Over the last weekend of July, 28 sailors and coaches from around NZ came together for the second of three national teams clinics scheduled this winter. This group would normally make up the teams that travel to compete in various overseas regattas and this was an opportunity to bring together the best up-and-coming opti sailors for a weekend to have fun, develop friendships, and learn new skills.
With these goals in mind, the coaches decided to focus on team racing. Team racing is a terrific discipline in our sport that requires excellent boat handling, speed, starting, awareness, and the ability to communicate with your teammates and the opposition. The sailors did a day of drills building these skills before Reuben Corbett, training manager of the RNZYS Youth Training Programme and past medallist at the Open Team Racing World Championships, talked to the group about his pathway through the sport and some of the fundamental strategies of 3v3 racing. Thanks to Reuben for giving up his time and sharing his experience, the sailors learnt a lot from the interactive whiteboard session.
On Saturday all the sailors were split into teams of mixed ability and completed a round robin series. There was not much wind around the Auckland area but the short course format meant the course could be set close to shore in a localised breeze. There was great racing on display as well as a lot of teamwork and the passing of knowledge between the older sailors and those that were new to teams racing.
Stronger breeze turned up on Sunday morning and the focus changed back to fleet racing. It was an enjoyable weekend, especially in the middle of winter in COVID times, and we look forward to coming back together in September where the development teams sailors will rejoin for the final teams clinic at MBSC, alongside the final weekend of the junior winter sprint series.
Thanks to the parent helpers, a fantastic group of coaches, and the three yacht clubs that lent ribs: Royal Akarana Yacht Club (who hosted the weekend); Kohimarama Sailing Club; and Murrays Bay Sailing Club.
NZIODA Head Coach
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- NZIODA Optimist Clinics 2021/2022 Season
- Picton, 19th to 21st December 2021 open to all fleets
- Auckland, 11th to 14th January 2022 open to all fleets
- NZIODA Ranking Regattas 2021/2022 Season
- Interislander Regatta, Picton 18th to 20th February 2022
- Optimist & Starling National Championships 16th to 19th April 2022