British Sailing Team enter Stage Two – training together

Hannah Mills and Eilidh McIntyre, women’s 470

As of this week, the British Sailing Team has moved to ‘Stage Two’ in returning to training, allowing doublehanded sailors who don’t live in the same house to train together. It will also allow athletes to train in squads under the guidance of their coaches.

This dispensation is afforded to elite sports under the Government’s latest guidelines for a phased return to training and does not yet apply to members of the general public.

As a precaution, crews will only be allowed to sail within their normal pairing. Extra processes for ensuring health and safety while rigging and derigging will also be implemented.

As per the Department of Culture, Media and Sport (DCMS) guidelines, all British Sailing Team athletes, coaches and support staff have to opt in to return to training, and there is no obligation for anyone to do so.

Screening takes place each day before any athlete or coach begins training, and each athlete works with their coach to carry out a risk assessment of their training plans. Social distancing measures continue to be important and remain in place for everyone except those who live together.

The British Sailing Team’s swift return to the water has been aided by the actions of staff at Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy, who quickly put in place safety measures to allow sailors to access their boats and slipways.

Social distancing rules measures have been implemented in the boat park as well as extra hand washing stations. Launch times are staggered to avoid congestion in the boat park or on slipways. The main academy building remains closed until guidelines allow it to reopen. The British Sailing Team’s indoor training facilities are also currently closed.

The new steps will allow those sailors selected to represent Team GB at the Tokyo 2020 Olympic Games – together with their training partners, teammates and support staff – to refocus on performance with 13 months to go until the rescheduled Games.

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This article was written and/or edited by the UK-based MIN team.

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