RS Aero 5/7 UK National Championship & International Open 2023 – Tenby, Wales
A fleet of 54 RS Aero 5 & 7s have arrived at Tenby Sailing Club, Pembrokeshire, to contest the 2023 RS Aero UK National Championships. Tenby’s vibrant town, welcoming sailing club and sandy beaches will provide an excellent setting for the week-long regatta and the race area off the exposed southwest corner of South Wales is sure to deliver some exciting racing.
The forecast is encouraging with a range of medium-breeze conditions, ample sunshine and just a spattering of rain. The two fleets are approximately equal in size – which will please the Race Officer, Nigel Denchfield, when laying the start lines.
RS Sailing have provided charter RS Aeros which has enticed international visitors from as far as Iceland and even Australia.
A full social programme has been arranged at Tenby Sailing Club on the harbour quay. Sailors can expect Happy Hours every day, a Penderyn Welsh Whisky tasting evening, BBQ and disco on Tuesday night, a band on Thursday evening and the Grand Awards Ceremony to finish off on Friday. The week kicked off yesterday with pre-event RS Aero coaching ashore – great for both those new to the class and a re-cap for those more experienced.
The RS Aero 7 fleet is sure to be hard fought with the whole podium of UK sailors from the recent World Championships in attendance, including Peter Barton (Lymington), Jack Miller (Felpham) and Noah Rees (Torpoint Mosquito). Past UK Champion Tim Hire (Lymington) and past runner-up Craig Williamson (Staunton Harold) will be in the chase too, along with visiting Australian RS Aero Champion, Gary Ratcliffe (Georges River).
In the RS Aero 5s, last year’s champion Jonathan Bailey (Hunts) is back to defend his title but is sure to be challenged by the ever-improving Tom and Tristan Ahlheid (Frensham) and Sam Blaker (Thorpe Bay). Watch out for the past World Champ podium placers Andrew Frost (Sutton Bingham) and David Ellis (Lymington) not letting the younger sailors have it all their own way!
The Class looks forward to contesting the annual Club and Family Champs at Tenby. The Club Champs is awarded from for the best 3 combined overall results from each Club (6 qualifiers) and the Family Champs is for the best 2 combined overall results from each Family (7 qualifiers).
Racing began yesterday, Sunday 20th August, and runs through to Friday 25th August. There are 13 races scheduled across 5 days of racing and there is a mid-week lay day planned on Wednesday to enjoy the location to it’s fullest.