Well, what a fantastic weekend we had at Blithfield! The winds weren’t quite as strong as the winds that we endured at South Staffs but the conditions were still challenging. Also we had 2 new squad members, Amy and Hettie Stevens. Amy and Hettie had already been through the Zone Squad but they just missed out on getting into the National Squad this year. With Adam on the other side of the world in Australia, Beth Grey joined us in his place. She was a great help sharing her knowledge of crewing mirrors. This tied in with the aim of the weekend, improving our spinnaker work.
|The first National Junior Squad Weekend brought eighteen eager sailors, and nine fully rigged boats; and of course 60-knot gusts of wind to Portland Bay. With a dismal looking forecast, the hopes for sailing were optimistically high but unfortunately short-lived. On Saturday morning, parents and sailors alike were in a hurry to rig boats, Peter launched his rib, and some sailors even started getting changed. It was around 10 o’clock then, when Peter and Matt McGovern slowly began to realise that if the sails were to go up, Mirrors would soon be flying everywhere. Before too many boats flew off their trailers, we all put our Mirrors in the huge red hangar in the WPNSA and Peter and Matt wildly began to plan an indoor-based Saturday. Although it was a big shame not to get on the water, we were all able to get to know each other a bit better and the coaches were able to explain the up and coming winter training. With the help of brief breaks every so often, I think it’s fair to say we had a productive day, and it’s also fair to say that Helena had a nice enough birthday in the process! We finished the day’s training off with a short burst of fitness.
Well what a wonderful weekend we had at the lovely South Staffordshire sailing club. With winds blowing up to 35knots on Saturday the North Zone Squad had a wet day, however everyone coped with the conditions exceptionally. We only managed an hour of sailing before the winds proved too challenging for some and the fleet was blown ashore.
However on the Sunday the wind was ideal. After a breakfast consisting of beans on toast and porridge it was a perfect training day! We spent a full day on the water practicing what we learnt in theory the day before.
On the Saturday evening all families came together at a local pub and tucked into a huge carvery. This gave us kids, as well as the adults, a chance to socialize and get to know each other more.
On Thursday 29th October 16 Mirror dinghies came to Yorkshire Dales Sailing club. A range of people attended from national junior squad members to recent Mirror converts who had just started sailing. They all had in common a desire - to have fun!
Yorkshire Dales SC was the perfect venue with its brand new clubhouse, a stark contrast to the portacabins which were the changing rooms for the last 15 years.
Once everyone had rigged their boats and eaten a few too many bacon butties for the current wind conditions, we all piled into the new training room, which was fitted with impressively bright orange chairs! Our head coach for this couple of days was Dave Woodhead who coached the national zone squad last year and will be coaching the northern zone squad in 2010. Beth Gray who has had many successes in the Mirror with her brother Ed was assistant coach. They recently won the Inland Championships at Windermere.
34 Mirrors gathered on the south coast in great sunshine at Itchenor on the 5th & 6th September for the Southern Championships which also incorporated the 2009 Youth and Junior championships and a Southern Traveller event. It was the first championships since the successful Nationals and Worlds in Pwllheli earlier in the summer and a number of regular competitors were missing having moved on to other classes. However, there was a good turn out of local boats bringing new faces to the fleet a couple of boats from Cornwall and l from the North travelled from Windermere.The race officer set 7 great courses throughout the weekend which tested local knowledge and sailing skills.
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