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Itchenor Sailing Club anticipates record entries for Schools Week

by Rebecca Oldfield 12 Jun 2016 17:58 BST 26 June - 1 July 2016
Itchenor Schools Week © Mary Pudney

Itchenor Sailing Club in Chichester, West Sussex anticipates record entries for its 64th National Schools Week Championships that will take place on 26 June - 1 July.

The annual sailing event will see students from over 40 schools from around the UK descend on the club for a week of racing around Chichester Harbour.

Since 1953 Itchenor Sailing Club has hosted the National Schools Championships, formerly known as The Public Schools Firefly Invitation Championships. Its aim was to promote inter-schools sailing competition and encourage participation in the sport. Previous winners have included double gold medallist and silver medallist Rodney Pattisson, double silver medallist and Itchenor member Ian Walker as well as international sailor Phil Crebbin.

This year will see the introduction of a practice race on Sunday 26 June for the RS Feva category ahead of the week's races. Championship racing for the Feva class will take place on June 27th and 28th with the Fireflys and 420s taking over between the 29th and July 1st.

Commodore of Itchenor Sailing Club, Charles Hyatt commented, "We are delighted with the turnout for this year's event. It is one of our long-standing annual events, with many of our most successful sailors starting out in this competition. It is great to see the racing standard get higher each year, particularly since we introduced the extra day of training. We look forward to welcoming the students to our club and wish them all the best of luck for the tournament!"

Last year saw an impressive selection of both junior and senior student sailors participate in the event which culminated with Hayling Island College being crowned the winner of the Feva competition while RGS Guildford took home the title for the Firefy championships.

A key date in the sailing calendar, this year's event is sponsored by MPI Brokers and JDX Consulting. It also marks the start of a five-year sponsorship agreement with the travel insurance specialist, MPI Brokers.

The new agreement sees MPI sponsoring not only the Schools Week Championships but the Mirror, Laser, Topper and International 420 classes in the club's Junior Fortnight which this year is from 26 July to 5 August.

MPI is no stranger to the waters of Chichester Harbour as, with its sister company Mind The Gap Year, it has sponsored the Firefly and International 420-class events at Itchenor's Schools Week at the end of June for the past nine years.

Another returning sponsor, JDX Consulting has been involved in Schools Week since 2013.

Registration to the 2016 Schools Week Championships is now open and schools can enter at www.itchenorsc.co.uk. For more information on School Week Championships contact the club office on 01243 512400.

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