The young Nicholls sisters from Portsmouth High School are halfway through their summer of sailing regattas.
Matilda, 15, a Member of the RYA’s British Youth Sailing Team for the Laser Radial and Flo, 14, a member of the RYA’s British Junior Squad for Laser 4.7 started their summer holidays competing in Nieuwpoort, Belgium in the Laser 4.7 World Championships for sailors under 18. Both Matilda and Flo qualified for the competitive Gold Fleet and at the end of the week Matilda finished a very impressive 6th overall. Flo, thrilled to have qualified for the Gold Fleet, finished 42nd and was the 17th sailor in the U16 category, which bodes well for the future.
The sisters then competed last week at the 150 boat British Laser National Championships in Abersoch, Wales. The wind blew hard for most of the week, making for extremely challenging conditions.
Flo competing in the Laser 4.7 finished the week 5th British sailor and the 1st British Girl, making her the Girls’ National Champion. Meanwhile in the adult Laser Radial Class older sister Matilda was competing against full-time professional sailors in the British Olympic Podium Squad. The windy conditions definitely favoured the heavier and stronger sailors, but Matilda kept scoring consistently solid results to end the week the 7th British sailor, the 4th Youth (U19) sailor, out of the women she finished 3rd overall and 1st Youth Girl, making her the Women’s Youth National Champion.
The summer continues for the girls in their Lasers; Matilda departs this week for the Laser Radial Youth World Championships in Medemblik, Holland. Sister Flo will be racing her Laser 4.7 in the Junior Regatta at Aldeburgh YC in Suffolk.