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RS Tera Training and Open Weekend at Whitefriars Sailing Club

by Richard Trevithick 16 May 06:13 BST 11-12 May 2024
RS Tera Training and Open Weekend at Whitefriars © D.Horner & B.Malas

Over a glorious weekend with a light variable breeze, Whitefriars SC hosted a day of training on Saturday 11 May run by Kirsty Scott from the South West RS Tera Association, followed by an Open meeting on Sunday 12 May.

In total, 15 young sailors participated over the weekend, with 11 competing in the open, hailing from Starcross YC, Exmouth SC, Chew Valley SC and Whitefriars SC. Experience levels ranged from seasoned winter squad sailors to those taking part in their first ever race!

Report from Sophie Trevithick (aged 12)

"On Saturday we did trigger-pulls and we learnt what they are and how to do them. We also learnt ways to make you faster and slower, raising the daggerboard, adjusting the kicker, depending on where the wind direction is and we did loads of activities and games to show you ways to use them and make you more confident. We also did slowing down at the starting line, so that you weren't going over and can just hover.

On Sunday we did racing. After getting changed and with boats rigged, we had a race briefing. We were shown all the flags, how the races and starts work and then they made sure everyone was signed-on, before we left the shore.

We put into practice the skills we had learned from Saturday, hovering before the race so that we could get a good position and we were doing trigger-pulls off the start line.

We did four races, and the idea was for the safety boat to go around the course showing you where to go for the first lap, then you would do the rest. Shortened course was signalled in the first race, because the wind dropped and it was very slow. However from the second race, the wind began to pick up and everything was quite a lot faster.

There was very fierce competition in the front and the back, so no matter where you were in the fleet you were still fighting for a new position and also just having fun with the other competitors."

The front of the fleet was indeed competitive with Tom Solly and Stefan Anderson adeptly choosing the favoured end of the line and with clear air, lead the fleet up the short beat in the first race. In the latter races, competition for space on the line was more hotly contested. As clear air was found and the breeze filled in to favour certain areas of the course, places changed quickly. The coastal sailors experienced the wind shifts typical of an inland venue and along with the light airs, were kept on their toes. The dual at the front between Stefan and Tom was eventually settled by Stefan winning by the narrowest of margins, after working particularly hard to recover his position after a costly capsize that took him down the fleet. Third place honours went to Daniel Sadler.

It was fantastic to see the new found skills gained from Saturday's coaching very clearly on display on Sunday's start line. The Race Officer also noted that those with less experience pressed the mid-fleet sailors and the front runners progressively harder in each race.

The day concluded with prize-giving and an organised jump-in and water fun!

Peter Solly, Tera Class Association SW Rep said "Whitefriars were fantastic hosts for the first of the Traveller Series events, and made everyone feel very welcome. Teras are a class focused on friendly fun and it was great to see so much of that on Sunday, as well as some super-close racing at the top of the fleet."

This is the first of the SW Traveller Series events and there are six more through the South West. For more details visit www.rstera.org.uk/south-west-traveller-series-2024

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