Ben is up for the challenge

16-year-old Matlock sailor Ben Haynes
16-year-old Matlock sailor Ben Haynes

MATLOCK-BASED dinghy racing sailor Ben Haynes is in the Czech Republic this week to compete in the World Championships for the Splash Class dinghy that he sails.  

Ben, 16, who attends Highfields School and is the sole British entry in the event, taking place on Lake Lipno, is a member of Trent Valley Sailing Club and Derbyshire Youth Sailing. Before his departure, Ben said: “I am a bit nervous about racing in the Worlds.

“I went to the European Championships last year in Holland and did reasonably well, considering I hadn’t been sailing the Splash all that long.  Now I’ve had some coaching and a lot more racing experience in the Splash during the last year and I am hoping this pays off.”

Ben was a part of the successful Derbyshire Youth Sailing team to secure the title of Best Overall Team at the National School Sailing Association annual National Youth Regatta, in July.

He achieved a podium place in third within his fleet, sailing his Splash dinghy.

“The Splash Class International Association and the UK association have been fantastic to help Ben go and compete in the Worlds as the only British entry. Ben will give it his all to do his best.” commented Ben’s dad, Mike Haynes.

Ben has travelled to the event on his own with help from the SCIA. He has been aided by the UK Splash Class Association in funding support coaching at the event.

The Worlds event is five days of racing which started on Monday. There are 67 competitors involved.