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Young sailors get set for North region winter team racing

by Fiona Spence, NEYYSA 21 Feb 10:08 GMT 25-26 February 2023
North teams in action at the Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships 2022 © Fiona Spence

Young sailors are getting set to compete in the inaugural North East & Yorkshire Youth Sailing Association (NEYYSA) Winter Team Racing Championship.

NEYYSA and Ripon Sailing Club are looking forward to hosting this weekend's (25-26 February 2023) youth and junior team racing championship - a new event for the North with up to eight teams lined up to take part.

With a wide breadth of experience amongst the entries, some teams are regularly in action while others are looking forward to their first foray into team racing. As with all NEYYSA events, participation and inclusion are key and coaches will be available to help the less experienced teams get to grips with the complexities of team racing.

The event has been organised by Imogen Gibb, Deborah Waggett, Ali Wood and Fiona Spence, who all recognised the interest and enthusiasm the region's young sailors had for team racing while attending National School Sailing Association team racing events and the Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships in 2022.

Putting their heads together they came up with the idea for a winter event, making use of Ripon SC's central location for the region and its jetties for quick team swaps. Ripon also benefits from the very active York University Sailing Club, which uses the club as their home base, and everyone involved is delighted that the students have volunteered to provide race management support at the event.

Imogen, Deborah and Fiona are all involved with NEYYSA and it made logical sense for NEYYSA to get involved to pull the event together. Ali Wood is based in the North West and brings her experience and contacts from the NW region into the event planning team.

The team racing will be sailed in RS Fevas and many clubs have loaned boats for the event.

Fiona Spence, Chair of NEYYSA, said: "It's our association's 40th birthday this year and it is exciting to be putting on a new event that is topical and reflects the ever-changing interests and appeal of sailing to the many youth and junior sailors in our region.

"It has been incredible how supportive and helpful so many people have been. Organising a completely new event can be quite daunting but the interest from all over the region and beyond has been fantastic and we are very grateful for the support from the wider sailing community."

Imogen Gibb is leading the umpiring team at the event and has pulled in several regional umpires and a few from further afield to assist. Several of the umpires are involved with the RYA Race Officials Academy. Imogen has also been in close contact with team-racing advocate Keith Sammons from kSail, who has provided much appreciated behind-the-scenes support and practical advice while the event has been in the planning.

Sailors from all over the North region are participating, including from West Kirby in the North West and Derwent Reservoir in the North East, as well as more local teams.

You can follow the action on NEYYSA's website and the NEYYSA Facebook page, where results will be posted throughout the weekend.

If a team would like to join in then there is still time to enter! Contact NEYYSA for more information.

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