Academy 2015 Autumn Review


Istanbul 2K
A team of eight academicians headed to Istanbul Sailing Club from the 9th to 11th October, for a long weekend of 2 boat team racing set against the byzantine backdrop of the Topkapi Palace. The RTYC Platu 25 keelboats were helmed by Ben Gratton and Josh Flack, who had steered Royal Thames to the silver medal at the RYS Bicentenary 2K event. However, this was the first experience of the senior 2K team racing circuit for many of the team.
Friday began well with a comfortable win against Istanbul University, and a very narrow loss to current 2K tour leaders, DMTRA (The Dutch). This was followed by a win against a strong local team from the Istanbul Yelken Kulübü and a loss to defending champions RRT (Rome), placing RTYC in equal fourth overnight.
Racing continued in a similar vain for the rest of the weekend, although the glorious conditions of Friday were gradually replaced with light and shifty winds and drizzle. Some close losses on the finish line cost the RTYC team a few crucial points, eventually placing them in seventh, although within 3 points of the eventual winners, DMTRA, highlighting how close racing is on the 2K circuit. Despite this, the team had a very enjoyable weekend, enjoyed excellent hospitality from the ISC, and are looking forwards to future 2K events in Europe.

Left: Royal Thames covering and in control on Day 1 of the Istanbul 2K.
Right: The team at dinner, back row (L to R): Phil Derry, Josh Flack, Ben Gratton, Will Reid.
Front: Ben Rahemtulla, Lilly Carlisle, Lottie Rapson, Honor Fell.

Team Racing
Back in the UK, the academy has also had a very successful, albeit somewhat chillier, start to the winter team racing season.
The academy team, Royal Thames Blue, met for an initial weekend of informal firefly team racing at Bough Beech in mid-October, sailing well to place second against a strong field of teams, many of which included past or present national team racing champions.
They then proceeded to the Oxford Magnum over halloween weekend, the premier team racing event in the autumn calendar. Light winds were the order of the day, but the academy team reveled in the conditions, losing just a single race (to the senior RTYC team!) to sit in third overnight and comfortably qualify for the Gold League. A strong start on Sunday morning saw them move to the head of the Gold league, beating strong teams from Cambridge University and the Oxford & Cambridge Sailing Society. Unfortunately, as the afternoon rolled around the wind faded to nothing, just a few races short of the number needed to complete the gold fleet. The final results were thus calculated from Saturday’s races only, with Society taking the champagne ahead of Royal Thames Red and leaving the academy team in a narrow third, from a field of 20 teams.

Oxford Magnum 2015: Royal Thames Blue team members Arthur Henderson and Lilly Carlisle relax between races. Other team members: Josh Flack & Francine Counsell, Fiona Hampshire & Honor Fell.

We are always on the lookout for strong sailors under the age of 26 to join the RTYC academy. We have a highly varied and attractive calendar of dinghy and keelboat events for 2016, both fleet and team racing. If you know of suitable candidates please get in touch, or nominate them for membership!
Joshua Flack
RTYC Academy Captain 2015-16