Local clubs get into the Olympic spirit

First published in Afloat

SAILING clubs across the region celebrated the forthcoming OIympic Games by throwing their collective weight behind the RYA’s Push The Boat Out day.

East Dorset Sailing Club may not be the biggest in Poole Harbour but it celebrated the event in real style.

The club’s dinghies and cruisers, dressed overall, sailed past the club pier at 11am and, to get into the spirit, the crew of Jabalani, a J24, dressed as Greek gods complete with Olympic torch.

The cruisers then went racing in the bay with the dinghies competing in the harbour.

All this was followed by a picnic on the beach and novelty races in the dinghies in the afternoon.

Poole Harbour was packed with hundreds of boats as part of the nationwide Olympic spectacle.

The harbour commissioners joined forces with Parkstone Yacht Club to organise more than 200 boats to create the Olympic rings on the water.

Some of Poole Yacht Club’s cruisers joined in with Parkstone, while Poole’s dinghy fleet moved its Studland race day to coincide with the event. Sadly, the lack of wind resulted in a shortened in-harbour course for the racers, with boats competing closely in the light breeze.

Another 30 junior and youth sailors took part in a shepherded cruise around Long Island and back to the club for a barbeque.

The Poole clubs will be watching with interest as local girls Annie Lush , Lucy Macgregor and Kate Macgregor go for gold in the match racing class at Weymouth and Portland starting on Sunday.

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