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Christchurch Sailing Club Junior Week 2016

by Richard Beasley 2 Sep 2016 14:34 BST 22-26 August 2016

The Christchurch Sailing Club (CSC) Committee and Members are celebrating the success of the 2016 Junior Week. This prestigious annual event, set in and around Christchurch Harbour from 22nd-26th August, is one of the biggest youth sailing opportunities in the area.

Organisers knew they were going to have their work cut out this summer with 60 sailors aged 5-16 years old registered some weeks in advance of the event itself.

The Junior Week sailors were split into three groups Racing, FreeStylers, and Pirates depending on age, skill and experience. Each group enjoyed an appropriate programme of activities to increase confidence and competence. The Racing group, led by Rory Barnes and Race Officer team, Tony Lock and Phil Acton enjoyed 2-3 races a day and saw the regeneration of the Laser fleet this time in 4.7 rigs. We had 4 new 4.7 sailors for the week with everyone enjoying some really close racing throughout which meant that any of the top 3 were constantly in with a chance to win the series. The Topper fleet had expanded too and it was great to see 8 Toppers on the start line with a 4.2 Topper rig, sailed by Charlie Lawrence, managing to win the week overall boat for boat. The Optimist fleet was out in full force and, again, had a really good week out on the water. The 9 sailors had some really close racing, however Abi Hayles nailed the week with 7 bullets, and was the most consistent sailor out on the race course all week.

The FreeStylers group was led by the ever competent Liberty Booth. A new group introduced for 2016, FreeStylers is designed to accommodate the needs of sailors transitioning from Pirates to racing focussing on improving sailing skills and the introduction of racing. The Freestyle sailors had a successful week too managing to uplift a few of the group into the racing fleet which is one of the goals of the week. They worked on building skills up for sailing and racing which was great to see. They also had their fair share of fun with a daily game of "Shark Attack" – Shark Attack, whistle based game where a sailor has to move to said part of the boat and when "Shark Attack" is shouted jump off the boat. The success of the Freestyle experience is summed up by this parent's feedback "My daughter was in tears on Friday night, because the week had finished and she was going sailing the next day."

The famous Pirates group was headed up by Chief Pirate, Isobel Booth. This group is all about water confidence for our younger sailors aged 5 and up. They enjoyed lots of fun on the water coupled with some informal instruction with the aim of being able to sail around a shallow triangle by the end of the week. The Pirate fleet managed to achieve their goal by the Friday, it was marvellous to see 28 young sailors competently and happily executing this exercise. The Pirates also had great fun singing the CSC Pirates song, playing games on and in the water, completing a harbour treasure hunt, swimming both in the harbour and out at sea, and building a pirate raft which all the pirates managed to get on and drift around the harbour in. A Pirate Parent said "It was a great week, the kids really enjoyed themselves and were sailing by the end of the week which was great. Thanks guys."

Finally, after 5 superb days, made possible predominantly by volunteers, there was a quick turnaround between coming off the water and getting the prize giving prepared and under way in an hour's slot in the CSC clubroom. The presentation went down really well with over 120 people in attendance. A member of the CSC committee summed up the ceremony by commenting "It was great to see the atmosphere and team spirit last night, a very good prize giving and evening. You have a good team and the banter with the kids was good to witness."

Overall Results:

Laser 4.7
1Drew Barnes12112138
2Jack Acton212233212
3Roman Gill333312113
4Sophie Walker444444424
1Charlie Lawrence11112127
2Tom Browett233393115
3Marlie Hodgkinson392265523
4Freya Wigham549912425
5William Asomoa425539928
6Hayley Roberts996474333
7Alice King994646635
8Jack Dew657759939
1Abi Hayles11111116
2Adam Trevitt222433416
3Mads Fry435324218
4Finn Garner363255321
5Eva Wigham447542625
6Electra Reeves894686537
7Fran New658668738
8Millie Samuel796777842
9Jess Asomoa1010101010101060

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