The Sail Port Stephens Junior Regatta was once again sailed out of the Port Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club on Salamander Bay as Karen Nye reports:
We had 26 very excited juniors competed over two days and we had the most amazing weather conditions. Gentle south sou westers. Really enjoyable sailing.
Some juniors were sailing in their first ever regattas and put in some really outstanding performances and showed some great improvement across the six races over the two days.
Outstanding performances by the O’Pen Bic sailors. The three who placed first, second and third. Margot Mason, Sophie Cottam and Marcus Busch had recently attended the O’Pen Bic Nationals in Perth so certainly the experience they gained from that showed over this regatta.
It was wonderful to be joined by a number of other classes this year. The Opti’s from the Soldiers Point Sailing School and also we had Laser sailor, a Sabot sailor and we also had a Flying 11 on the first day of racing.
‘The success of this event really proved that junior sailing is alive and well in Port Stephens and that the children of all ages can be accommodated in an event like Sail Port Stephens across a number of different classes of boats. Really a great success.
For Sail Port Stephens it proves again that there is growth not only in keelboat sailing not only for the event but also for the juniors and hopefully next year as well we will continue to grow our numbers.
The clash with the Combined High Schools sailing event took a number of our sailors away from Sail Ports Stephens event but we were very happy in the end to have such a good fleet.
Next year I understand that both of those events will be on different dates so we will not have the clash we had this year but still we were really thrilled to have such a good number of children on the water.
For Ports Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club again such a pleasure to be the host for that event. We really do have perfect launching facilities and great spectator facilities.
For sailing right out on the bay straight into Salamander it really as wonderful to see particularly on Wednesday afternoon when the keelboats came through and they were once again dwarfing our little tiny boats but it was a beautiful picture to have.
The dinghies in the foreground and then the keelboats in the middle and the Yaccaba headland in the background. It was a really beautiful sight.
The prize giving was thrilling for the children as well.
We had William Rae in the Laser. That was his first regatta coming in third and Takoda Nicetin in his Sabot in second, William Dunn in first place. He had sailed all six races without any breakdowns or problems so he won the mixed class.
Sail Ports Stephens is a family event and I think that is one of the big things that is coming across again this year, seeing all the families on the keelboats.
What was really nice this year is we had a couple of competitors whose fathers were sailing on the keelboats and they had obviously seen that there was a junior regatta available to their children.
That is something that I hope will grow as well next year is that more of the children of the parents who are sailing in keelboats will also come along and get involved in the junior regatta.
Ports Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club´s very popular Learn to Sail programs will start for the new season in the September School holidays and these run thru the summer school holidays.
Over this weekend on Saturday and Sunday we will have a display at Nelson Bay Marina where we will be taking names of interested families with children who may want to come along and Learn to Sail next season.
We will have two of our O’Pen Bics on display as well as a new boat the Byte CII. That is a lovely little dinghy and ideal for youth sailors and women (this is the Youth Olympics dinghy). It is lighter than the Laser and provides a great transition as children outgrow the O’Pen Bic and the Optimist but are not really big enough for the Laser.’
Full results here
For photos and news www.sailportstephens.com.au
Website link to Port Stephens Sailing and Aquatic Club
Soldiers Point Sailing School
by Sail Port Stephens Media - 11:59 PM Thu 18 Apr 2013 GMT
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