The Class Association makes sure that each national championship is as inclusive as possible by ensuring that the focus is just as much on those further down the fleet, as it is on the hotshots fighting it out at the front.
Gold, Silver & Bronze Fleets
As always we will be allocating boats to the Gold, Silver, Bronze, Classic and Youth fleets within the overall results, so that everyone has something to race for.
The Buddy System
In addition the buddy system, which matches boats at the front and back of the fleet, gives the average club sailor a chance to learn from a world champion, but also more importantly it enables those new to the class to quickly make friends. The cumulative scores of each buddy pairing go towards the overall buddy prize.
There is also the Perseverance Trophy, an impressive cut glass Fireball for the last placed boat which finishes every race!
If you have any questions about attending your first Fireball Nationals, Class Chairman Derian Scott is more than happy to answer them.
So what is a Fireball Championship like? Here is what some competitors from recent nationals had to say;
“Get involved!! It’s a great class to be sailing in, with some very close racing and a really friendly atmosphere. Not to mention the chance to sail in some great venues, against some great sailors”.
Mark Hogan 2007 Fireball National Champion Crew
"The racing was good. The race officer was experienced and took advantage of the sea breeze which generally kicked in around noon every day. For us, the first couple of days were fairly lively but we were in control (which was a big improvement on last year)! However, by the middle of the week we were frustrated that we seemed to gain on the beats only to lose on the reaches. No matter what happened though, we received loads of encouragement from other Fireballers, in particular, from Mark Hogan and our ‘buddies’, Ian and Penny Gibbs. Mark spent some time with Bob on the lay day making adjustments to sail controls, and Ian produced a really good sketch on a napkin of how to maximise speed in a Fireball. It definitely helped as for the first time we gained on some of the reaches and actually managed a 21st place in one race. The 2007 Nationals, therefore, ended on a high for us. We thoroughly enjoyed the week and made many new friends, and hope to have improved a bit more for next year’s visit to Mounts Bay"
Debbie Tuckwood FB 14266. Second Wind
"We had an unforgettable week of sailing and it was a brilliant introduction to the class. We have to thank all the companies involved in 'pimping' our boat for giving us a whole stack of brilliant kit but we also have to thank everyone who helped us to set it up and use it. We learned so much and, without them, we would still have been chasing the back of the fleet with the kite in its bag. So thank you to everybody who donated time, spares and advice to us over the week! We highly recommend the Nationals as an event and the Fireball as a class"
Kirsten Claiden-Yardley and Andy Jarvis - Yachts and Yachting Magazine 'Pimp my Dinghy' competition winners