Nearly 30 sailors took part in a four-day clinic in the Marlborough Sounds last week as they went in search of speed.
The Need for Speed Optimist Clinic was run by the Queen Charlotte Yacht Club and was notable for the fact it was a live-in camp in a remote location. The sailors met on the shores of Shelly Beach in Picton, said goodbye to their families and sailed out of the harbour and into the heart of the Sounds for the three-night, four-day clinic.
The remote location, in which attendees stayed in cabins at the Mistletoe Bay Eco Village, meant they were able to focus on their sailing without other distractions.
A range of conditions, from light and shifty to 25-knot gusts, meant each sailor made significant improvements under the watch of head coach Taylor Penwell of the Queen Charlotte Yacht Club. Penwell had a number of good coaches alongside him, including two-time NZL Optimist Asian team coach Tam Lindsay and Steph Vining (Nelson Yacht Club) as well as a handful of younger buddy coaches - Nacra pair Harry Edwards and Emily Overend (Emily was first girl at the 2018 Starling nationals), Caleb Barnes (captain of the Marlborough Boy's College sailing team) and Starling sailor Ella Wilcox.