Hull Collegiate School Year 12 student Poppy sails in the Topper World Championships in China

18th September 2018

Poppy started sailing when she was 10 at a local sailing club near Snaith.

She started serious competing at 12 years of age when she qualified to join the Royal Yachting Association Zone Squads in her Topper dinghy. This is the Olympic sailing pathway that Team GB use to train up future Olympic sailors. Only 15-18 children gain a place per zone (North of England, Midlands, South East and South West England, Scotland and Wales).

Poppy trains every winter and is required to enter specific national competitions which take place in the summer all over the UK. She also trained with the ITCA Youth Squad, which is a specific squad for the dinghy she sails.

This year Poppy qualified to sail in the Topper World Championships in China in August. She was amongst 200 competitors who raced in Weymouth, Lowestoft and Rutland culminating in the Topper National Championships in Pwllheli, Wales.

There were 200 competitor places of which 100 went to Chinese competitors and the other for worldwide Topper sailors. Poppy got a boat with new sails to compete in for the championships.

Unfortunately there was no official world champion this year as due to the weather conditions: the first 2 days of sailing were called off due to a Typhoon in the area!.

Poppy said, ‘’I love the freedom I get with sailing. I am very competitive so to qualify for the championships in China was fantastic. It was an amazing experience to be there amongst so many other people who were all of a massively high standard. It’s a lot of hard work but I absolutely love it. Sailing makes me a better, stronger person. I work hard at school and get a lot of support from my teachers. I’ve just started Sixth Form which I’m loving already. Sailing helps me keep a steady mind whilst working towards my A Levels.’’

Alex Wilson, Headmistress, said ‘’This is a fantastic achievement and a wonderful chance to travel to other parts of the world. Well done Poppy!”