«Saturday 11th November 2017
The Otter End of Season Prize Giving was literally a sell out with 116 Otters and their parents sitting down for dinner. Following the excellent food the Otter Commodore, Harry Phelps, gave a splendid speech running through the season’s highlights before awarding the prizes.
Along with trophies for the season’s winners, of course, amongst each fleet there were also awards and prizes for the close seconds, some thirds and Endeavour awards for those who had persevered throughout the season.
Three trophies really stood out – the first of which was the Pat Dyas Trophy for the Best outside performance which went to Ben Hutton-Penman, for winning the Feva Nationals and top 6th result in the Worlds, who gave a brilliant speech to highlight the Class in his thank you address. The second was the coveted Otter Loyalty Crystal, won jointly by Christie Peel and Tom Rands, for their commitment to the Otters throughout the season. Finally, and by no means least, the presentation to our retiring ‘Trainer on the Pond’, Phil Aspinall was duly marked with a few highlights of his 12 years of coaching by the words of an ex Commodore which reduced all (Phil included) but the hardest of us to tears!
Sorry I can’t be there to say this in person but on behalf of all the ex-Otters that were taught by Phil I would like thank you for being such an inspirational trainer. You made it fun, took away the fear and developed many children’s skill and love of sailing that will last a lifetime. I still never forget the things you taught us and even use your hookey thumb and other sayings, not only when I sail, but when I now teach people myself!
- Scarlett Anderson, Otter Commodore 2015
Both the President Judy Waples and Vice-president Rachel Threfall were full of praise for the remarkable season the Otters have had this year.
Following the presentations celebrations continued for the Otters (and quite a few parents) as they danced the rest of the night away to the traditional end of season disco.
Justin Waples and Kate Rands