Star-studded RYA Volvo Dinghy Show

Olympic and round the world heroes in attendance over first weekend in March

Tuesday February 15th 2011, Author: Emma Slater, Location: United Kingdom

Alongside the hundreds of exhibitors at this year’s RYA Volvo Dinghy Show 2011, some of sailing's top sailors will also be at the show sharing top tips, giving advice and mingling with visitors and answering your questions.

Unfortunately Ben Ainslie, who was originally planning on attending the show, has had to pull out. "The next couple of months are going to be crucial in my bid to qualify for the London 2012 Olympics and with this in mind I’ve decided to commit more time to training in Palma ahead of the Princesa Sofia and Hyeres ISAF World Cup Regatta’s," said Ben. "Unfortunately this has meant I can longer attend the RYA Volvo Dinghy Show. The Dinghy Show is really important to our sport as it’s the only one dedicated to dinghy sailors. It’s a fantastic event for sailors of all ages and abilities to pick up some of the latest kit and get advice from the people at the top level of the sport. I’m disappointed not to be there but look forward to attending many more shows in the years to come.”

To kick start the weekend it’s over to the ladies to open the show. Double gold Olympic medallist; Skandia Team GBR’s Sarah Gosling (nee Webb), British Paralympic and Team Volvo for Life sailor Helena Lucas and Skandia Team GBR 470 sailor Penny Clark, will sound the official starter's hooter declaring the show open.

Throughout the day all three will be taking part in various show activities Sarah  will be presenting prizes on the Volvo main stage (13.15) to the Topper class before taking centre stage for the Olympic update (13.45) before being joined by RYA Deputy Chairman Stacey Clark to announce the exciting new RYA Sail for Gold programme.

Penny Clark will be joining Grahame Foreshaw in the Coaching Area at midday for the ever popular Basic Rig Tuning talk. It’s then over to the Cherub class where she will be acting as judge for the ‘Get your heart baking’ competition (14.30, West Corridor), before ending the day handing out prizes on the Volvo Main Stage for winners of the great Diamond Treasure Hunt (16.15) and unveiling the RYA Club of the Year (16.45).

It’s also a packed agenda for Team Volvo for life sailor Helena Lucas who will be joining TV’s Chris Packham for the 2010 Volvo Eco Challenge presentations (13.30) on the Volvo Main Stage. At 15.45 in the Coaching area Helena will join the RYA Sailability Team to launch the new Sailability Volunteer Log Book, before joining Penny on the Volvo Main Stage for the Diamond Treasure Hunt prize giving, before presenting the Volvo RYA Champion Club awards. Throughout the day you’ll also be able to have a chat with Helena on the Volvo Stand (F38) or come see her in the Volvo Chill Out Zone (14.30 – 15.30), in front of the main entrance to Alexandra Palace.

As well as our leading ladies, on Saturday we are joined by round the world sailor Mike Golding. Mike will be joining the Green Blue team (14.45, RYA Stand, Panorama Hall) to launch their new Green Guide for Clubs, before hopping on to the Volvo Main Stage at 16.00 to launch the new kids book Go Green!

Then on Sunday we’re joined by 2009 World Champion, Olympic bronze medallist and Team Volvo for life sailor RS:X Windsurfer Nick Dempsey. Nick kick starts his day over in the Coaching area (10.45) where he will join the team behind National Windsurfing Week to launch the 2011 event. He will also be speaking about Windsurfing for Cancer Research charity race Sunrise to Sunset, for which he is an ambassador (also at 15.30 coaching area).

At 13.45 Nick will be on the Volvo Main Stage giving an Olympic update as well as answering your questions sent in to the show. It’s still not too late to submit your question just email But if you fancy getting a bit closer then you can find him on the Volvo Stand (F38) and in the Volvo Chill Out Zone at various points throughout the day.

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