Back Racing and Training
Easter Weekend saw the long-awaited return to sailing for the Scaramouche Sailing Trust from Greig City Academy. With overnight stays still not permitted there were several logistical hurdles to overcome, and two day trips from London were made on the 2nd and 4th of April.
Taking the first opportunity to get out there was the Etchells Youth Academy which Jamal, Agid, Jahvarn and Brandom are taking part in, having missed out on the academy last season, they were keen to get on the water. At the same time, we had last season’s highly successful junior crew onboard the mini tonner Riot. This crew consisted of Kai (helm), Jaydon (Skipper), Christopher-Joel (cockpit), Kacey (navigator) and Jessye (Bow).
All the young sailors had to get up at 3am, travel to school to get onto a coach at 4am heading for Southampton. After catching the 6:55am Redjet we all arrived in a very cold Cowes to prepare. The lads thought they had plenty of time but having not seen the boats for four months it was a rush to sort and check all the systems.
The Etchells crew had a great day being coached by Martin Evans, picking up where they left off. They were joined by another six Etchells Youth Academy boats and enjoyed the usual very high standard of coaching and competition.
Meanwhile the Riot crew set off in the JOG Lonely Tower Race in challenging conditions. With wind against tide it was a rough start but the crew quickly got back into the swing of things and were in a solid position by the time they reached Nab Tower. The return leg saw a difficult decision whether to play it safe with their asymmetric spinnaker or sail an angle with their big symmetrical spinnaker. Jaydon elected to play it safe, and they finished mid-fleet. This was pleasing for their first race back and importantly there were no gear failures or big mistakes.
After finishing the two teams got their coach back to London for a day of rest on Saturday. On Sunday they travelled back to do the same again but this time the JOG race was the Great Escape on a course around the Eastern Solent. With hardly any wind it was a drift towards the East but as the wind filled in, Riot was keeping up with boats rated much higher. They maintained their position and would have finished 3rd, had they not mistaken the startline for the same one as Friday. A tough lesson but one they will not repeat!
The Scaramouche Sailing Trust has numerous events coming up and preparation for Cowes Week as the official charity are coming together. We will shortly have our 420 and Lasers back out at Lymington and we then have the Warsash Spring series over two weekends, the Etchells Bedrock Trophy and then the JOG Owers race.
We are very hopeful that our season will really get going then. Scaramouche is back in the water soon and will be taking larger groups of the beginners who have missed out so much through lockdown. We will then be focusing on preparing Scaramouche for the Fastnet if we think it is feasible this summer. Our girls team now have their own smaller boat to race, a Bolero 26 which is being prepared for them in Cowes.
Lastly our former sailors are campaigning the Eboat this summer, although they have a lot of other racing on we hope they will find the time to put together a solid season on this very successful boat.