Draycote Sailing Club teenagers race and host Topper event

Junior members ran their first event for 28 young sailors from across the region

Draycote sailors, all aged 17, running the racing - Ted Ball, Millie Irish and Ethan Cheshire. Picture by Jonathan Hughes

Draycote Water Sailing Club hosted the eighth and final event in the Midlands Topper Travellers Winter Series with 28 junior sailors travelling from across region to compete.

The Topper is a popular racing dinghy for young people but it wasn’t only the sailors who were juniors. The race team was made up of Draycote Water Sailing Club junior members running their first event.

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Ethan Cheshire, 17, who has been shortlisted for the Rugby Sports Awards 2022 Young Volunteer of the Year, was the principal race officer, assisted by Ted Ball and Youth & Junior Commodore, Millie Irish.

Home sailor Joe Rowe revelled in the breezy conditions, winning the first three races by a considerable margin. Second, also by a good distance on the fleet, was Draycote Water SC’s Jess Powell. Jess almost got the better of Joe in the fourth and final race, leading for most of the race, but Joe overtook to achieve a clean sweep of bullets across all four races.

These results from the event meant that Jess won the traveller series overall and Joe was second, emphasising Draycote Water SC’s superiority in the Topper class.

Oscar Rowe, Joe’s younger brother, came second in the smaller 4.2 Topper rig in both this event and the series.

These three, along with other Topper sailors from Draycote Water SC, will be heading out to the World Championships on Lake Garda in Italy this summer.

Draycote Water SC runs learn-to-sail courses during school holidays and improver fun sessions on Friday nights and Saturday mornings, plus youth and junior racing on Friday evenings and the Draycote Academy, which offers high level racing training.

Sailing offers young people a fun outdoor activity which also teaches life skills such as independence and self-reliance. Find out more at www.draycotewater.co.uk