consolidated his second place with his brother Joshua Haynes rising to 3rd overall and continuing to dominate the Junior series in his efforts to retain the Ellen MacArthur Trophy. In fourth overall is Charis Richardson (15) of Trent Valley SC followed by Tommi Cluley (15) of Staunton Harold SC in fifth.

The quality of sailing and competition enjoyed by the Derbyshire Youth Sailors bodes well for this years’ National Schools Sailing Association, National Youth Regatta being held at Carsington Water between 20th and 25th July. The Derbyshire team will be competing both as individuals and as a team to secure as many of the National trophies as they can. The DYS organisers are still keen to hear from sponsors and supporters who want to take advantage of this national event coming to Derbyshire.

The next Derbyshire Youth Sailing series event for 2008 is to be held at Combs Sailing Club on Saturday 10th May. Briefing is at 10:30 with the first race at 11:00. Details and pre-event registration is available, along with lots more information, all on the website.