Manx Youth Sailing Squad win Inland Team Championship Trophy

The Manx Youth Sailing Squad have just returned home from the RS Tera Inland Championship with the overall Team Trophy, to complete a very successful year of sailing. In the past 12 months the Manx Youth Sailing Squad have been crowned National Team Champions and Inland Team Champions, James Kelly became the RS Tera World Champion and Hannah Howitt is the RS Tera Women’s World Champion. Five Manx sailors have also been selected to join the GBR RS Tera Squad for 2011.

A team of eight Manx sailors attended the Inland Championship at Rutland Water this weekend, with a new fleet of boats sponsored by Royal Skandia Ltd, AM Ltd and the Manx Lottery Trust. The four more senior sailors competed in the twenty strong RS Tera Pro fleet and the four junior sailors sailed in the RS Tera Sport fleet consisting of 30 boats.

Saturday was a very breezy day which the Manx girls in the Pro fleet enjoyed, each scoring at least one result in the top five during the three races, Amie Shute put in her best performance yet with a fourth in Race 1. World Champion James Kelly suffered a broken mast in Race 1, a broken rudder in Race 2 and as a result was unable to compete in Race 3, putting him out of contention for a prize during the weekend.

In the Sport fleet Greg Kelly and Ffinlo Wright sailed well in the wind with Greg finishing consistently in fifth place and Ffinlo achieiving top ten results for the first time in his sailing career. Matthew Petts and Ben Batchelor the newest and smallest squad members stuggled with Saturday’s windy conditions.

A further three races were sailed in more moderate breeze on Sunday. Izzy Sharpe sailed consistently in the Pro fleet with a third and two fifths finishing in 3rd place overall. James Kelly found his form again and ended the series with a win in the final race.

In the Sport fleet Greg Kelly again sailed in fifth place consistently until the final race which he also won, meaning the Manx team ended the series with a bullet each for the Kelly brothers in the last race of the day. Ffinlo kept his concentration throughout the final day and finished 10th overall. Matthew and Ben completed all Sunday’s races and Ben even finished 8th in race 5, a great result for the nine year old at his first national competition.

The Inland Team Champions Trophy is awarded to the Club with the highest placed three finishers. Izzy Sharpe 3rd in the Pro fleet, Greg Kelly 5th in the Sport fleet and Hannah Howitt 6th in the Pro fleet won the award for the Manx Youth Sailing Squad sailing under the Isle of Man Yacht Club flag. Izzy, Hannah, Amie, Greg and Ffinlo were selected to join the GBR Squad for 2011 and will compete at the World Championship in Denmark in the summer. James will be moving in to the Laser Radial class.

Pro Fleet Overall Results:
Izzy Sharpe (age 14) 3rd
Hannah Howitt (age 15) 6th
Amie Shute (age 13) 12th
James Kelly (age 13) 14th

Sport Fleet Overall Results:
Greg Kelly (age 12) 5th
Ffinlo Wright (age 10) 10th
Ben Batchelor (age 9) 19th
Matthew Petts (age 10) 23rd

From oct 2010