by the RS Aero UK Class Association
From 29-31st October, 28 Youth Sailors ventured to the Royal Torbay Yacht Club in sunny Devon for the annual RS Aero UK Youth Championships competed for in two fleets, the RS Aero 5 and the RS Aero 7. Charter RS Aeros provided by RS Sailing enabled both new sailors to try out the RS Aero and international visitors from Italy and the Channel Islands to fly in to compete and check out the UK fleet prior to next summer’s first RS Aero World Youth Championship at Weymouth. A training afternoon on Friday enabled the fleet to get settled with Class coaches Sammy Isaacs-Johnson and Andrew Frost revving them up and bringing them back into the groove at the end of the half term week. By Saturday morning it was all on with 5 races planned due to the incoming gales expected on Sunday.
In the RS Aero 5s Tom Ahlheid (Frensham Pond) took a narrow lead against David Peaty (Draycote), both were consistent with top 4 results. Mark Ripley (Paignton) sailed a blinder to hold 3rd position overnight to be ready to make his move on day two as the breeze came in. Tristan Ahleid (Frensham Pond) showed his brother he can also win races with his 1st in race 4 which the leaders were all left having to discard. In the RS Aero 7s Jack Miller (Felpham) demonstrated his steadily improving form again and after a slow start knocked home 3 bullets in races 3, 4 and 5 to top the overnight ranking. Matt Banbrook (Bowmoor) held a very respectable 2nd position with Leopoldo Sirolli (Toganzzi MV, Italy) close behind in 3rd!
On Saturday evening the weary sailors enjoyed a hearty three-course dinner in the Yacht Club’s lovely dinning room, providing an opportunity to recover and meet their fellow competitors from other regions around the UK. As feared the gales came in with a vengeance on Sunday morning and soon after 09:00 it was an obvious call to abandon racing for the day, leaving Saturday’s five races to produce the final result. It was a credit to RTYC’s starting lines, the fleet’s discipline and their staying power over five windy races there were no letter scores on the score sheet at all! That is 140 race finishes with no OCSs or DNFs, well done everyone!
Many thanks to Royal Torbay YC for being welcoming hosts again and to Rooster for their continued support with a fine spread of prizes.
Next up for the UK’s young RS Aero sailors is the last open meeting of the season, the Bowmoor Bubble on 27th November. The RS Aero UK Youth Training programme enables the young sailors to check in with their friends and coaches once a month through the winter and the excitement of the large Selden SailJuice Winter Series events puts it all to the test! Checkout the RS Aero UK Events List here.