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Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships Cancelled

3rd July 2020
Sailing at a previous Eric Twiname regatta Sailing at a previous Eric Twiname regatta

The 2020 Eric Twiname Youth & Junior Team Racing Championships, which had been rescheduled for this October, have now been cancelled.

Organisers the RYA and Eric Twiname Trust took the “difficult decision” to call off the event in agreement that it could not be delivered safely in light of current coronavirus restrictions.

The regatta was due to take place on 10-11 October at Farmoor Reservoir in Oxfordshire.

Unlike conventional fleet racing regattas, the Eric Twiname sees groups of young sailors sharing RS Feva and Firefly dinghies, carrying out on-water changeovers using support RIBs and often being in close proximity to one another ashore.

It also requires a high number of support staff and volunteers, as well as attracting a large amount of spectators to the site.

These factors led to the decision to cancel the 2020 event and instead focus on 2021.

However, the RYA says it has reaffirmed its intention to run the Regional Junior Championships on 26-27 September and the revised Youth National Championships from 24-27 October.

Chris Atherton, RYA national performance manager, said: “Although we obviously make this decision to cancel the Eric Twiname Team Racing Championships with a heavy heart, we believe it is the correct decision to protect everyone’s safety.

“The number of people involved and the logistics to achieve racing just wouldn’t allow it.

“Our great thanks go to Oxford Sailing Club who have been wonderful supporters of this event, helping to make it the success it is today. They have been very understanding in the current circumstances and we look forward to the event returning to Farmoor in the future.”

Bruce Aitken, secretary at The Eric Twiname Trust, added: “The general consensus among trustees is that, unlike ‘conventional’ racing, team racing poses far more challenges in the context of safeguarding competitors and organisers from the risks associated with Covid-19.

“We all want to encourage youth and junior sailing and racing safely is a big part of that, but we feel in these extraordinary times it would be better to cancel this event and return next year in a true reflection of what this event is and should be.”

Last year’s event took place at Rutland Water Sailing Club in England’s East Midlands, where Northern Ireland sailors enjoyed a strong showing.

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