Eric Twiname final

RYA Zone Squads take to the water at Rutland this week

Friday May 9th 2003, Author: Sasha Oswald, Location: United Kingdom
The Zone/Home Country Team based Eric Twiname Final, which is funded by the Eric Twiname Memorial Trust, takes place at Rutland Water Sailing Club this weekend, the 10/11 May. Young sailors will travel from the six English zones, Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland to compete at, what is for many, their first major championships and to try and win the much coveted Eric Twiname Shield for best overall zone or home country.

The top sailors from the RYA Zone Squad have been chosen to represent their zone or home country at this event and for many it is the culmination of a long winters training which began back in September of 2002. Around 200 sailors will compete at the Final and for many it is not only a chance to represent their zone or home country but also their first taste of National competition.

The event is one that has been previously won by Olympic gold medallist Ben Ainslie and it provides an ideal opportunity for the sailors to gain experience of bigger events and begin to make a name for themselves, which will hopefully lead to a place in the RYA National Junior Squad, later this summer.

Teams will consist of a six-boat Optimist and Topper team, of which a third of the helms must be female, a four boat Cadet and Mirror team, and a windsurfing team which will consist of a maximum of eight boards, with a minimum entry of two per class (4.5m, 5.5m, 6.5/6.6m) of which a quarter of the helms must be female.

Six races are scheduled with a practice start for each class before their first race on Saturday. Four races are scheduled to be sailed on the Saturday and two on the Sunday. Racing will take place on trapezoid and windward-leeward courses.

Prizes will be awarded to the first, second and third places and first girl dinghies and windsurfers in each class. The Eric Twiname Dinghy Trophy will be awarded to the zone or home country with the best overall dinghy team and the Eric Twiname windsurfer Trophy will be awarded to the zone or home country with the best overall windsurfing team. The best overall zone or home country team will be awarded the Eric Twiname Shield.

John Reed, a Trustee, said, "The ET Final is the flagship event of the Eric Twiname Trust and we look forward to it every year. May the best team win!"

RYA Youth Racing Manager Steve Joel commented, "I am really looking forward to having a tremendous event this weekend and to seeing some of the stars of the future that have benefited from this winters zone/home country training."

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