Please select your home edition
Edition
Naiad

British Keelboat Academy set for busy racing season

by Matt Carter on 23 Feb 2013
Sea Survival training - British Keelboat Academy RYA http://www.rya.org.uk
The British Keelboat Academy, a joint keelboat racing initiative between the RYA and UKSA, is now ready for a busy racing season following the conclusion of what has been an intense winter training programme at the UKSA headquarters in Cowes, Isle of Wight.

Between October and February the BKA has run four shore-based weekends for its squad, comprising of 36 sailors aged between 18-24. The weekends were aimed at furthering the sailors’ knowledge of campaign planning, as well as providing a selection of one day professional courses which included First Aid, Diesel Engine Maintenance and Sea survival along with fitness testing, media training, sponsorship, Tides, Racing Rules, Rig setup and sail controls.

Jonty Cook, who took on the role of team manager/crew boss for ‘Interceptor’ (First 40.7) explains how valuable the shore-based weekends have been in giving him the experience to be able to get a boat and crew ready to perform to their full potential at events.


'One of the most useful parts of the shore-based weekends was the day we spent at Worthy Down army base in Hampshire, where we worked as crews to complete various command tasks. This was valuable as it allowed us to interact as a crew, sometimes under timed conditions, which only added to the pressure! It was useful as we could see how each individual operated, where their strengths were and what weaknesses needed addressing.

'Back in the classroom, we had talks and workshops designed to enhance our knowledge of the sport and hopefully give us an advantage when racing. We had a Solent Tides talk from Phil Devereaux, which was useful in providing us with both an overall understanding of how the tides work in the Solent, as well as useful nuggets of information which may come in handy later in the season.'


Oxford-based sailor Cook, a current Southampton University student, concluded: 'At the final shore based weekend in February, John Doerr came in and gave us a talk on the racing rules of sailing, and updated us on the new amendments. This was particularly useful as having a sound knowledge of the rules will allow us to be more confident on the water when we get into situations with other boats.'

The BKA has also provided their new recruits with an insight into what life is like after the British Keelboat Academy, which Ed Hampton-Matthews, who is in his first year of the Academy following selection in September 2012, explains: 'It was great to have BKA graduates Sam Goodchild and Nick Cherry attend the shore-based weekends to present talks about their time with the BKA and what they have been doing since. It was great to have the chat as it showed us where we can go and what opportunities are ahead of us.'


This season, BKA sailors will be campaigning the ‘Kolga’ (Farr 45), ‘Interceptor’ (First 40.7), ‘La Reponse’ (First 40), ‘Alice’ (J109) and ‘Magnum’ (Kerr 40). ‘Kolga’ and ‘Alice’ are entirely crewed by the BKA squad sailors, while the others have seen squad members step on as part of a crew put together in conjunction with the BKA.

'We are aiming at winning the First 40.7 class at Cowes week this year, and all the events we are doing between now and then are going to help to develop us as a crew and form (hopefully) a successful team!' said Cook, pit and Trim on-board ‘Interceptor’.


The shore-based training weekends will be put to the test throughout the season, with the 'Interceptor' crew planning on a series of events including the Warsash Spring Series, the RORC Easter Challenge, the Beneteau Cup and Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.

The RORC Easter Challenge will be the first race of the competitive season for many of the BKA sailors. With the event allowing coaching to take place during racing, it is a great opportunity for the BKA sailors to continue to train for the season ahead. This will be followed by the Warsash Spring Championships over the weekends of 20-21 and 27-28 April.


Ash Holmes, BKA Squad Coach, added: 'The sailors have performed well over the winter, improving on their fitness, communication, teamwork and knowledge. Over the next couple of months, the teams will be out training and applying what they’ve learnt ahead of the 2013 racing season. We would like to thank all the coaches and industry experts for their input and support during the BKA shore-based weekends.'

For more information about the British Keelboat Academy please visit the BKA website.

Wildwind 2016 660x82North Technology - Southern SparsNaiad

Related Articles

Clipper Round the World Yacht Race - Crew catch up - Meet Dhruv Boruah
After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations After crew members have completed their global ocean adventure, some go back to their previous lives and occupations, some decide on a future in the marine industry, some take time out to assess their next move in life and others seek their next challenge.
Posted on 27 Aug
Changing of the Guard at Melges 20 Worlds, Freides takes over
The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship featured two races under shifty conditions 2016 Melges 20 World Championship - The second day of racing at the 2016 Melges 20 World Championship hosted by Marina di Scarlino/Club Nautico Scarlino featured two races under shifty conditions, shaking up the standings and making Drew Freides' Pacific Yankee the new leader with a one point advantage over Michael Illbruck on Pinta now seated in second place.
Posted on 27 Aug
Vendée Globe – Yann Eliès and his team relaunch 60-ft IMOCA in Lorient
Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses. Yann is now on the final stretch before the event and will be taking part in the three training courses organised at the Finistère Ocean Racing Centre in Port-la-Forêt (Brittany). He will also take part in the Azimut Trophy. Yann Eliès tells us about the work that has been done and what lies ahead in the final part of his preparation.
Posted on 26 Aug
Vendée Globe – A long trip between France and Iceland for Heerema
After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. After completing two solo transatlantic crossings in the spring, Pieter Heerema is currently on his third major trip. Thanks to this voyage from France to Iceland and back, the Dutch skipper is finding out more about No Way Back, the new generation IMOCA on which he will line up on 6th November
Posted on 26 Aug
Phoenix returns and Cayard is back for the TP52 World Championships
Richard Cohen will compete at the championships in Mahón, Menorca, with Phoenix, which will be skippered by Paul Cayard. The carefully assembled team includes a core group of sailors who have many years of experience in the class, but Cayard cautions that their initial objective is to learn and improve together in line with their long term goal, to be competitive on the 2017 52 Super Series.
Posted on 26 Aug
J22 World Championship - More Day 4 action-shots by Christopher Howell
Christopher Howell was on water at 2016 J22 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 4 action. Photographer Christopher Howell was on water at 2016 J22 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 4 action.
Posted on 26 Aug
2016 J22 World Championship - Day 4 action-shots by Christopher Howell
Christopher Howell was on water at 2016 J22 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 4 action. Photographer Christopher Howell was on water at 2016 J22 World Championship and provided this gallery of images from Day 4 action.
Posted on 26 Aug
Michael Marshall triumphs at J/22 World Championship
With a second place finish in Thursday’s only race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are the champions. Heading into the 10th and final race, Marshall and Chris Doyle were tied on points at 30. As the 41 teams arrived at CORK in the morning, the after effects of an overnight storm left breeze in the mid-20s, so the Race Committee postponed on shore.
Posted on 25 Aug
Michael Marshall triumphs at J/22 World Championship
With a second place finish in Thursday’s only race, Mike Marshall, Todd Hiller and Luke Lawrence are the champions. Heading into the 10th and final race, Marshall and Chris Doyle were tied on points at 30. As the 41 teams arrived at CORK in the morning, the after effects of an overnight storm left breeze in the mid-20s, so the Race Committee postponed on shore.
Posted on 25 Aug
Best pictures of the first 4 Acts of the Extreme Sailing Series™
An influx of fresh talent have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40. An influx of fresh talent, new venues and a revised race format have all added to the hype, but the greatest evolution is the replacement of the Extreme 40 by a smaller, faster catamaran: the flying GC32.
Posted on 25 Aug