The already successful Splash class is preparing for this year’s world championship which is taking place in the UK
The 2001 season was a record year for the Splash class. The appointment of Pinnell & Bax as UK distributors coupled with rapidly growing interest in the class resulted in membership increasing by over 35 per cent, record entries for the national cahmpionshiup and a 17-strong UK team going to the world championship in Brittany.
This year also promises to be a hugely exciting year. Late July will see Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy hosting the 2002 world championship. A combined fleet of 200 Splash and Flash dinghies are expected to participate in the third Splash world championship and Flash Eurocup, making it one of the largest single class dinghy events in the UK this year. Competitors are expected from locations including New Zealand, which provided the first World Champion, USA, Canada, France, Belgium, UK and the Netherlands, birth place of the Splash and the current World Champion. It is also hoped that the event will attract competitors from the recently-formed Polish Splash Association.
The official world championship website at www.splashworldwide.org is now on-line and accepting electronic entries. The response has been overwhelming, boding well for the regatta.
As if that’s not enough, the Flash has been presented to ISAF as a potential replacement for the Europe in the 2008 Olympics. The concept is for a strict one-design boat, which can be unpacked from a box at the event and go on to win. This is exactly what happened when Conrad Gair from New Zealand sailed a charter boat, straight out of its wrapper, to win the first ever worlds held in Stavoren, Netherlands.
The Splash, now an internationally recognised class that bridges the competition gap between the Optimist and Laser classes, is a 3.5 metre, single-handed dinghy with a lively performance provided by its 5.5 square metre rig. It is easy to sail, yet sensitive to technique and tuning and is enjoyed by a wide variety of helms, from novice to expert. It enjoys competitive sailing with a wide range of crew weights from 45 to 70 kg. The Flash is a more powerful version of the Splash. While using the same hull, the performance is enhanced by using a longer boom and a 7.0 sq m sail.
For more information, visit the stand at the Sailboat on 2-3 March in the Grand Hall, Stand A5. Or contact Liz Chettleburgh, UKSCA Secretary, 25 Damgate Lane, Acle, Norwich, NR13 3DH Email firstname.lastname@example.org For a host of Splash information, regatta reports, events list and the latest Splash gossip, visit the UKSCA website at: www.splashes.org.uk.