With the season now well underway, I’m not too sure where the last few months went! What was expected to be a bit of “down time” over winter, was spent working hard to formulate a plan that would get as many sailors as possible out on the water and enjoying the sport this summer.
We have started the season with 140 sailors across all courses, and these are run over seven days a week. We also have local primary schools bringing their year five and six classes for a day of water sports fun sailing in a Hobie Wave, doing capsize drills in an O’pen Bic and taking part in a Marine Debris challenge. There will be over 400 students participating in this before Christmas, with more schools lined up to bring their students in early 2019.
But to fill in the gap between our Mid Winter Champs back in July and today, we have been busy with plenty of other activities for the sailors both on and off the water.
Gulf Harbour Yacht Club was kind enough to offer ten places to our Youth sailors for a totally new experience of racing keelboats. This was thoroughly enjoyed by all sailors, and will hopefully be something that happens more often. Widening their experience on the water to find their passion is something that’s important to us.
In September, sailors from the RCSF were invited to spend a day out at Ardmore with the Auckland Blokart Club. Yet again, this was a fantastic day of rivalry between kids and parents, and the most fun most sailors think you could have on land!
September also saw us host Volvo Ocean Race sailor Bianca Cook who spent a Friday evening with our sailors and other Manly locals doing a beach clean up and talking about her time on the boat Turn the Tide on Plastic. This was another great opportunity for our sailors to be educated in the importance of keeping our coastlines clean and also to be inspired by Bianca’s story about how she has worked towards her goals.
The October school holidays arrived swiftly, and with them, came Sailing Taster Days for children who wanted to give it a go and three day programmes for our current Laser and Double Handed sailors. We also hosted an O’pen Bic Sailing camp for those sailors that are aiming to compete at the World Championships in Manly just after Christmas. We had about 40 sailors in total for that, with at least half of them coming from other parts of the country. Lots of fun was had both on and off the water. To finish off the school holidays, Manly Sailing Club hosted the Hibiscus Coast Youth Regatta, which saw a great turnout of our sailors and another great day of sailing.
Now we are down to the serious business of preparing about 20 of our sailors to compete in the O’pen Bic Worlds, and following that, we have some Laser sailors who will be competing at the Laser Nationals, also being held in Manly in mid January. The RS Feva Nationals being held locally will then be the focus for our double handed sailors.
We are so privileged to have a great team of coaches, great sponsors, and a great number of families who are all committed to supporting the RCSF to be able to provide these opportunities for our sailors.
If you have any questions or would like to come along and see us in action, please get in touch!
To help keep our sailors engaged and entertained through the colder and darker months we introduced a new winter activity; the Mac n' Cheese Movie night!
This debuted with a Learn to Sail group night early in August and it was a huge success. Crowd favourite Happy Feet was screened, selected because of its powerful message on protecting the marine environment. The sailors left with some good take home lessons on the harsh truths surrounding our involvement in ocean pollution, and in particular how plastic debris affect marine life.
Later in the month, we invited the older groups to our second Mac n' Cheese movie night, with a slightly different flavour. Still relating to the sea, we screened Maidentrip. The incredible true story of Laura Dekker who at the age of 14 embarked on a remarkable two year voyage around the globe with the aim of being the youngest sailor to ever circumnavigate the planet alone. This was a feel good movie that really connected with our sailors and certainly inspired them to think bigger!
Thanks to all the parent support and volunteer kitchen hands keeping the Mac n' Cheese and popcorn coming all night - we will definitely be continuing with this winter activity in years to come!
Manly Sailing Club website has a very useful page that lets you buy, sell and trade sailing related items. These items can be in new or used condition. This page is perfect for sailing gear that a sailor has grown out of, boat parts/tools or even second hand sailing boats. The link to the Manly Sailing club page is below, scroll down to the 'LIST AN ITEM' button and follow the steps to sell an item. Make sure you have a photo of the item so others can see what condition it is in.
Click on the button below to be taken to the Manly Sailing Club page
Below are some fantastic reviews from our sailors Maddie from level 3 and Matthew from level 4. Both sailors participated in the school holiday program up at Manly in April. Read on to find out what Maddie and Matthew learnt during the program and how much they enjoyed it!
It was an extremely fun holiday sailing camp. Everyone enjoyed themselves. We all had a go in a variety of different boats; such as the Hobie Wave, RS Feva, Laser 4.7 and the O’pen Bic. It was a fantastic three-day programme.
On Wednesday, the first day, it was blowing around 20 knots, gusting over 25. Everyone capsized but we all enjoyed it. On Thursday, the wind wasn’t as strong as Wednesday. First we did short races, to get everyone together and ready. We then did a destination sail, around to Stanmore Bay then back to Manly. On Friday, we started with some racing, we then did some follow-the-leader. It got really windy when we got out of the bay, some of us had a hard time staying upright, however it was great for our learning.
I really enjoyed this holiday camp, and I know I wasn’t the only one. It was a great learning experience for everyone.
In the first week of the holidays we had our sailing camp. We had sailing sessions every day and 3 gym sessions over the week and some speeches on rules, weather and science of sailing as well. I was sailing the Laser Radial with seven others during the week and the rest of the level 4s were sailing Bics, on the first day we went for an hour sail in the morning then derigged our boats and hopped into a shuttle bus.
We arrived at the Navy base and we went for a mud run. The mud run wasn’t your usual mud run, we had to jog for 1 or 2 kilometres in wetsuits and booties then we had to go across this estuary that the ground was entirely made of super, sticky mud. The mud went up to and past our waists in some places and it sucked at our legs and boots. All while the Navy men were telling us to get a move on and never sit down. By close to the end some of us were literally pulling some team mates along. Once we were out of the mud we were all exhausted. But that wasn’t it, after a quick break and some water we had to run back to the Navy base. The best bit about it was jumping off the wharf close to a Navy boat. We all agreed that it would have been one of the hardest things that we have done in our life.
The next three days consisted of a gym session, then sailing session, lunch then another session on the water. Us laser sailors had Mike Bullot who won Laser Radial Open Worlds and Youth Worlds in 2001 and competed at the Laser Worlds 5 times and his best placings were 14th and 17th. We also had Hamish Pepper who has competed at the Olympics four times! Twice in Laser where he got 10th and 7th and twice more in the Star. We really enjoyed having them coaching us and we all improved heaps and gained lots of knowledge from them. On Friday we had racing and competed in 6 or 7 races. We did shorter races in the morning and then we did longer races in the afternoon.
The week was great fun, hard work and we all learned and improved heaps though and wouldn’t have been nearly as good without the awesome food that was cooked by the ladies in the kitchen. We had burgers, hot dogs, macaroni and cheese, soup, Hot milo, fruit, baking and more.