Guam Youth Sailors Compete in Hong Kong Race Week
Guam youth sailor Eric Thompson, 15, will compete alongside 219 teams from 12 countries in Hong Kong this week during the Hong Kong Race Week (HKRW) series. Racing begins on Thursday for the Guam High School sophomore who has been training with coach Made Bradley, a U.S. Sail certified instructor with the Marianas Yacht Club (MYC).
The two have trained in Sasa Bay and Apra Harbor, and participated in MYC’s Tradewinds Series, to prepare for the regatta, which is a youth world cup pre-qualifying event.
This is the first coaching experience for Bradley, 18, who has been teaching sailing at MYC to both adults and children for the last few years and participated in World Sailing’s Emerging Nation’s Sailing Program in Vanuatu in 2017. “Hong Kong Race Week is an opportunity for me to learn from other coaches and gain experience in teaching performance sailing on the water in an international event,” says Made, (pronounced Mah-day). It is also the first large sailing competition for Eric who learned to sail at age 11. “I have learned so much about sailing techniques over the last two years and have also made lifelong friends through the sport”
The two fundraised and received support from both Guam Sailing Federation and the Marianas Yacht Club. “I am so excited for both Eric and Made to represent Guam in this prestigious sailing event,” said Guam Sailing Federation Kelly Bruce, “this is the first time Guam sailors have participated in HKRW and I look forward to sending more sailors in 2020 as part of our youth sailing development plan.”
“Eric and Made competing in Hong Kong is a result of our investment in certified instructors and a renewed focus on youth sailing development,” said Ginger Porter, Marianas Yacht Club board member. Youth sailing is supported in part through proceeds from the club’s annual Blues by the Bay event.
Made and Eric say they hope to learn even more from a very seasoned field of competitors at Hong Kong Race Week and bring that knowledge back to Guam to share with other sailors.
For more on Hong Kong Race Week visit: https://www.hongkongraceweek.com/
For more on MYC visit: www.marianasyachtclub.org