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North Sails 2021 Innovation - LEADERBOARD

North East & Yorkshire Youth Travellers (NEYYTS) at Filey Sailing Club

by Fiona Spence 26 Sep 2022 02:15 PDT 17 September 2022
North East & Yorkshire Youth Travellers (NEYYTS) at Filey © Carol Blades

The final round of the 2022 North East & Yorkshire Youth Traveller series (NEYYTS) was held at Filey SC on Saturday 17 September. 36 boats arrived to a strong northerly wind and large breaking waves. After nine rounds the series was still open for several boats to take the overall win with places throughout the fleet also undecided.

The race officer launched the fleet on time but Launching through the large breaking waves challenging and the beach crew were kept on their toes assisting. Many of the fleet capsized as the wind increased significantly during the launching period and the race officer postponed racing and sent the fleet ashore.

After an early lunch the fleet relaunched and sailed on a windward-leeward course close into shore that offered some protection from the sea and wind conditions and the race officer succeeded in getting two races in before sending the fleet ashore for the day.

It was a day for solid boat handling and sensible rig size choices and Ollie Hirst's ILCA 4 dominated the results with two race wins. Tommy Whitehead in his Tera Sport also showed consistency in the conditions with a fourth and a second. Archie Burton in an ILCA 6 suffered gear damage in race two after a second in race 1 which put him at the back of the pack overall. Matthew Knowles, sailing his Tera Pro for the last time before moving out of the class enjoyed the conditions to finish seventh overall.

The Optimist sailors also revelled in the conditions with Toby Waggett, Henry Blades and Alanna Starkie showing everyone how to make Optimists go fast in strong winds and big seas. Waggett announced it was the "best day sailing this season" on his return to shore and finished third overall with Blades in fourth with Kyla Baxter's Topper pipping Starkie to fifth overall.

The Regatta division found the conditions challenging and several made the sensible decision to not go afloat in the afternoon and helped the beach crew launch and recover boats instead. They also had a coaching session on the beach where they looked at techniques to sail in big waves and how to launch and recover their boats in the waves.

Lucy Cliffe, who started the series in the regatta division but got promoted into the main fleet mid-way through the season showed how much she's improved on her first outing on the sea by finishing the first race in 19th before taking the sensible decision to head ashore.

The series held its prize-giving after sailing at Filey. It's been another fantastic year with over 120 sailors participating across the ten events and over 250 individual entries. The series promotes high quality competitive racing at the front of the fleet, with national level sailors participating but also encourages and supports less experienced sailors venturing onto the race course, or travelling for the first time.

Overall winner was Tom Bates from Ripon SC who won by just 1 point from Oliver Hirst from Scammonden Water SC. Third overall was Toby Waggett from Teesdale Sailing & Watersports Club followed by Thomas Whitehead from Filey SC in fourth. Kyla Baxter from Covenham SC was first girl in seventh.

The series also runs a north and south sub-series and these were won by Thomas Whitehead (south) and Toby Waggett (north). First juniors were Henry Blades (Scaling Dam SC) and Danny Whitehead (Filey SC). The series' regatta division encourages less experienced sailors onto the race course and provides a coach each week to support them on and off the water. The 2022 regatta winner was Harry Wilson from Filey SC with Jasper Chesnutt from Ulley SC in second.

Ethan Wild from Ripon SC showed excellent progress from his regatta division entry in 2021 to finish eleventh overall in the main fleet this year and took home the Leapfrog Trophy for most improved sailor. Filey took the Viner Team Trophy in a tight points count off from Ripon SC with Covenham SC in third. Full results are available at

The series thanks all the clubs and sailors for their support in 2022, 2023 is the series' 40th year and it is great to see the series go from strength to strength with so much regional support. The series would also like to thank the RYA regional volunteer team for their support by providing keepsake trophies for each event.

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