Please select your home edition
Edition
Marine Resource 2016

RYA Olympic Classes Spring Series - Rickham and Birrell all set

by Matt Carter on 8 Mar 2013
Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell competing in the SKUD18 class © Richard Langdon http://www.oceanimages.co.uk
The opening event of the RYA Olympic Classes Spring Series begins this weekend (9-10 March) with Alexandra Rickham and Niki Birrell returning back to competitive action for the first time since winning bronze at the London 2012 Paralympic Games.

The SKUD duo, who have been out of action for the past six months since winning their first Paralympic medal in Weymouth and Portland last summer, will be joined by Britain’s up-and-coming Olympic Classes sailors as they test their mettle on the opening weekend of the domestic Olympic Classes racing season.

Compulsory for all Skandia Team GBR Development and Transition squad members, the first of three events welcomes racing in the Finn, Men’s and Women’s 470, 49er, RSX 9.5 men and 8.5 open, and the Paralympic 2.4mR and SKUD18 classes.

'It’s certainly been a while since Niki and I have competed,' explained the four time SKUD class World Champion Rickham.

'The last time was when we won the bronze medal at the Paralympic Games last summer so we are definitely excited to be returning to the same waters of Weymouth and Portland for our first taste of competition and to kick start our Rio 2016 campaign.'

The 31-year-old continued: 'The Spring Series is always a great event and we will be entering the weekend with no expectations and to just have a fun and enjoyable event while we re-familiarise ourselves with the boat. I know Niki and I are really looking forward to getting back out on the water and it will be a great opening event to set us up for our European regattas over the Spring and Summer months.'

In one of the largest fleets this weekend, Miami Sailing World Cup 2.4mR gold medallist Megan Pascoe will be looking to build on her momentum ahead of next month’s Princess Sofia and Hyeres World Cup Regattas, while for some of Skandia Team GBR’s younger sailors the event provides the chance to put their winters training to the test and pit their racing skills against some of the top names in their respective classes.

2012 Junior World Championship bronze medallists Anna Burnett and Flora Stewart will be among the talent in the double-handed 470 fleet while there fellow Skandia Team GBR Development Squad teammates and 2012 RYA Olympic Classes Spring Series champions James Peters and Ed Fitzgerald will be looking to retain their crown and stake an early claim in the 49er class.

Meanwhile, 2012 ISAF Youth World gold medallist Saskia Sills will be vying for success in the RS:X 8.5 class as she looks to cement herself at the top of the fleet ahead of the RYA Youth National Championships in Largs over the Easter break. Joining Sills in the hunt for victory will be the 2012 Youth World and European silver medallist Kieran Martin as he enters the event reigning Spring Series Champion.

Tim Hall, RYA Competitions Manager, commented: 'We are looking forward to the first of the RYA Spring Series events at WPNSA this weekend. Not only will this be the first event of the season for the sailors, it is also the first event for race officials who are all looking forward to getting back on the water. The weather looks like giving us a variety of conditions to really test the sailors and officials alike.'

The second event of the Spring Series will also take place at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy from 13-14 April, with the finale being hosted by Hayling Island Sailing Club on the 18-19 May.

Entries for the second weekend at WPNSA are being accepted online at RYA Racing Events website with early bird prices available if you enter online by Monday 8th April. For the Hayling Island SC event, entries will be taken at registration.

The Spring Series Notice of Race can also be found in the RYA Olympic Classes Handbook, which is available from the Crew Room section of theSkandia Team GBR website. This also contains information regarding the applicable class for each weekend, key class dates and the series of qualifiers for grants.
Ensign 660Zhik ZKG 660x82Festival of Sails 2017 660x82

Related Articles

Big breeze baptism of fire for 2016 Cascais 2016 World Championship
The Cascais SB20 World Championships got off to a strong start today, Tuesday August 30 with three races The Cascais SB20 World Championships got off to a strong start today, Tuesday August 30 with three races held in testing but hugely enjoyable conditions with Portuguese sun and strong breezes.
Posted on 31 Aug
New Zealand team wins Etchells Open Europeans ahead of Worlds
The team from Auckland scored no worse than a seventh, in the four race series, to win the first regatta of the event. After two days of tricky shifting breeze in the Solent, the New Zealand Team racing Feng Shui of Andrew Wills, Anatole Masfen and Matthew Kelway, has won the 2016 Etchells Open European Championship, sailed off Cowes on the Isle of Wight, UK. The regatta is a preliminary to the World Championships which start on Monday.
Posted on 30 Aug
2016 VR Sport.TV International 14 World Championships – Day 4
Day four at the VRsport.tv International 14 Championships was a world away from the carnage of day three. Day four at the VRsport.tv International 14 Championships was a world away from the carnage of day three. The sun was high in the sky, there was a fresh breeze out in the bay, and the atmosphere at Carnac Yacht Club reflected the conditions.
Posted on 30 Aug
VRsport.tv International Moth UK Nationals at the WPNSA - Day 3
Monday saw another delay in the morning, but this time due to a lack of wind. Monday saw another delay in the morning, but this time due to a lack of wind. Signs were promising though with a clear sky out to sea, the wind switching to the South West, and clouds building over the land.
Posted on 30 Aug
Zhik sailors win 17 sailing medals at 2016 Olympic Regatta
The 2016 Olympic games are over and what a Games they have been - Zhik sailors dominated Zhik sailors won almost 60% of the medals contested at Rio de Janeiro. It was a regatta which tested sailors and gear - with one day being the most severe conditions ever experienced at an Olympic regatta. For the Zhik team riders on the waters of Rio, four years and more of hard work and dedication have paid off for many.
Posted on 29 Aug
Zhik sailors win 17 sailing medals at 2016 Olympic Regatta
The 2016 Olympic games are over and what a Games they have been - Zhik sailors dominated Zhik sailors won almost 60% of the medals contested at Rio de Janeiro. It was a regatta which tested sailors and gear - with one day being the most severe conditions ever experienced at an Olympic regatta. For the Zhik team riders on the waters of Rio, four years and more of hard work and dedication have paid off for many.
Posted on 29 Aug
Etchells Europeans - Kiwis on top after Day 1 after long day in Cowes
For the first day of the 2016 Etchells Open Europeans, PRO Phil Lawrence, prophesied that it might be a long day The top Etchells team today was Feng Shui, from the Royal Akarana Yacht Club, Auckland, NZ. Helmed by Andrew Wills and owned by Anatole Masfen, Matthew Kelway completes the line up. The team has won several New Zealand National Titles and Wills was on Jud Smith's winning team for the 2006 Etchells Worlds.
Posted on 29 Aug
NSW Youth Championships entries competition closes tomorrow
Enter the New South Wales Youth Championships now for your chance to win a Gill prize pack valued at over $350. 2016 New South Wales Youth Championships - Enter the New South Wales Youth Championships now for your chance to win a Gill prize pack valued at over $350. All entries received before the end of August will automatically go in the draw to win the prize pack which includes a wetsuit, sailing shoes, gloves and a hat.
Posted on 29 Aug
Records broken for 2016 Shag Islet Cruising Yacht Club Rendezvous
With record attendance, the annual Whitsunday rendezvous of the SICYC continues to grow from strength to strength With record attendance, the annual Whitsunday rendezvous of the Shag Islet Cruising Yacht Club (SICYC) continues to grow from strength to strength and cement its status as a major event in the annual cruising calendar.
Posted on 29 Aug
2016 VR Sport.TV International 14 World Championships – Day 3
Boats were quickly rigged, and rigorously checked for any signs of wear which could lead to a breakage. The Carnac Yacht Club was filled with a sense of purpose this morning. Boats were quickly rigged, and rigorously checked for any signs of wear which could lead to a breakage. Whilst all this was going on, whitecaps were beginning to develop across the bay, and the conditions were shaping up for what would later be referred to by Andrew Perry as a “big boys day”.
Posted on 29 Aug