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Tom Gillard features on the Streaker stand at the virtual RYA Dinghy Show

by Veronica Falat 1 Mar 2021 07:29 GMT
Tom Gillard's first Streaker Nationals win © Bill Strange / R Finch / K Pountney

The Streakers were one of a number of classes to feature their own live talks at this year's virtual RYA Dinghy Show. Neil Firth's interview with eight times National Champion Tom Gillard attracted a live audience of over 40 Streaker fans for what proved to be a thoroughly entertaining hour.

Neil's valiant attempt at a Piers Morgan style "Life Story" provided a few slightly embarrassing moments for Tom, as they walked through the photos of his early life, including several from the Yachts & Yachting archives.

Tom was second overall at his first Streaker Nationals, age 16, and he's been on the podium in all but one of the 15 Nationals sailed since then, winning eight of them. It's an impressive record, and he doesn't show any sign of stopping!

Questions from the audience showed that they were also keen to hear Tom's tips for sailing their Streakers. Tom provided lots of useful advice on the finer points of Streaker sailing, including the raking dagger board and the setup of the various mainsheet arrangements seen in the class. There was something for everyone, from novice to seasoned racer.

Tom's continued enthusiasm for the class was evident and he confirmed that he would be aiming to regain his title at the 2021 Streaker Nationals at Staunton Harold. Thank you Tom, we'll see you there!

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