Topper Race Group

The Topper is a popular boat at Chew Valley Lake. Toppers are sailed for fun and raced by all ages. They are a great boat for beginners to learn in and there is a full programme of events throughout the year at Chew to help support young sailors learning to sail, through to those wanting to develop their racing skills.

The club has a number of Toppers for use by junior members participating in our Chew Crew or RYA Courses.

Specific activities range from RYA Youth Sailing Scheme qualification courses, Chew Crew on Sundays during the season, and formal race training in the Topper Race Group.  The Topper Race Group is open to anyone who can confidently sail a triangular course and is keen to learn about racing.  Sessions are held on an ad hoc basis throughout the year. We often source external RYA qualified coaches and International Topper Class Association (ITCA) coaches to share their skills and knowledge.  Sessions are listed on the Youth Calendar and more information is available from the Youth Team whose contact details are listed on the Youth contact pages.

The fleet is active in the local South-West ITCA traveller series, at Topper national events (where over the years, club sailors have competed at the very top level and bought home some of the major prizes) and a number of sailors have successfully been selected to participate in regional and national RYA and ITCA development squads.

Topper Fleet Racing and Regional Topper Events

Toppers start in the ‘Junior’ start as part of the main CVLSC club racing.

Chew has a strong track record of success at both national and international events.

The best way to get into Topper racing is to join in the Topper Race Group events.

International Topper Class Association

ITCA organise a regional ‘Traveller’ series and also Open Training at various clubs around the region. For a list of dates and venues visit their website or contact the area reps. Full details of these and other Topper class events are also available from the Topper Class association website.

Topper Events at CVLSC

As part of the ITCA series, CVLSC usually hosts a Topper Open meeting annually. There is usually a training event on the Saturday and an Open race on the Sunday – there could be up to 40 sailors for you to race against! You can book this via the ITCA website.

RYA British Youth Sailing Regional Training Groups

The RYA British Youth Sailing (BYS) Regional Training Groups (RTG) are the RYA Performance programme of race training for Junior (U16) sailors in each region. Topper dinghies are one of the BYS recognised junior classes supported by the RTG programme. There are 6 regions in England as well as similar programmes in Scotland, Wales and Northern Ireland.

There is a selection and invitation procedure to be part of the RTG.

Many CVLSC young sailors have been selected for and benefited from this RTG training over the years.

Selection is based on completion of a range of events. For more information, check out the BYS page on the RYA website.

Topper Top Tips with Double Olympic Gold Medallist Shirley Robertson