Looking back over the 2021 season invokes many fond memories, none greater than arriving in St Peter Port after completing the first offshore race for nearly 18 months. These days a Captain’s report without the mention of Covid is virtually impossible. For the last 2 years this has had a profound impact on our event planning, despite this, we have managed to find ways to still enjoy what gives us all so much pleasure and pain.

When our JOG founders first raced in the 50’s, I’m certain that they had other challenges just as great as our modern-day ones but with slightly different nuances. Fortunately, today, modern navigation and sailing advancements are available to all and not just the big budget corporates. Yacht racing has changed significantly in the 70 years that have preceded and, whilst respectful of our past, JOG has adapted to stay appealing and relevant to all age groups in these, very different, times.

Our committee has become more diverse with youth and gender equality, not just represented within committee, but part of the fabric of it. This is a key driver for me as Captain, to continue to transform with positive change sympathetic to our past but not hampered by it.

Your flag officers and committee represent you, the members and if you have suggestions or comments around the direction of our club, I strongly encourage you to contact me or a committee member and share your views. [email protected]

The Annual Awards evening was well attended this year and congratulations go to all the award winners. Photography from the event and the entire season is available on the website under the sections “About JOG, JOG in Pictures.

During the evening I reminded guests that JOG is run not to make a profit but for members to support our type of yacht racing. Youth is a crucial part of the future of our sport, and we launched the Generation JOG fund to support the development of youth within JOG. The fund has raised nearly £3,000 to date and the committee will be reporting back on the investments that are being made in this area. If you would like to contribute, you can do this online at https://myjog.jog.org.uk/fund-overview.

With the 2022 season soon upon us, now is the time to start planning. The 2022 programme is available online and our planning is well advanced for a great JOG week in August. Our race numbers continue to grow, and we urge you to spread the word about JOG to bring in more participants to our great formulae of competitive racing, destinations, and socials.

Part of your planning should consider the new keel inspection regulations introduced by World Sailing for offshore racing in 2022. JOG has always relied on World Sailing to set the standards for safety requirements and whilst we are concerned about the impact of the implementation of this new rule, we will work with members to help them adhere to it. We are updating information about this on the site in the coming weeks.

My predecessors warned me that not many people read the captain’s reports so if you have got this far, I take my sailing hat off to you.

Finally, I would like to wish you and your families a great Christmas break and I’m looking forward to seeing you all out on the water for the season opener, The Lonely Tower Race on Saturday 26th March.

Stuart Lawrence