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Dee SC catamaran training & development programme leads to hosting the Dart 18 Nationals

by Dee Sailing Club Hon. Sec. 9 Sep 2017 18:56 BST 24-27 August 2017

A two year training programme, supported by the RYA and in particular the RYA North West based team (special thanks to Alan Jones), has helped Dee SC to host the Dart 18 UK National championships at the end of August.

The club managed to host 65 Dart 18s and the competitors were very happy with the event sailing and social. It was a great showcase for Dee Sailing Club, the estuary and the North West in general.

The winds were generally light but the boats did get to use trapeze on the Friday. Dan Norman from Isle of Sheppey, ex-world champion won with an impressive set of results.

The club could not have hosted the event without the help of a number of sponsors and the club is very grateful to; GJW Direct and (insurers of many boats), Wirral Chamber of Commerce (event clothing), Exis Technologies (safety and rib fuel), Windsport International (Technical support on site), Deva Sail Racing, Indigo Art (prizes), The Strange Group & Co. and lastly Spire Murrayfield Hospital Wirral, the event major sponsor.

The NW based race team lead by Chris Hoppins did a tremendous job in challenging wind and tidal conditions. Dee SC also had great help from West Kirby SC in the form of loan of ribs and crews and also provision of the Jury Team lead by David Taylor.

Dee Sailing Club managed to muster a fleet of 19 boats. Will Thompson Dee SC ended up in 6th place, James Douglas (Commodore) and his wife Alison were 3rd overall.

James and Alison's son Cameron and his crew Molly Frost, Dee SC, managed a great 7th place and first Youth team. The prize for best newcomer was won by Jonny Harris from Dee SC.

Two years ago the fleet size at the club was 15 boats with 6 or 7 sailing regularly. The training and development programme means we now have a fleet of 25 Dart 18s and 4 Dart 16s. Importantly the sailors who have joined the fleet are a mixture of youth sailors (including sea and explorer scouts) but also people coming back to sailing or people completely new to sailing. The programme allows people firstly to 'get sailing' and then 'get racing'. The success is evident given that 19 boats took part in the UK Nationals.

The training programme continues during the 2017/2018 winter and people are welcome to get in touch by contacting