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Midlands Optimist Training Group enjoy champagne conditions at Glossop

by Debbie Smith 15 Jun 04:57 PDT 12 June 2021
Midlands Optimist Training Group at Glossop © Debbie Smith

Fifteen months after last meeting at Torside Reservoir in the Peak District, the Midlands Regional Training Group for the Optimist Class, under the direction of RYA coaches Steve Irish and Steph Harding, returned to glorious Glossop Sailing Club to sail in perfect conditions for the penultimate training weekend of the year.

Saturday offered gusty conditions all day, giving the team plenty of start line and downwind technique practice, as well as racing. A calmer, steadier breeze on Sunday saw the squad racing under much lighter, but equally challenging, conditions. It also provided a valuable opportunity to run races for many of the younger siblings - known as The Midlands Sharks - who contested a three-race series, with William Shaw (Banbury SC) taking home first place.

The eight 2020-21 Regional Training Group members are drawn from four clubs across the large Midlands region: Midlands SC in central Birmingham; South Staffordshire SC in Penkridge, Staffordshire; Banbury SC in Oxfordshire and weekend hosts, Glossop SC.

Many thanks to RYA High Performance Manager Tim Hall for providing prizes for the Sharks' racing - and to the Glossop Sailing Club team, led by Richard and Kathryn Smith, for hosting the squad and families for the weekend. The final training weekend takes place in late June at Staunton Harold, before four members of the team represent the Midlands at the Eric Twiname Championships, at Bassenthwaite, in July.

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