Recently, I had the pleasure of spending the weekend at Girton Sailing Club undertaking the RYA Safety Boat Course.
This was a two-day course where we looked at rescuing multiple craft using a powerboat.
We met on a foggy Saturday morning at the sailing club where we were taught how to ensure that the boat was in good condition, fully fuelled and bungs in place for the day. We then checked the safety kit was on the boat. This included 2-way radios, first aid kit, throwlines etc.
It was then out on to the water to refresh our handling skills. We had a great time driving the powerboat up and down the lake at full speed until the instructor reminded us that most of the manoeuvres, we would undertake would be very fine, delicate low speed manoeuvres into the wind. We then had to switch our mindset and concentrate on the low speed manoeuvres. This was quite tricky initially with quite a lot of laughing and cursing.
We then went onto learning our rescues. This included rescuing sailing boats, both single and double handers, canoes, kayaks, wind surfers and kite surfers.
One fun part of the training came towards the end of the course, where we had to pull alongside a moving craft, usually a sailing boat but in this case, we used a powerboat. Lots of fun was had chasing the instructor across the lake training to pull alongside and match his speed.
This was a great weekend, delivered by the fantastic training team at Girton Sailing Club. I would strongly recommend this club if you fancy learning to sail or to develop water-based skills.