Youth Sailing Gets A Big Boost
29 March 2011
Youth sailing gets a big boost this Saturday 26th March as many Young Guns team up for a showdown on Pittwater at the inaugural Melges Young Guns Regatta being hosted by Avalon Sailing Club on Pittwater, NSW.
The rules are quite simple – for U30 sailors (17-30 years of age), two crew members must be female, races 2 and 5 must be skippered by a female crew member, the sailors attend the mandatory after party hosted by Avalon Sailing Club and it must be fun!
Youth sailing has been afforded a huge opportunity by the Melges Asia Pacific distributors Heath and Tracey Walters and a good number of generous private Melges owners. These supporters of youth sailing have offered up their Melges 24s and 32s free of charge to an array of youth sailors who will combine together to compete as the nine inaugural young gun crews in a five race sprint series concluding with a U30’s party hosted by Avalon Sailing Club where the presentation of the Young Guns Perpetual Trophy will be awarded to the winning crew along with a generous sponsors prizes of Holey Dollar Rum provision and associated regalia and Gill® product.
Competing in this year’s inaugural event will be quite a mixed bag of Sydney and Queensland elite sailors alongside number of our local youth from numerous sailing classes.
Past world champions and currently ISAF world ranked #2 Australian Women’s Match Racing Team Nicky Souter, Nina Curtis and Olivia Price will take a break from training before leaving for Europe next week to compete in the World Cup circuit and are teaming up with Olivia’s current AUS WMR Champion crew Natalie Greentree to have some fun on a Melges 24.
Another team with past Farr40 World Champion crew and prominent 16ft skiff sailor Daniel Turner and a gun predominantly female skiff crew including two Clancy sisters Georgia and Alanna, Skye McFadyen and AUS World Youth Team’s Annalise Gilbert will be joining up with young Ryan Wilmot in the company of his Farr40 current World Champ father Bob overseeing the action on board.
Queensland will be represented by Melges gun sailors Nick and Sarah Moriaty sailing with Sydney 49er sailors Bryce Waters and Harry Bethwaite, AWMRT new member Lucinda Whitty together with Declan Rohr from the 29ers and Alex Chitt.
Our 18fter youth sailors will also be on show with a team of Chapman brothers Andrew and Will joining in the fun with young 29er sailor Nina Long and a couple of guest sailors aboard.
The locals are represented with two teams from Avalon Sailing Club headed by 49er sailor Peter Kendall and another crew by Damien James, both crewed by local club youth sailors from various classes and a number of family members amongst them too.
Heath Walters of Melges Asia Pacific who has generously provided four Melges to these youth teams will join up with YNSW’s Andrew “Cribby” Cribb and some keen 29er class sailors Penny Kendall, Sam Ellis and Emma Knighton.
A further two crews of note will be world championship 29ers sailor Ash Rooklyn combined with a high end team of past 29er and current youth match racers including Dave O’Connor, Jay Griffin, Anna Kendall and Sophie Turner, and local Melges sailor Daniel Nixon stacking the boat with match racers Ted Hackney, Sean O’Rourke and their talented sailing girlfriends Sarah Ryan and Nina Krampe.
It’s a feel good regatta supported by many sailing enthusiasts who believe in investing their time and energy towards our youth sailors. It has been primarily coordinated by a youth organising team and mentored by some prominent sailing stalwarts who just can’t help themselves when opportunities arise such as this.
With such a great concept, coupled with the support of many industry chiefs, sailing celebrities, stalwarts and volunteers, the event can and will become one of the great spectacles of youth sailing in the future.
Spectator boats will be on hand and emanate from the crane area at RPAYC to take viewers out on the race course from 9:30am. Avalon Sailing Club will also be a great vantage point to watch the action. Racing will commence at 11am and conclude at approximately 4pm.
Further information can be found on the Avalon Sailing Club’s website www.avalonsailingclub.com.au