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Zhik 2021 Season 2 LEADERBOARD

RYA Dinghy Show defies the Beast from the East


RYA Dinghy Show defies the Beast from the East

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Hyde Sails 2017 Dinghy Show

RYA Dinghy Show 2018 - photo © Paul Wyeth / RYA

Dear [recipient name]

The snow and ice of the 'Beast from the East' seem an age ago, but it was so heartening to see the support for the RYA Dinghy Show last weekend.

There were serious doubts on Thursday and Friday about whether the traditional start of the dinghy sailing season in the UK would go ahead, but the right call was made by Sarah Treseder and her team at the RYA, and the sailing public supported the event in their thousands. Bravo to the organisers, exhibitors and visitors.

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The theme throughout the show was 'Dinghy Sailing For Life', and we are indeed lucky that our sport can be enjoyed by all ages, but some of the presentations, and much of the talk around the show, was about how things have all got a bit too serious. It's definitely time to put the fun back into sailing, particularly for junior and youth events, and this is a theme and idea will be continuing to push. Kids won't become life-long sailors if they're not enjoying it and that has to be the priority of clubs, classes and events up and down the country, and around the world for that matter.

Mark Jardine (left) and Sarah Treseder (right) with Concours d'Elegance winner John Clementson and his Graduate dinghy 'Eclipse' - photo © Paul Wyeth / RYA
Mark Jardine (left) and Sarah Treseder (right) with Concours d'Elegance winner John Clementson and his Graduate dinghy 'Eclipse' - photo © Paul Wyeth / RYA

I very much enjoy judging the Concours d'Elegance, and John Clementson's Graduate dinghy, Eclipse, was a worthy winner this year. There were some amazingly turned-out boats, many of which are campaigned throughout the season and sailing week in and week out. Of particular note were the beautiful boats on the GP14, Firefly and Merlin Rocket stands, as well as Robert Deaves' new super-bright International OK Dinghy, amusingly and aptly named 'The Beast from the East'!

Robert Deaves' 'Beast from the East' at the RYA Dinghy Show 2018 - photo © Mark Jardine /
Robert Deaves' 'Beast from the East' at the RYA Dinghy Show 2018 - photo © Mark Jardine /

During the show we recorded many interviews which will be released on over the next few weeks. Already available is my interview with Nacra 17 World Champion Ben Saxton and videos highlighting Crewsaver's new Watersports range, Zhik's new Superwarm X and V wetsuits and a new Ladies Range and other new products at Rooster. There are loads more to come so please keep returning to the site to see them when they're ready!

Merlin 290 'Cumulus : Despite suffering from major disability, Ian Proctor, with crew Cliff Norbury, would be fierce competitors out afloat, winning the Merlin Rocket National Championships and many more - photo © Proctor Family
Merlin 290 'Cumulus : Despite suffering from major disability, Ian Proctor, with crew Cliff Norbury, would be fierce competitors out afloat, winning the Merlin Rocket National Championships and many more - photo © Proctor Family

Dougal Henshall presented a superb talk on Ian Proctor to celebrate the centenary of his birth. We had his latest article online on Monday following up from this, titled 'The Man Who Designed Racehorses'.

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There were plenty of announcements and awards at the show, firstly with the RYA naming Notts County SC as Club of the Year, declaring ten kids as Regional Youth Champions, and awarding Stone SC a new safety boat. Then we saw Alistair Goodwin celebrate victory in the GJW Direct SailJuice Winter Series, and the YJA also recognised their Young Blogger of the Year winners. The RS Games was officially launched with a little party, and this event looks like one to put the fun into sailing.

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Have fun on the water!

Mark Jardine, and Managing Editor

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