SAILING PICTURES: Visitors enjoy Draycote Sailing Club's Open Day

Stand Up Paddleboarding introduced for first time this year

More than 200 people took to the water at Draycote Water Sailing Club’s annual Open Day, most going sailing but many also trying windsurfing, kayaking and Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP), which was introduced this year.

In the light winds, Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) and canoeing were popular activities

In the light winds, Stand Up Paddleboarding (SUP) and canoeing were popular activities

Even though the winds were light, everyone clearly enjoyed themselves. Big smiles were the order of the day as visitors of all ages came off the water. “SUP is a great addition to what the Club can offer, particularly for low wind days when sailing or windsurfing may be less interesting,” said Club manager Dave Rowe.

Families with young children went out in sailing dinghies to discover the fun and excitement of being on the water and many took the chance to helm the boat under the watchful eye of an experienced sailor.

More than 35 club members gave up their time and were on hand to tell visitors about sailing, help them with the appropriate gear as well as taking them out on the water. Some visitors were surprised to hear that you don’t need your own sailing gear or even boat to go sailing at Draycote, as members can hire these from the club as they require.

“Although numbers were down on last year’s record,” said Commodore Jeremy Atkins, “Those who came showed a keen interest in the different types of water sport available at the Club and the smiles on the faces of those taking part show how watersports can be enjoyed by a wide range of people.”

An instructor explains the basics of sailing

An instructor explains the basics of sailing

Many visitors signed up on the day for the club’s Get Sailing Introductory Lessons which will hopefully lead them onto a lifetime of enjoyment of the sport. Others signed up directly for RYA training courses. Adult and Junior courses are run through the summer and intensively over the school holidays. Courses can be booked directly at the club’s website http://www.draycotewater.co.uk

The Open Day was part of the Royal Yachting Association (RYA)’s nationwide ‘Push the Boat Out’ initiative to get sailing clubs and centres across the country inviting local people to come and ‘have a go’ at sailing and windsurfing.

Draycote Water is an RYA Champion Club, an RYA-approved Training Centre and OnBoard Centre. Visit www.draycotewater.co.uk or contact (01788) 814418.

Youre never too young to make a start at sailing

Youre never too young to make a start at sailing

Visitors transferring from a powerboat to a sailing boat on the water

Visitors transferring from a powerboat to a sailing boat on the water

Sailing is a sport for all the family

Sailing is a sport for all the family

All smiles on a sail across the water

All smiles on a sail across the water

Learning under the watchful eye of an experienced windsurfer

Learning under the watchful eye of an experienced windsurfer

Trying windsurfing

Trying windsurfing