Saturday 11 September saw Horning Sailing Club’s Junior Regatta, OnBoard Festival and Bart’s Bash event take place in ideal conditions, with a warm and gentle breeze, the perfect culmination to a busy season’s training. After a break last year due to the Covid-19 pandemic, young sailors were eager to get back on the water, and have been training since June. Some thirty sailors from beginners through to more advanced racers took to the water, participating in four races on the River Bure outside the Clubhouse. First away were the more experienced racers, sailing in Toppers, Lasers and Splashes, starting in very light winds, which thankfully picked up during the course of the day. Second start were those newer to racing, sailing Toppers, an RS Tera and a Splash, before finally the beginners, sailing Optimists and Teras.

With some nervous of racing at the start of the day, these fears quickly disappeared and the fun element took over, with every sailor completing every race! Racing was extremely close amongst the fleets, but the emphasis was very much on taking part rather than winning. At the conclusion of the Regatta’s racing, young sailors enjoyed a BBQ, and trophies were presented. The Regatta’s Endeavour Award went to 10-year-old Louis Strowger, who despite being one of the smallest sailors, completed every race in his Optimist, improving each time.  

The Group 3 winner was Abbey Penny sailing her Topper, followed by sisters Zia and Anya Gittins in second and third, also sailing Toppers. In Group 2 first was Jasmine Herring, with Eleanor Holmes second (both sailing Toppers), third was Lewis Green in his Splash. In Group 1, first was Ralph Myhill, who had earlier that day switched to sail an RS Tera for the first time, second was Tilly Coston sailing an Optimist, and third was Edward Street also sailing an RS Tera. Anya Gittins, aged 12, sailed a Topper, and said “It was incredibly fun and it gave the opportunity to put into practice what we learnt in training”, whilst Julian Mander, also aged 12 and sailing a Topper said “I really enjoyed the atmosphere and the races because everyone got into them, it was really fun”. Meanwhile Harrison Ryder, aged 14 and sailing a Splash, said: “It was great fun and I had a ball of a time”. The full results can be found here.

After the Regatta was the Club’s annual Bart’s Bash race, with many choosing to stay on and take part, as well as being joined by further members. With a keelboat, allcomers dinghy, and optimist/tera fleet, 19 boats took part with, in the true spirit of the event, everyone getting involved. The Keelboat race was won by Adrian Tooke sailing Yeoman Damselfly, with Kim West second in Rebel Queen, and Lorraine Street third in her Yeoman. The 13-strong main dinghy fleet was won by Jasper Richardson in his Topper, with Zia Gittins second, also sailing a Topper. Third was Tallulah Reardon-Burr in her Splash. In the Optimists/Teras, first was Edward Street, second Grace Russell (both sailing Teras) and third Emma Gibbs and Oliver Childerhouse pairing up in an Optimist!

Meanwhile, on Sunday members enjoyed a Down River race. Starting in an extremely light breeze, there were initially some concerns as to whether sailors would make it to the proposed destination of Thurne. However, thankfully, after a busy start at Woods Dyke in Horning, the wind picked up to provide a pleasant sail for the mixed fleet of five cruisers, eight keelboats and a dinghy. First to Thurne was Peter Goshawk’s Cruiser Grayling in just under an hour and a half, who would go on to win both legs. First keelboat to arrive was Kevin Edwards in Rebel Maid, although Clive Gardner’s Yare & Bure Hairstreak was first on handicap. The return leg was won by Geoff Stubbs sailing Yeoman Tara.