Click slideshow to expand it - photos by the Grayson Family
What a fantastic weekend we had at West Lancs! With a wonderful 9 boats it was a fun packed weekend, not even the cold could put them off. It was great to see most of the boats from the previous training weekend had travelled all the way over to give it another shot and more importantly the improvements were incredible to watch!
We had a few new boats as well who were reasonably new combinations which was great to see, especially because the standard of the sailing was so good. In true Mirror sailor fashion, everyone was included during briefings, the sailing and in the social on Saturday. It was lovely to witness new friendships and sailing partnerships being formed, hopefully discovering the greatness of Mirror sailing and what you can get out of it. The weekend was not only focused on sailing, but was focused on the lifestyle; getting excited to see your friends, having a little bit of friendly competition between boats, travelling to places you may not have been before.
Blessed by the wind gods, we had nice, light conditions on the Saturday to get some essential boat handling practice in, followed by a lovely breeze on the Sunday. Windy enough to test confidence, but not so windy to knock it. Saturday was all about getting people used to the boats again and looking at basic sailing skills. On Saturday evening most of the sailors went out bowling, giving the children opportunity to bond and also giving the parents the opportunity to have a chat and relax -as we know how hard parents work to make these things happen!! From the success of the activities on Saturday, we introduced a more competitive side to the sailing on Sunday afternoon with a few, very relaxed races with the intention of bringing another element to sailing for those who are thinking about going on to race and do events. This proved to be a great success and a fun experience for everyone.
Overall the weekend was a huge success and I have already been asked when the next one will be! It is absolutely wonderful, especially for me, to see this because Mirror sailing and squads are what I believe to have guided my passion for sport and helped me become who I am today. So, on a personal note, I feel very privileged to know that I may have shown some other youngsters what a great opportunity lies before them, and I hope that they get as much out of it as I have.
Finally, the weekend would not have been possible without the help of all the parents who brought boats and sailors so a huge thank you to them. Of course to my parents who ran the galley and kept us supplied with hot food and drinks all weekend. A huge thank you to Sarah, Gabe and Ben Hill, who gave up their entire weekend to help us, including: coming down on Friday night to let all the campers in; sort out all of the housekeeping; organising the social; helping in the galley; sorting out rescue boats and manning the rescue boats! And finally, an extra special thank you to my wonderful co-coach/sister Rachel, this weekend would not have been as great as it was without all of your help and expertise!
So once again thank you to everyone involved with the organising of this weekend and I think I speak for both Rachel and I when I say we can’t wait for the next one!!