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Norwich's Bryony sails into the new season

PUBLISHED: 12:30 14 May 2010 | UPDATED: 16:29 01 July 2010

Old Catton sailor, Bryony Bennett-Lloyd.

Old Catton sailor, Bryony Bennett-Lloyd.

Catton's Bryony Bennett-Lloyd brought home to Norfolk a great result at the Magic Marine Topper Inland National Championships this May bank holiday weekend at Grafham Water.

Catton's Bryony Bennett-Lloyd brought home to Norfolk a great result at the Magic Marine Topper Inland National Championships this May bank holiday weekend at Grafham Water.

From a large fleet of 255 entries, National Junior Squad sailor Bryony finished in 17th place overall and second female in difficult, gusty conditions.

While the sun shone on the Saturday there was only a fickle breeze, so despite getting on the water no races were held.

However, Sunday saw a complete change in the weather to a gusty 18-22mph north-easterly, with rain early on as well. By the third race only 93 sailors managed to finish. The wind continued to build, leaving the sailors physically pushed to the limit before the race officer sensibly decided to call it a day and abandoned the event after its fourth race. With no discards, 14-year-old Bryony's consistent high places paid off.

She said: “My winter training has helped enormously.

"Having the support and encouragement from Neil Pryde and SportsAid has made a big difference. This is a great start to the season.”

Overall, Norfolk was well represented with newcomers Poppy Woodcock, Catriona McIver, Thomas Needham, James, Jack Rushton and Joe Girling, as well as old hands James Patience, Simon Bennett and James Dugdale - the latter finishing ninth and first adult.

Bryony was handed a £500 grant by SportsAid at the start of March to help support her sailing career.

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