Irish Sailing’s Team Racing Programme is well underway with interest building across the country at clubs and centres each looking for bespoke training for instructors and sailors of all ages and abilities writes Gail McAllister
Team Racing is a fun and inexpensive way for clubs to retain young dinghy sailors after they have left the structured environs of class youth racing or the Irish Sailing Training Schemes. With a focus on rules knowledge, boat handling, tactics and teambuilding, the programme will further develop transferable skills and give rise to skilled and competitive racing in a very sociable environment.
The BIM FLAG funded initiative (Bord Iascaigh Mhara Fisheries Local Area Group Development), organised by Irish Sailing’s Team Racing Contractor and delivered by experienced Club Race Coaches is gaining traction following the successful delivery of Irish Sailing’s mid-term team racing clinics and demand is increasing.
Clubs getting involved
Last Wednesday, 22 sailors, ranging in ages from 11 to 16 turned out at Royal Irish Yacht Club for their first junior team racing clinic in RS Fevas. Unfortunately, on-water coaching was abandoned due to high winds, but team racing coach Greg Arrowsmith delivered a great interactive shore-based workshop introducing the team racing format, rules and tactics with the aid of video and games to keep the sailors interested and engaged. The RIYC offer a great setup for young people new to team racing or want to improve their sailing and are aiming to deliver further team racing clinics and a regular programme.
The Royal St George Yacht Club enjoyed an intensive two-day clinic with a group of improvers. As the wind abated, the group were able to get afloat on both days applying tactics and team racing manoeuvres. There was great sailor engagement and a huge improvement throughout the two days
Cork Boat Club in Blackrock are a fledgeling club with a fleet of Fireflys who race on the River Lee. Team Racing Coach Noah McCarthy visited last Sunday to provide a seminar on rules and tactics
Malahide Yacht Club has booked a clinic for mid November using their fleet of Topaz and Feva dinghies with club instructors shadowing Irish Sailing team racing coaches Aaron Jones and Noah McCarthy as part of their continuous professional development.
This weekend sees the first Local Umpires Course which is now fully booked with 14 participants. The course will be delivered by International Umpires Cxema Pico and Chris Lindsay and participants will have a great opportunity to practice their newly learnt skills on the Trinity Alumni event at Royal St George Yacht Club. A further local umpires course is planned for early 2020.
Rolling out around the country
Irish Sailing have also received interest from clubs including Spiddal, Glandore, Baltimore, Waterford, Rush, Wicklow, Sligo, Galway Bay, Dublin Bay, Sutton, Malahide, Killaloe and Carlingford. With a new fleet of Fireflys due to arrive by the end of November the Irish Sailing Roadshow will be rolled out further over coming months.
Clubs and training centres wishing to be part of the programme can avail of free team racing coaching in existing club boats. In the absence of existing matched club boats, the team racing contractor and coaches can visit your club with a fleet of Fireflys for a small charge to cover transport, damage deposit and expenses. The fleet are to be delivered later this month.
To register your club’s interest in the roadshow, please contact Rory Martin for more information [email protected]