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Aon youth clinics

Xmas Cup to kickstart big summer of youth sailing

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This month's Yachting New Zealand Christmas Cup headlines a return to what is hoped to be a full summer of youth sailing.

The Christmas Cup will be hosted by the Royal Akarana Yacht Club on December 18-19 and comes immediately after a two-day Aon National Youth Clinic at the same venue.

It is open to all youth classes with the exception of the boy's and girl's 420, who will be in New Plymouth for the 420 North Island Championships and will have their own clinic immediately prior to this.

"We've got a busy summer planned and the Yachting New Zealand Christmas Cup is a really exciting way to kick it all off," Yachting New Zealand youth and event manager Sam Mackay said.

"It's a good opportunity to give these youth sailors some quality racing after what has been a pretty difficult period with various restrictions in place around the country due to Covid-19. And the racing won't be far away from where the youth trials will be held in February as part of the Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta."

The Aon National Youth Clinics are regularly attended by this country's best youth sailors, who receive coaching and guidance from Yachting New Zealand's world-class coaches.

Already lined up to help coach this summer are Olympic coaches Mark Howard, Nathan Handley and Geoff Woolley as well as new Yachting New Zealand women's sailing manager and former Olympic champion Jenny Armstrong as well as new Laser world champion Tom Saunders.

Applications to attend the Aon National Youth Clinics are open until December 14 and cost $550 a year for Auckland-based sailors and $350 for those outside Auckland. Returning sailors will receive a $100 discount because of cancelled clinics this year.

An Aon Laser Radial Clinic will be held in Picton on the eve of the Laser national championships in mid-January, when another Aon National Youth Clinic will also be held in Auckland.

"We are pretty excited to be able to get back into youth clinics," Mackay said. "The ones coming up last this month will be a good opportunity to learn off some world-class coaches and support staff, share information and simply get to know other sailors from around the country. 

"We're looking forward to being able to pull together a few clinics leading into February's Oceanbridge NZL Sailing Regatta and then build on that as sailors hopefully prepare for some international events during the winter of 2022."

In accordance with the Covid-19 Protection Framework (traffic light system), all competitors/sailors, coaches, volunteers, event staff and race officials at Yachting New Zealand events and clinics will need to be fully vaccinated against Covid-19 and provide proof on entry.

Entry to the Christmas Cup is $30 and can be found here. More information on the Aon National Youth Clinics, including applications, can be found here.

Yachting New Zealand also host Aon Regional Clinics and Aon New to Class Clinics.