Reuben Corbett and Greg Dair will lead the Royal New Zealand Yacht Squadron's world-renowned youth training programme, which has produced some of the world's best sailors in the last 30 years.
(Greg Dair and Reuben Corbett)
Corbett takes over as the new training manager from Guy Pilkington, who recently left after 12 years in the role, and Dair will work as assistant coach. Both join Olympic coaches and professional sailors Graeme Sutherland (performance coach) and Laurie Jury (sailing director.)
Already well known to the Squadron, Corbett is a graduate of the youth training programme who then joined the world match racing circuit with many successes in Europe and around the globe. He was ranked in the world's top 10 along with other graduates including Phil Robertson, Adam Minoprio and Jury. Corbett has also been coaching Kerikeri High School for the past eight years, winning six national titles, and has also worked with Jury coaching the Dutch Olympic match racing squad.
“The RNZYS youth training programme was fantastic for me as it provided the opportunity to train hard, build contacts and ultimately form a team to head offshore," Corbett said. "The programme taught me a lot skills in keelboat sailing and working in team environments on the water, so I am very excited to be a part of generating the same change in this year’s trainees.
"It’s fantastic that the RNZYS supports these young guys and girls so much to extend their pathway with the addition of the performance programme. I am really excited about the year ahead and look forward to working with all the young athletes and building on the excellent processes Guy Pilkington has put in place to nurture the next generation of top sailors.”
Dair was born in Los Angeles but his family moved to Kerikeri in 2013. He has been around sailing his whole life and worked as director of the Santa Barbara youth programme.
“Coaching is mainly the only job I have ever had," he said. "The best part is watching each sailor grow and improve. I get a buzz out of watching them launch off into some crazy new opportunity when they graduate”.
The RNZYS youth training programme reaches a formidable milestone this year celebrating its 30th anniversary. The programme started in November 1987 and has produced more than 500 graduates, and the latest intake begin their year on April 29.
“It’s great to have Reuben and Greg onboard as we head into our 30th anniversary," Jury said. "This programme has grown and will continue to grow and shape athletes into great sailors and even better people. The squadron’s commitment to this programme is second to none, and we feel that with the inclusion of the popular Learn to Sail and Learn to Race Training programmes, Greg and Reuben will be an integral part in growing and supporting these programmes.”
The performance programme, which was introduced last year, has already been a success, with members of the team competing in the Extreme Sailing Series.
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