All sailors finished the Blind Nationals on a high looking at their goals to get set for selections for the 2017 Blind Fleet racing Worlds in Sheboygan.
We started the training with a visit from Helena Lucas Gold and Bronze Paralympic sailor, looking at starting getting to grips with lay lines, despite the lack of breeze each sailor grabbed a chance to gain tips and delve into Helena knowledge.
With a short break for Christmas we were back on the water with David Bedford, getting back to basics key fundamentals to getting it right looking at rules, from David's bag of tricks, he makes all his lectures tactile for all the visually impaired but this way of learning also helps the sighted. This all put into practice on the water in Sonars, great team work and not that cold.
During the winter we also welcomed new sailors Catherine and Paula both B1's, true to say they were welcomed with open arms, both showing true potential for the future.
Winter training continued breaking everything down giving all a chance to have a one to one on areas they had requested. As a team there are different emotions at events, so it was great to welcome Cathy Foster to Saturday evening lectures to share her story of her Olympic career and helping us see how we could look at controlling emotions on the water especially when things aren't always going well. Truly great evening and everyone taking something away.
Winter training continued and it was great to see all growing especially Eddie. Eddie is deaf bind and a fantastic sailor but communicating as a team has often been hard but with the aid of a new loop system we were able to mic up the sighted crew and start to learn how it can work within the team an amazing advance in technology one we are still working with and so looking to building how it can work with all and supporting Eddie as he advances his racing.
Just before final selection we put it all together with the help of Hannah Stodel, fitness and sail setting. It has been amazing the commitment shown by all.
With thanks to UKSA, Ark Sailing, Windermere Outdoor Leisure, Island Sailing Club, CCYC and Red Funnel.