Ben started his sailing career at MHYC, age 4. They had to start a special category of Tackers classes for the very young one. It was all about having fun, forming relationships, as well as learning the basis of sailing.
Ben progressed through our club’s Discover Sailing Tackers programs. He joined the Opti Squad at age 9 and is now competing at the top level of the Open Fleet. Last year he raced in a number of local and interstate regattas and was placed:
- 8th in the Australian at the Opti Nationals (230+ entries)
- A member of MHYC’s first Open Opti Teams Racing Squad. The team of 4 won the NSW Teams Racing Championships, now proudly displayed in the Youth Sailing Room.
- Overall second in the U15 SailGP Inspire Sydney 2020 on a RS Cat14. They achieved 3 bullets, but we narrowly beaten by one point.
- He was selected for the Australian Optimist Sailing Team in Tallinn Estonia in June 2020 – but we all know what happened to that.
Like a lot of our top sailors, Ben was planning to compete in a number of regattas around Australia and overseas this year, but sadly we know that is not going to happen for a while. In the meantime he is being coached by Rob Brewer and will enter all available regattas. His parents, Carl and Bettina follow him with a great interest and are keen volunteers with our youth sailing program.
We have now seen Ben grow into a remarkable young adult. Recently elected as Youth Sailing Captain of MHYC, he has been a great ambassador for our club, speaking at functions and writing reports. Ben is inspired to share his knowledge, experience, and excitement of sailing to help build our youth sailing.
There have been many disappointments for all of us this year, but especially for Ben. As a member of the Scots College Scottish Band, Ben was supposed to perform at the Edinburgh Tattoo this year. He is a very talented drummer in this school band.
We hope this award will help his with his boat and coaching expenses and maybe in the future, his racing program.