Two Bolton boats took part in the GP14 Youth Nationals at Nantwich and Borders this weekend. Alex Collins and Peter Mackin had spent the week at the GP14 youth training event at Crosby (which I’m sure they’d be delightted to tell you about) and were raring to go to the extent that they were all seen doing a warm up run before the races on Saturday and Sunday. They needed to as it was a cold morning. James Shevelan-Hobbs and Lewis Shevelan also attended though they weren’t quite up for the morning run.

Sixteen boats took part and the racing was excellent. A nice fresh breeze and a course set to make the most of good spinnaker work, made for close racing. Alex and Peter did well finnishing mid fleet obviously benefitting from their weeks training. James and Lewis struggled a bit with the breeze, needing another 10 stone between them to bring them up to optimum weight, but still weren’t last. The winning GP was helmed by Sam Watson and crewed by Andy Hunter, who are both members of the Nantwich and Border Counties Sailing Club, after winning the last three races.

I’ve been to four GP14 Youths now and they are always a pleasure to watch. The GP14 Youths is being held at Bolton next year and would be good to see a good turn out. A number of the boats at the Youths had been kindly lent by other sailors including one brand new boat.  With the 24 hour race being a topic for discussion recently maybe members would consider lending their boats at the event and maybe we can develop our own team in the same way South Staffs have (, fielding seven boats at the Youths.

Despite the close racing there were no serious collisions. One ambulance was needed for a dislocated knee though. Legs really aren’t supposed to bend like that.

John Shevelan