Report: Peta Stuart-Hunt
All photos: Chris Gillingham
Hamble, Hampshire, UK
Plaudits & a stunning array of trophies were awarded – including the ‘Champion of Champions’ prize – at the Royal Southern Yacht Club’s annual Prizegiving held on Saturday 14th November.
The Royal Southern Yacht Club and its membership have enjoyed a truly outstanding year of success both in UK waters and on the world’s sailing stage. The Club’s packed on-water programme has combined top quality racing and superb cruising for sailing and motor boating members, with some terrific results being gained across the board.
Added to this intoxicating mix was the commissioning of the Prince Philip Yacht Haven by its Patron, HRH The Duke of Edinburgh in June, providing a first-class facility and lasting legacy for members, visiting yachtsmen and the Hamble community.
Following a sumptuous three course dinner provided courtesy of the Club and enjoyed by 145 guests, the annual Prizegiving commenced under the stewardship of the Rear Commodore Sailing Graham Nixon, accompanied by the evening’s special guest, Libby Greenhalgh, the navigator on Team SCA in the Volvo Ocean Race, handing out the prizes.
There are over 100 trophies and awards and in a fitting opener to the presentations, it was Cadet, Youth and Academy members being recognised first. Trophies went to Ben Childerley, Charles Handley, Finlay Craigen and Chris James.
The Junior Cadet and Optimist sailor Isabelle Waha was the recipient of the inaugural Richard Cann Trophy, presented by Richard’s parents in his memory. Richard was a member of the Club from the age of 12, but very sadly passed away last year.
British Sailing Team member Hannah Diamond was awarded the Morning Flight Trophy for an outstanding performance in double-handed racing in the Nacra 17. Hannah is currently in Rio preparing for December’s Copa do Brasil, the last regatta in the Olympic venue before the games next year.
Special prizes also went to Annabel Vose and Nikki Curwen. Annabel’s in recognition of her outstanding performance this year, winning the Women’s World Youth Match Racing championship, the Student Yachting Worlds; she was a semi-finalist at the Eurosaf & ISAF Youth Worlds, as well as being a member of the first all-female crew in this year’s Rolex Fastnet Race, sailing Concise 2 in the Fast 40 class. Nikki qualified for this year’s Mini Transat and is currently mid-Atlantic, en-route to Guadeloupe in her Classe Mini 6.5m. Both are products of the Royal Southern’s youth development and Academy programmes.
Hotly contested ‘Champion of Champions’
The Royal Southern’s Summer Series Regattas are perhaps the most hotly contested of all the Club events and the prestigious ‘Champion of Champions’ title was once again up for grabs this year. The ‘Champion of Champions’ award honours performance and consistency across all the classes of yacht that compete in the Royal Southern Yacht Club Summer Series.
The wonderful prize, donated by Barbados Tourism Marketing, comprises flights and hotel accommodation in Barbados for two people for one week in January giving them the opportunity to take part in Barbados Week, enjoy all the legendary Bajan hospitality that surrounds race week on the Island, including the Mount Gay Round Barbados Race.