With the Aberdeen Asset Management Under 25 Trophy announced earlier this year, there couldn't be a better time for young sailors to get involved with Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week.
Although the attractive offer of support with the cost of the entry fee and crew kit, which was given to the first 10 entries received from teams of young sailors under the age of 25, was snapped up, there is still a chance for any under 25 year-old teams to compete for the inaugural Aberdeen Asset Management Under 25 Trophy. For young sailors who are helming with a mixed aged crew of family and friends, the Young Skipper’s Trophy, which has been running for many years, is still up for grabs too.
Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week has always been popular for young competitors because not only does the event provide the most amazing platform from which it is possible to compete on equal terms with sailors of all ages and abilities – from club to Olympic sailors – but it also gives young sailors a perfect opportunity to realise their sailing potential.
Fred Warren-Smith started crewing at Cowes Week at the age of 10 for his father, Steve. He now helms and has, on many occasions, wiped the floor with the opposition in the highly competitive Squib fleet. He helmed his first Cowes Week in 2009, aged 13, winning three races and finishing fourth and then won the Squib Class in 2010 when he was just 14.
Fred, chatting about what makes Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week so special, said: “I have always really enjoyed sailing at Cowes Week, although I feel that only now, as a 16-year-old, am I finally becoming aware of all the aspects of the event. Many of my friends from the local island-based Royal Victoria Yacht Club are competing this year which will be good because it means that I will be able to socialise after racing with them. Cowes is the perfect place for this. It is buzzing during the event and there is just so much to do. This is why I love Cowes, there is the serious and competitive sailing side of it, but then the partying and socialising in the evening to finish it off.”
The Squib is an ideal boat for youngsters and, of 28 entries so far, six are being helmed by Under 25s, all from the Royal Victoria Yacht Club. Three of these are crewed entirely by Under 25 year-olds including Ben and Chris Gibson, Sophie and Emma Baker, and George Downer and Dom Mortimer. Competition in this class will be red hot.
One of the youth teams to have signed up for the Aberdeen Asset Management Under 25 Trophy includes Emma Hattersly who, aged just 15, is sailing on a Fox Terrier 22 with a team of friends.
To stake your claim for a place on the start line for a chance to win the Aberdeen Asset Management Under 25 Trophy, or the Young Skipper’s Trophy, there is still time to enter.
For those not already connected to a boat, but who would also like to take part, there are many opportunities for crewing positions for young sailors. The best place to make contact with a racing team is here - enter your details on the Crew Search form.
Article by CWL/Sue Pelling
- www.aamcowesweek.co.uk Aberdeen Asset Management Cowes Week 2012 website