Today is Wednesday 19th September
Tides - 08:23 (3.8M) 21:26 (3.8M)

Chairman's 2018 Welcome

Dear Otters and Parents,

Welcome to the 2018 season….where did the winter go?

The energy that surrounds the ‘off season’ is amazing and brilliant to see, and one that many Otters are involved in, whether that’s squad sailing at all levels in Oppies, Teras, Toppers, Lasers or even sailing in the 420 U.17 Worlds Championships in Australia over Christmas.   A huge personal achievement (as the voting for the award comes from his peers) also came for Ben Hutton-Penman, first, for just being nominated for Yachts & Yachting’s Youth Sailor of the year award, and then being voted for it, and finally for being awarded the title at the London Boat Show earlier this year.  Well done and richly deserved Ben from all the Otters!

This year’s Start of Season meeting is Saturday 10th March, when you’ll be able to meet up with friends and your Trainer for the year, and then take advantage of Andy of Yachting Solutions to look over your boat in readiness for sailing the following Saturday.  Before lunch for all (please book in advance with the Club office) there will be a great opportunity for both Otters and parents to row in the Burnham Coastal Rowing Gigs that will be at the end of the pontoon (please bring suitable layered clothing and a life jacket).

The Start of Season will also provide an opportunity to hear from your new Otter Commodore, Colette Bacon, who has great enthusiasm, energy and ideas for the forthcoming season, and importantly is always wanting to embrace anything exciting and fun (and of course safe!).  Supporting Colette this year, and also on hand at the meeting, will be Tom Rands, Vice Commodore, Sophie Dawson and Izzie Corbett, Rear Commodores, and Scott Ellis, Secretary.  The Flag Officers will also be regularly at the Club on Saturdays if you would like to raise any Otter issues with them. 

Last November at the End of Season Prize Giving I mentioned that we need as many parents to drive ribs, handle radios, and have the First Aid qualification which are all vital to the running of the Otters as a voluntary club.  For those that sail and would like to help on the water, the RYA Club Racing Coach certificate (weekend course) is useful, and ideally required.  Contact the Club office on 01621 782105 to check dates and register your interest in any of the courses.

A key date to focus on this year (among others!) is Saturday 12th May which is the RYA Push the Boat Out Day ….’Try Sailing’ to you and me.  The Otters aim to be hugely involved with this RCYC run event, so please do arrange to bring family and friends down to give sailing a try for the morning as we’ll be having Topper Sports, Squibs, Dragons, Cruisers all available to try!  Coinciding with our regular Otter Fundraiser Day, it promises to be a great event, which needs as much support as possible - so all hands on deck please!!!

Amongst many things from last year the Topper Sports and the Sailing on Sundays are and were a massive success for both the Otters and the Royal Corinthian, so if you as an adult would like to either learn to sail, or just build confidence, do give them a try.  We had over 60 adults and children sailing in them last summer!

Finally a reminder that the 2018 Membership Fees are now due and I would ask that you all complete and return your renewal forms to Kate Rands, our Membership Secretary, as soon as possible before Friday 2nd March.

I hope you all have a very enjoyable sailing season, and look forward to seeing you all on the 10th March for the Start of Season Lunch (please book in with the Club), and, by way of interest, the Dinghy Show is at Alexandra Palace the weekend before, so maybe see some of you there.  Ben H-P and Victor Brellisford are on the main stage talking at some point too!

Justin Waples

Chairman, on behalf of the Otter Management Committee