Itchenor sailor to receive Royal Yachting Association award from The Princess Royal

Itchenor sailor Tony Lunch will receive a Royal Yachting Association award for his Oxford University sailing service.
Itchenor sailor Tony Lunch will receive a Royal Yachting Association award for his Oxford University sailing service.

An Itchenor sailor will be presented with one of the Royal Yachting Association’s most prestigious awards by The Princess Royal, president of the RYA, in recognition of his commitment to Oxford University Yacht Club.

Tony Lunch has been nominated for an RYA Lifetime Commitment Award by his club and has been selected as a winner by the RYA Honours and Awards Panel. He will receive his award at the organisation’s annual awards ceremony in London on November 16.

Lunch has been a stalwart of Oxford University YC for more than 50 years, both as a student and alumnus of the university. He served as commodore, vice president and president, a post he held for 19 years, before retiring from the committee in February 2018, providing a strong continuity to the club where the members change every three to four years.

As a life member, he provides financial and logistical support to the students, ensuring donations have been used appropriately to purchase boats and support student sailing.

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A passionate and engaged supporter, he has organised varsity matches, hosted training events, facilitated participation in Cowes Week and raised the international profile of Oxford University YC through an exchange programme with students in Japan.

With his infectious enthusiasm, Lunch has ensured Oxford University YC remains the home for all Oxford sailors, irrespective of their discipline or experience within the sport. His commitment to the club has been total and spans every aspect of club activity and life.

He said of his nomination: “I am extremely pleased to have been nominated and regard the award as a great honour and totally unexpected.

“To help and encourage youth sailing is a particular privilege and I have had enormous enjoyment from sailing, both in dinghies and keelboats over many years.”