Splashing sailing action

Leandrea Louw
The annual Namibian sailing season kicked off on 17 December and will conclude on 28 December.

The Junior Nationals are taking place on 17 and 18 December, the Hobie 14 Nationals on 20 and 21 December, and the Hobie 16 nationals on 27 and 28 December. All events are hosted by the Namibia Sailing Association Regattas.

The Walvis Bay Yacht Club also hosts the Bell Buoy race on 19 December and the offshore race on 26 December.

The prize-giving for the 2021 season is set for 30 December at the Walvis Bay Yacht Club at 13:30.

Last year 13 youngsters competed in the Namibia Sailing Association championships. “It was great seeing young and upcoming sailors turning up to participate. We would love to see more people, especially the little ones, participate and get involved in the sport of sailing,” said Lauren Davidson of the Namibia Sailing Association.

Last year father and son Brian and Adriaan Key took first place in the Hobie 16 nationals, followed by Robert Glover and Elliot Oosthuizen with father and daughter Zane and Zia Cooper finishing in the third position.

Walvis Bay Yacht Club Commodore Theo Schoeman handled the offshore and bell buoy race formalities.

Karl Hartman took the honours in the offshore race and Brigitte Zander won the Bell Buoy race.

Both races involve sailing quite a distance. The Offshore race takes place from the Yacht Club to Langstrand and back. The Bell Buoy requires sailing to buoy about 500 metres from Pelican Point and back.

Robert Glover and Elliot Oosthuizen won the 2020 edition of the Bell Buoy race in a time of two hours and 12 minutes. Lauren Davidson and Nabeelah Suleman followed hot on their heels in a time of two hours and 13 minutes. During their race back, Suleman landed in the water. This however did not deter the two ladies from giving the first-place finishers a run for their money.

Brigitte Zander with her Laser boat arrived third. She completed the race in three hours and 20 minutes. She was allowed to start the race an hour earlier than the rest, since she sailed with a smaller boat.

Brian Key and his son Adriaan arrived in the fourth place. They completed the race in two hours and 22 minutes, ahead of Zane and Zia Cooper in fifth spot in a time of two hours and 31 minutes.

Six Hobie Cats and one Laser participated in the competition.

The offshore race, which is usually sailed from Walvis Bay to Swakopmund, was modified last year with participants sailing from Walvis Bay to Langstrand and back again.

Brian and Adriaan Key clinched first place. Lauren Davidson and Ryno Engelbrecht finished second, with Zane and Zia Cooper finishing third.