PHUKET: Sailing gets back to its roots this weekend as Alfie Rowson of the reigning national champion Platu crew on Kingdom Property is set to lead free dinghy sailing lessons for kids and adults at the Ao Chalong Yacht Club (ACYC) Open Day tomorrow.
Rowson, along with fellow Phuket-based sailor Scott Duncanson and Kingdom Property crewmates Trent Pedersen and Tony Harman, won the 2014 Platu sailboat championship by placing third in the Platu Open and scoring three consecutive first places in the Coronation Cup, National Championship and Platu Cup last year (story here).
“The ACYC open day is a great way for people to dip their toes into the world of sailing,” Rowson quipped. “No experience is necessary. Adults and kids aged 7 and up are most welcome.”
The free lessons will be offered in Byte and Mirror dinghies sailing right in front of the ACYC clubhouse, in 30-minute sessions, from 11am to 4pm.
“We will have a safety boat on hand at all times and instructors will be briefing people before they even launch, and life vests will be provided,” said Rowson.
A qualified Royal Yachting Association (RYA) senior instructor for dinghies and cruising yachting instructor, and a graduate of water sports management from Southampton in the UK, Rowson already provides sailing lessons at the ACYC seven days a week.
“From complete beginner up to instructor level, and even to national racing standard,” he explained. “We can progress from that even up to cruising yachting.”
Sailors looking to graduate to the bigger boats can look to join the ACYC race series, raced on Chalong Bay on Sunday, Rowson added.
The next ACYC race day is on Sunday (see 2015 race series begins, click here).
“It is a great way to get sailing, racing and enjoy the sailing experience in Phuket,” he said.
Rowson noted how few people in Phuket enjoy regular sailing in Phuket’s world-renowned waters.
“Just look at the beach, and there are beautiful islands everywhere,” he said.
“It is hard to believe. People come from around the world to enjoy this, but people living here in Phuket have it right on their doorstep and don’t take advantage of it.”
The open day also offers people thinking about joining Phuket’s boating community the chance to speak with ACYC members about what it takes to own a boat in Phuket, and the benefits.
“Food and drinks will be available in the shade of the clubhouse,” Rowson noted.
“It is a good friendly environment, fun for the whole family. You can go sailing or relax on shore.”
For more information about the ACYC, its race series and other events, visit the official website (click here).
— Chris Husted
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