Sail-a-bration! : BBYC Learn to Sail prize giving

Bucklands Beach Yacht Club held their junior prize giving on Saturday, July 25.

It was a great event attended by around 120 young sailors and their families.40 children received their Learn to Sail Certificates and for some, Centreboard division Regatta Cups.

The guest speakers Dave Helg (Rear Commodore of Centreboard), Nic Drummond (centreboard sailor) and Ian Darby (RSO from YNZ) all contributed to a successful event.

Angus Adamson, coach for BBYC, said it “It was great to see an increase in the diversity of the sailors coming through our  Have a Go and  Learn to Sail programmes, forming connections with local communities is very important to the club and it really shows that sailing is for everyone to enjoy.”

“The 2019-2020 Season started well with one highlight being the successfully run BBYC leg of the RS Feva Traveller series in mid-March, this was a first for BBYC and we aim to continue this regatta annually,” Helg said.

Chelsea Wang, Alex Zhao & Alistair Liew with BBYC New Commodore Sara Poore. Photo supplied

“It was the first time we have run a centreboard regatta out of the old Grangers Point Clubhouse for many years and it really showed the potential for further utilisation of this facility in future.

“The impact of Covid-19 was challenging but we have emerged from this with a positive outlook to further build the centreboard fleet, particularly after our first bilingual promotional event that boosted the number of attendees at Learn To Sail classes over the summer.”

Sailing academy supervisor Sarah Jane Fairley said the club had over 1200 participants from the local area joining in the afore-mentioned programmes plus sailors from college and youth programmes, to adult Learn to Sail.

“We had a great season despite Covid. We had 70 Junior sailors participate in our Junior Level 1-3 courses, with 25 per cent managing to complete Level 3 and will be moving into the BBYC Centreboard next season,” Fairley said.

Senior sailing coach (and 2000 Olympian- 470 class) Melinda Henshaw, also heralded the season a success. “Over the course of the season, we have had many great ‘learn to sail’ moments.  What makes it the most fun is the variety of abilities that come to us. Some have little or no water confidence and some are children of Olympic sailing champions! We aim to give every child better water confidence and learning through fun games and activities.  We also hope to give them the magical feeling that comes with being able to command and sail your own boat.  The sheltered sailing area at Bucklands Beach is perfect for giving kids a great start at sailing.  Come and join us!”