Writing a piece entitled “From your Class Captain” sounds terribly snotty to me and not quite the friendly open organisation I know the Impala Class Association to be, but I couldn’t think of a more appropriate heading.

It is a privilege to take over from Rob Leggett who gave us sterling service during his term of office as Class Captain. Since 2009 when the Association and the Class were in dire straits – almost to the point of losing the Class Association and our One Design Status – we’ve come a long way and we’ve still much further to go.

There’s a new buzz about the Class as people realise you can have an awful lot of fun with an Impala for not a lot, in sailing terms, of money. Boats are changing hands swiftly and, even in the depths of recession, the buoyant market is seeing keen demand.

That demand is being stimulated by fleets growing in some areas. As with all classes, fleets move over time and, at present, consolidation is being seen on the South Coast and in the South West. Long may this growth continue!

In my term as Class Captain, I’d like to see more Impala owners joining the Class Association and this is gradually happening. I’d also like to see us hunt down the ‘missing’ Impalas – there must be at least 50 boats which have fallen off the Class radar over the years. Some, like the very sad looking Decoy, lie lost and neglected up creeks and back waters. Others must be sailing somewhere, perhaps under new names. With the demand for Impalas, I’m sure some of the lost and neglected boats might be brought back into use and into the Class.

The Class Association doesn’t run itself and during the coming months, the Committee will be looking for volunteers to help promote the Class both nationally and in regional hot spots. Please do get in touch if you’d be willing to help out in your area!

Speaking of the Committee, I’d like to take this opportunity to thank Ben Meakins and Kevin Palfreeman for the support they give to the Class. Ben, as you know, is our webmaster and has just been elected into the role of Rules Secretary. Kevin has the onerous job of Secretary running our administration.

Philip McDanell has just been elected to the Committee and he’s looking forward to helping promote the Class. We need more volunteers like Philip to come forward to help the Class to grow.

I’m looking forward to meeting members at the Nationals in July and would urge you to get your entry in swiftly. Numbers are expected to be into double figures so it’ll be a great event.

If you want to bring anything forward to the Committee, please contact me through jo (at) gapcomm.co.uk – it would be good to hear from you.

Good sailing in 2012


PS: The Membership Secretary/Treasurer says to remind you that 2012 memberships (£10.00 Sterling, €20.00) are now due. Click here for a membership renewal form.




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