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Sail for Gold roadshow hits the waters

PUBLISHED: 14:15 05 August 2016

Ben Saxton, Giles Scott, Peter Saxton and Nicola Groves at the launch of the Sail for Gold Roadshow in Weymouth (pic: RYA)

Ben Saxton, Giles Scott, Peter Saxton and Nicola Groves at the launch of the Sail for Gold Roadshow in Weymouth (pic: RYA)

©Jes˙s Renedo / Sailing Energy

Royal Yachting Association to visit venues across the UK

To celebrate the 2016 Olympic Games the Royal Yachting Association will be hitting the road during the Games sailing medal race week with their RYA Sail for Gold Roadshow.

Launched in June at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy (WPNSA) by members of the British Sailing Team, the Roadshow will visit venues across the UK which have a special connection to our Olympic medal contenders, landing at Grafham Water Sailing Club on August 16.

At the event visitors can discover what it’s like to go sailing or windsurfing with free taster sessions, or watch the drama unfold in Rio with medal races shown on big screens and cheer on local sailing heroes.

It doesn’t matter if you’ve never stepped in a boat or on a windsurfer before, visitors can get afloat and sample the freedom and exhilaration of a fantastic outdoor sport at the friendly club.

The sessions will be led by qualified instructors supported by club members who will be on hand to take you afloat.

The club will provide all of the equipment and information you need and give you a superb introduction to sailing and windsurfing. Buoyancy aids will be provided, but visitors should bring their own soft shoes and a change of clothes.

Alongside the taster sessions, all visitors and club members will have the opportunity to meet members of the British Sailing Team, with inside knowledge on all the action in Rio as well as advice on how you can get into sailing and maybe start your own Olympic journey.

Some of these team members will give a masterclass from 12-4pm with tips and techniques for sailing catamarans and Finn dinghies.

If you sail a cat or a Finn, you’re welcome to bring your boat along (no charge), but let organisers know in advance if you’re coming along, by emailing peter@saxtons.me.

Visitors can enjoy refreshments and learn more about the sport before watching the Finn and Nacra 17 medal races on the big screen sin the top floor of the clubhouse from 5pm.

With Ben Saxton (current club member) competing in the Nacra 17 Class and Giles Scott (past club member) competing in the Finn Class there will hopefully be a chance to see the local heroes go for gold.

Both spent their formative sailing years at the club, with Saxton competing there last month in the Anglian Water Grafham Water 50th celebrations and staying to show the way around from the front of a Flying Fifteen in the Wednesday evening racing.

“The Roadshow is a fantastic way to bring all the excitement of the Games into our home clubs and it will mean so much when we’re out in Rio to know everyone will be at home supporting us,” said Olympic silver medalist Saskia Clark.

“It will also be great to see the Games inspiring people to get on the water and have a go for themselves.”

RYA Sport Development Manager Duncan Truswell added: “We’re delighted to be able to support our athletes as they go for gold in Rio.

“Each of these events will be a fantastic opportunity for locals to come down and get afloat during what will be a fantastic summer of sailing and find out why sailing can be so much fun at all levels.

“We’d like to thank each of the sailing venues that have played significant roles during the sailors’ journeys and have helped make these events possible. We hope to see everybody turn out to cheer our sailors home.”

For more information visit rya.org.uk/get-afloat/sailforgold-roadshow or grafham.org/the-club.html.

For more about the RYA’s summer of sailing and how you can get out on the water visit rya.org.uk/go/trysailing.

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