Ripon Sailing Club, RC Yacht section returned to RC Sailing on Wednesday 10th June, the clubhouse remains out of bounds with the exception of the WC which has a one in one out policy managed by a revolving status sign, hand washing is supplemented by alcohol gel dispensers in key areas around the site.
We are lucky in that access to the clubhouse/wc is via an automatic door, removing a potential touch point and providing easy access.
We have placed 6 numbered control stations on the lake shore set just over 2m apart, helms are allocated a start position and then move on to the next numbered station after each race, this provides an equitable solution to start line, windward and leeward mark visibility, the start line is set close to position 3 with the helm on position 3 managing the start and finish lines. Courses are set quite small so that marks are visible and no walking the lake shore is required or allowed. The area behind the control positions is large enough to allow a one way system to be used when helms change control positions.
The course set, is a simple windward leeward one, again so that all marks are easily visible from all control positions.
A two person safety boat launch procedure has been risk assessed and implemented so that we can provide mark laying and dead boat retrieval facilities, the safety boat is manned by one person as this is our usual method of operation and therefore has approved risk assessments in place. The safety boat control and touch points are fully sanitised after use.
The club managed full risk assessments for all of our return to sailing activity, both full size and RC, these were submitted to and approved by the clubs insurers, we comply with government guidelines on social distancing and outdoor group activity.
The RYA has produced a raft of useful information for clubs and has stepped up to the plate in providing guidance to clubs in all aspects of getting us on the water again. Their website is providing a very good service to members and affiliated clubs.
A question I have is why is the MYA committee so inactive in promoting a return to sailing and helping clubs to achieve this within the current government guidelines for outdoor activity?
For many this is far more important than the proposed constitution changes that appear to be centre stage at the moment. Covid-19 is going to be with us for some considerable time so it is important that we address as many issues as we can that will allow us to regain some normality for the sport, it may not be sailing as it once was but it is still sailing.