From the 21st of July through to the 5th of August, RS Sailing held the third quadrennial RS Games hosted by Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy.
RS Sailing has evolved from a heritage in flat-out racing classes. The brand has grown considerably from its humble roots in 1994 – incredible racing events, having as much fun on shore as on the water and making lifelong friendships are still fundamental to RS Sailing’s soul – the RS Games 2022 showcased that.
So, what does it take to pull together an event of this magnitude?
- 1 passionate brand
- 16 days
- 9 events
- 4 World Championships
- 2 European Championships
- 8 National Championships
- 2 Celebration Championships
- 16 RS classes
- 14 sponsors
- 78 feather flags
- 107 races
- 173 volunteers
- 260m² of magenta astroturf
- 326m of ribbon
- 713 RS boats
- 1,037 competitors
- 1032 volunteer days
- 2080 cups of Selden tea
- 2770 cups of Selden coffee
- 3,200 Selden fika pastries
A decade after the 2012 Olympic Games were held there, Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy have proven once again that they are continually pushing the boundaries of what racing events can be. Peter Allum, Sally Reynoldson and their team ardently host World Class events, and the RS Games 2022 was no exception. The statistics above show the colossal effort made by WPNSA and their army of volunteers to ensure that the RS sailors, their families and supporters had an incredible experience at the RS Games.
Jon Partridge, CEO (Commercial) of RS Sailing, commented – “It’s hard to put into words what the RS Games 2022 meant to RS Sailing, it’s always so inspiring to spend time at an event with our customers and we’ve been overwhelmed by the positive response we’ve received. We are so grateful to WPNSA and all our amazing partners that made this event possible. It was a truly special couple of weeks, we have made new friends, caught up with old ones and made memories that will last a lifetime”.
Racing took place over 16 days in Portland Harbour and Weymouth Bay, and the number of boats on the water was a sight to behold. Competitors relished the range of conditions, from big days in the bay to fickle shifty breeze in the harbour. Conditions created some incredible racing and resulted in true champions being crowned with their new titles.
Huge congratulations to all our new Champions;
- RS21 National Champion – Hugh Watson, Helen Watson, Susanna Bickford, Emma McEwen
- RS Feva World Champion – Joseph Jones, Charlie Howard
- RS Aero Youth World Champion – RS Aero 5 – Jonathan Bailey / RS Aero 7 – Vejas Strelciunas
- RS100 National Champion – Huw Powell
- RS300 National Champion – Paul Watson
- RS600 National Champion – George Smith
- RS700 European & National Champion – Theo Galyer
- RS800 National Champion – Tom Morris & Guy Fillmore
- RS400 Celebration Champion – Ollie Groves & Sam Waller
- RS Vareo National Champion – Luke Fisher
- RS200 Celebration Champion – Tom Hewitson & Lucy Hewitson
- RS Tera World Champion – RS Tera Sport – Ruta Mažunaviciute / RS Tera Pro – Archie Munro-Price
- RS Aero European Champion – RS Aero – 5 Chloe George / RS Aero 6 – Chris Hatton / RS Aero 7 – Martis Pajarskas / RS Aero 9 – Peter Barton
- RS500 World Champion – Tim Wilkins & Heather Wilkins
Alex Newton Southon, CEO (Design & Technologies) of RS Sailing commented, “Congratulations to all the new champions from the RS Games and to all 1037 competitors that took part. It was incredible to see all sixteen classes racing, from the RS Tera to the RS21, and we’re so proud that our humble classes get so many people involved in our amazing sport”.
Events like these are not possible without generous partners, and RS owe huge thanks to Rooster, Selden, Harken, Lifejacket, Marksetbot, Digital Sailing, RS Sailing Store and Kingfisher Yacht Ropes. The partners made the RS Games 2022 unforgettable by adding their own brand’s passion for the sport and the people in it. Special thanks to our Class Association sponsors; Fernhurst Books, Noble Marine, Allen, Hyde Sails, Spinlock and 18 Words.
Sustainability was an important factor in the organisation of the event. To be held accountable, the RS Games 2022 was registered for Clean Regatta status by Sailors for the Sea which is the world’s leading sustainability certification for water-based events. MarkSetBots were used for the RS Feva and RS Tera World Championships. They reduce the fossil fuel-burning power boats needed to set a race course, eliminates seabed-destructive anchors and drastically decreases the number of people involved with regatta management. RS Electric Boats were used during the event as part of the safety fleet. The Pulse 63 is the world’s first electric RIB, with a fully integrated electric drive, zero emissions propulsion, minimal wake and almost silent operation. Finally, WPNSA have a commitment to caring for the environment and striving to play their part in making our industry more sustainable. The Academy was the first sailing venue in the world to achieve the Sustainable Event Certification ISO 20121. Their best practices and proactive messaging were seen across the site and throughout the event.
The RS Games was a true celebration of global corinthian racing. RS attracts sailors across the spectrum, from a junior sailor’s first regatta to the highest standards of amateur sportsmanship. With 713 boats and 1037 competitors, it makes the RS Games 2022 the largest dinghy regatta of the year from a single manufacturer.
Video Credit: Digital Sailing