All photos © Dave Woodhead
In conditions normally experienced in July, three Mirror squads met up at Carsington for some joint training over the weekend of 10th and 11th March.
The RYA North and South zone squads were joined by the RYA National Junior Squad for a combination of training and racing to put into practice a lot of what they had learnt independently over the winter. This allowed the coaches to present these young sailors with some challenging big fleet start lines and crowded mark roundings, not possible at independent squad training. With an eye on the European Championship in Poole this Summer this was just the kind of early season experience needed to develop decision making amongst these squad sailors.
Each squad started both days with some intensive boat handling activities on their own. By mid morning the two zone squads had come together to build the numbers before being joined in the afternoons by the National Junior Squad for some coached racing. Saturday provided the most challenging conditions with some hard hiking needed, some blisteringly fast reaches and the odd capsize occurring in the stronger gusts.
Those that got their heads out of the boat took advantage of the gusts and the oscillating winds to play the wind shifts. Sunday provided calmer conditions but with some larger windshifts that caught the less vigilant out and rewarded those who were taking in the big picture.
On Saturday evening an excellent social was enjoyed when the club galley served up a superb meal for no less than 74 sailors, parents and coaches.