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How bespoke sailing coaching leads to Sunbeam Success

After their first season in a new Sunbeam, Nicola and Mark Harvey felt they were stuck in the bottom third of Itchenor Sailing Club’s highly competitive fleet.

Having come to racing later in life they needed help to become more competitive and move on from just coping. After a fleet coaching day with Mark, they realised they could benefit from some personal coaching, to work better together in the boat and enjoy their racing again.

Mark helped the Harvey’s to help identify areas where they could make some immediate big gains.  Using a mix of bespoke coaching and practicing their new found skills during racing with Mark on board to observe, their confidence grew. Leading to a podium place in Itchenor’s popular Sunbeam Race Week.

I only knew of Mark as the man who wrote THE book everyone reads when they take up racing.  Then I found we could retain him for personal coaching – Wow!  Mark has done two regattas with us and some single training days for the Class (Solent Sunbeams). He has made every element of training and practice valuable yet fun.  He always has the perfect anecdote for every occasion and can improvise a training opportunity out of nothing.

What have I taken from our time with Mark? It’s confidence that we can work out what to do using some basic Rushall principles. He made us focus on what is going to really make a difference in any specific race or part of a race.  And concentrate on what will create speed or advantage in that particular situation – i.e. to prioritise.  Often he helped us not to try to be too clever.  For example, when on a run in Chi harbour, if there’s no clear advantage left or right, just go straight!  Simple but often forgotten.  Mark, please come and sail with us again soon!” Mark Harvey

Sunbeam coaching Itchenor Sailing Club

J97 Jumps up the fleet

Business change manager and keen yacht racer Stewart Sawyer takes a very professional approach to his sailing campaigns.

Wanting to ensure his young crew were working together effectively, he engaged Mark Rushall, to organise a bespoke coaching session.

After working with the team in Falmouth, organising practice and then racing sessions, they saw a major leap forwards in their results, and won the National Championship.

We put all the training into practice and won the J97 champs and IRC too… Best news was we also won the J cup for best overall performance at the regatta. So a big thanks for all the input, you were with us all the way.” Stuart Sawyer

J97 coaching Stewart Sawyer