Manx Youth Sailing Squad sailors Ffinlo Wright and Matthew Petts put in a superb performance at the Independant Association of Preparatory Schools (IAPS) annual sailing regatta, which was held in Weymouth on Thursday last week. This prestigious nationwide schools regatta saw entries from over 40 schools around the UK. The boys represented the Buchan School in the age 11 and under class.
Racing in two-up in Picos with a jib there were 30 boats in the 11 and under class. Conditions were near perfect with sunshine, blue skies and wind which built steadily throughout the day. Four races were sailed in Portland Harbour, giving all the youngsters an exciting opportunity to sail at the 2012 Olympic sailing venue.
Ffinlo and Matt started the regatta as they would continue, scoring two firsts in the morning races. They were leading overall during lunchtime when the fleet was split into Gold and Silver fleets for the afternoon’s racing. There was some good racing throughout the day, Ffinlo and Matt had some good starts and led the fleet by up to five boat lengths in some of their races! Once again the boys won both the afternoon races, making them the clear overall winners.
Ffinlo and Matt are the only team to have ever won every single race outright at the IAPS Regatta, an acheivement they are very proud of, which has been made possible through training at the IOMYC and 7th Wave RYA Training Centre in Port Erin.
Final presentations included surpise appearances from some of Skandia Team GBR sailors. The mens 49er crew of Chris Draper and Peter Greenhalgh and the womens 470 crew of Hannah Mills and Saskia Clarke presented medals and trophies to the winners in the Under 11 fleet, Ben Ainsle presented the prizes in the Under 13 fleet. The Skandia Team GBR sailors had all taken time out from their ‘Sail for Gold’ training programmes to present the prizes, sign autographs and chat to the youngsters, which made for an inspiring finale to the IAPS regatta.