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On the 19th-20th of October hundreds of young sailors gathered at Oxford SC for the Eric Twiname youth and team racing championships. There were two mirror teams entered, one youth, Tom Dean, Maddie Wylie, Becca Stephens, Lauren Stephens, Chloe Macaulay and Izzy Leroux(fireflies) and one junior team, Ellie Benn, George Richards, Emma Clayton, Faye Caswell, Alistair Scott and Alexander Baird. (Fevas)

With very little previous experience of team racing the juniors got off to a shaky start on the first day, losing the first 7 races. They gradually improved to win what they thought were the next three, only to discover that the last win was discounted even though they were 1,2,3 over the finish line because one boat was OSC at the start! The youth team did brilliantly winning 7 out of 10 races, landing themselves in gold b fleet.

The Saturday night curry definitely had an effect on the junior’s results on day 2, as they won all 6 of their silver b races, making it in to the silver fleet semi finals. Luckily they got all their races in early before a sudden lull on the squally weather left boats becalmed and racing had to stop for 30 minutes. The wind and rain came back with a vengeance for the semi finals and the juniors lost their first race (Emma and Faye capsized losing their 1st place position) and as they were racing in the second (out of 3 races), the whole event was abandoned, due to a freak squall. The youths did not have such a good day, having extremely tough and aggressive competition (poor little polite mirror sailors!) only winning two of their 6 races.

Big well done to all who took part, we had really tough competition from some of the best team racers in the country. We learnt lots about boat on boat tactics and working as a team. It was an exciting, busy and different type of racing. Thank you to the parents for taking us etc, it was a very long drive down!!

By Faye Caswell

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