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Junior Sailing Report Friday 3rd March 2017

posted Mar 12, 2017, 1:54 PM by Admin hycnz
The Hobsonville Yacht Club was a hive of activity all day on Friday with Helensville School arriving in the morning for a Have a Go Day run by Yachting New Zealand, using our club facilities to run the event. Many thanks to Dave Meeks, Greg Jones, Gary Matthews and John Hansen for helping make the visitors day as pleasant and seamless as possible.

From 4.30pm the Junior Sailors started arriving, and by 5.15 we had 15 youngsters and nearly every available dinghy ready to go sailing. At the briefing the children were reminded of the importance to wear shoes whilst launching and recovering the dinghies, due to the sharp oyster shells and other rubbish left down by the boat ramp. Launching took some time, with Sean Munro doing an extra check on the rigging before the boats got on the water. This week there were no fishermen to compete with the slipway, making it much easier to launch, despite low water.

Two extra marks were laid, making a triangular course, with a short upwind leg, close to the clubhouse, giving constant entertainment to those on shore. Harrison and Kieran upgraded to the Firebug and Starling and enjoyed the superior speed and boat handling of the bigger and faster single handlers. Well done to both for staying upright, despite the occasional gust catching them unawares. It is amazing how quickly they both adjusted to the increased power and speed, and the demands made on their awareness to feel what was going on.

Nixon and Isaac went out in the newly acquired Opti, “Rascal”, with Dennis Craig to accompany the two highly confident lads. They went flying around the course, as well as up and down the estuary, and managed to avoid all the other dinghies. Simon, Caleb and Shaun’s Dad, took out the Sunburst, and they proceeded to sail around the course with ease and competence. This freed up Nick to go on a Safety Boat and help Sean with the coaching. It was very impressive to see all the youngsters, spread out in ten different dinghies, 7 Optis, a Sunburst, Starling and Firebug, sailing a small triangular course, in a competent and seamanlike way. Well done to everyone! Sailor of the day went to Ollie, who coped well in more testing conditions on his third ever sail. It is getting harder to choose the top sailor each week, and we are planning to design a certificate to award each week.

Getting off the water went smoothly, and Justine, Kathleen and Erica did a grand job organising the pizzas for afterwards. A wonderful evening and probably one of the best Junior Sailing evenings so far. Thanks to all the support crew of Gary Matthews, Denise Ellis and Rob, who all give very generously of their time.

Gill Moore
Dinghy sailing Coordinator