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And the winners are...

by Osprey Class Association 3 May 2023 11:51 BST
The Oxford Blue - Seldén SailJuice Winter Series 2022-23 finale © Tim Olin / www.olinphoto.co.uk

The search for a new Osprey Youth Team started last month. Applications were sifted, shaken thoroughly, and drawn, and the Class Association can announce the names of the lucky winners.

Many pairs of sailors, all under 30 years old, put themselves forward for the competition, and applicants included several big names, all the way up to Olympic aspirants. The winning Youth Team would get free use of the Osprey Class boat at this year's 70th Anniversary National Championships, Hayling Island, September 2nd to 5th. What a prize!

Would Sam and Ben Whaley, of British Sailing Team and RS200 fame, get the chance to show their mettle against the best the Osprey class has to offer? Could the likes of Blaze sailor Eden Hyland and Will Gould from Hartley Boats mount a campaign against their bosses at the Osprey class builders? How would young RS Aero 5 sailors Tom Ahlheid and Mark Ripley fare together in a powerful spinnaker boat?

These were just some of the star names who went into the draw for the prize of sailing the Class Association boat, at this year's Nationals, with all entry fees paid!

A few days ago, the draw was made by the class's David Downs, and we can now reveal the lucky winners. The new Osprey Youth Team is Patrick Bonner (20) and Adam Southern (21) are both of Emsworth SC. They are both at University and when they can they now sail a Laser 4000, having found an RS200 a bit dull!

Patrick and Adam will be eager to get their hands on the Osprey Class boat, sail no 1360, which is a top spec, well tuned Mark V Hartley built Osprey, complete with full carbon fibre rig. It will be interesting to see how they cope with a symmetric spinnaker, although Adam has been practising with his dad.

This boat was campaigned in the 2022/23 Selden Sailjuice Winter Series, and came out the overall winner in the hands of Peter Gray and Geoff Edwards. Now what can the new Youth Team, Patrick and Adam, do with this boat at the Hayling Island Osprey Nationals in September? No pressure there boys!

The Osprey Class Association's Youth committee member Jamie Blake said, "I'm delighted to give a warm welcome to our newest members, Patrick and Adam. We look forward to seeing you on the water at Hayling Island in September!"

Making the draw, Osprey committee member David Downs added, "We were most impressed with the calibre of the applying teams, while the variety of types of boat sailed by the applicants is testament to the Osprey's wide appeal to all ages and types of sailors. Whether you are used to sailing single-handers or crewed boats, hiking or trapeze boats, the Osprey offers all sailors exciting sailing and close competition."

The purpose of the Class boat is to attract more new faces to the Osprey class, and the Class boat remains open for applications to borrow the boat for a period during the season, until September when it passes into Patrick and Adam's hands. Prompt applications are particularly welcome from the South Wales area, where the boat is likely to be based for the next couple of months. Application form to borrow the boat is on the Osprey class website.

2023 is the 70th Anniversary year of the Osprey class. The celebrations include the first ever, week long, Scottish & Northern Tour, the 70th Anniversary Nationals, and a Round the Island in late September. Details of these are on the class website, www.ospreysailing.org.

The 70th Anniversary Osprey Nationals is sponsored by Hartley Boats and Craftinsure.

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