TWO local teenagers took podium places as young powerboating enthusiasts from sailing clubs and Sea Cadets across the Yorkshire and Humber region gathered at West Riding Sailing Club
The youngsters travelled to Wintersett Reservoir, Wakefield, to take part in the regional final of the RYA Honda Youth RIB Championship.
In the 13-16 age group, only two seconds separated the top two finishers, as Bridlington’s Will Bell just pipped Flamborough’s Ben Cross to the finish line.
The National Championship sees eight-to-16 year old RIB (Rigid Inflatable Boat) drivers demonstrate their boat handling skills in a race against the clock in the hope of winning a 5m Ribcraft or Honwave T40 for their club.
Although many of the competitors were already experienced around boats, for many of the youngsters this was their first taste of a powerboating competition and they were keen to take part and show off their co-ordination and talent.
The youth class was very competitive and with a time of 1 minute 43 seconds, winner Will Bell just saw off the challenge of team-mate Ben Cross.
Sixteen-year-old Will, who attends Headlands School, was representing the Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club and was only persuaded to enter the competition in the past few weeks.
Now that he will be representing the club in the National Finals he is really excited.
David Hodgkinson, marketing communications manager for event sponsor Honda said: “We are extremely proud that in our 10th year of sponsoring the Honda RYA Youth RIB Championship, we continue to inspire and encourage more young people than ever before to pursue their passion for boating, and also give them the skills to do so.
“It allows us to underline our commitment to safety and best practice, something which we take extremely seriously as a major manufacturer of engines and inflatables.”
8-12 year class
1: Ellie Benn (Otley Sailing Club)
2: Christopher Hulley (Otley Sailing Club)
3: Robby Exley (West Riding Sailing Club)
13-16 year class
1: Will Bell (Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club)
2: Ben Cross (Royal Yorkshire Yacht Club)
3: Josh Peree (Wakefield Sea Cadets)