Apologies, but I forgot to update the overall results after both the Nationals and then the final two events at Eastbourne. The planned series had eleven events, although Watermead was lost due to lack of entries. So 10 events and 6 to count for the series. Congratulations to our series winner this year Tobi Laux sailing his own Ivy design.
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Rounds 8 and 9 of the 2023 were held at Eastbourne over the weekend of 7th & 8th of October. Two contrasting days sailing as indicated in the attached report from Race Officer Peter Kemp.
It was probably one of the best weekends of weather at Eastbourne this year, especially for October. A highly competitive fleet of nine boats enthralled spectators over the two days, with over thirty races completed. Tobias Laux won each day, with Sunday being another ‘first’ with all first positions to count after discards! Well done, Tobi!
Entry: There were nine entrants each day, most of whom were registered before Saturday. Competitors came from many clubs across the south of the country.
Weather: Saturday’s forecast was very accurate, starting and finishing with a predominately south westerly force 3 to 5, needing skilled sailing as well as good tactics. 18 races were completed without protests and plenty of time for rig changes and repairs!
Sunday, as forecast, had no wind to start with, but just after an hour’s delay, a decent sea breeze filled in and stayed through to four o’clock. Foregoing lunch another 18 races were completed.
Many thanks go to Jes Collier on Saturday and Dave Allinson on Sunday for moving marks and resetting the course as needed, making the races challenging and enjoyable.
Scoring: No heats were necessary over the two days. Our ‘Racemaster’ race control system, ensured that race results were 100% accurate. Our thanks go to Mike Parris for creating the system.
Protests: No protests were lodged. Thanks go to the club’s race team of starters, finishers and observers; John Crix, Tony Marshall, Rob Ahier, Dave Allinson, Scott Pearce and Rob Shepperd.
Social: The club team provided hot and cold drinks at the waterside, with an après sail beer later back in the clubhouse.
A video of Sundays racing was taken by club member Terry Connell and is available on Youtube:
Day 2 dawned with 14 knots from a SSE direction with a forecast set to move this to a Southerly and increase in strength at some point during the morning to be 20 knots with gusts of up to 30. At least it was mild in the breeze and there was only a small amount of rain most of it falling during an early lunch break. Course changes were also minimal as the breeze probably only changed in direction by 20 degrees and so all racing could be conducted from the good vantage point of the promenade.
Graham Elliott (Electronica) continued where he left off after the first day and had a dominating day winning 9 of the 15 races sailed. There were4 race wins for Victor Izquierdo (Ivy), plus one each for Rohan Williams (Uno) and Bill Culshaw (Ivy). Tobias Laux (Ivy) also had a very consistent day, but without a win to his name.
Unfortunately the combined effects of the strong winds, leaking boats with salt water led to a good number of retirements from racing during the day, so that having started the day with a potential 12 boats racing, by the end there were only 6 boats in each of the last 4 races.
The final result gave the Championship to Graham in first, well ahead of Victor in second who narrowly beat Tobias into third place. Full results are below along with pictures of the podium sailors.
Photos from both days of the event are available on the Birkenhead Flikr Album HERE
A video of Race 10 was taken by Birkenhead member John Beech is available on Youtube here
It was a tricky day at West Kirby for both the sailors and Race Officer. After setting up a proposed Course prior to the briefing the wind had swung through nerly 90 degrees during the briefing and so had to be reset and caused a 20 minute delay to the start of racing. As the day progressed, the 6 to 12 knot wind kept the Race Officer and his mark laying team on their toes with changes or potential changes after every few races even up to the final Race (16) which was completed by 18:00hrs. The day was rounded out with Graham Elliott sailing an Electronica leading the event, with Spaniard Victor Izquierdo sailing an Ivy in second and Tobias Laux also sailing an Ivy in third.
A great turnout of 19 skippers arrived at Bournville for the event. Two fleets were the order of the day, particularly as the wind was forecast to increase and generate some lively conditions. A westerly prevailed for the day, but it was anything but steady. Much frustration was evident as skippers made changes from 1st to 2nd rigs and back again whilst the wind strength rose and fell to contradict the skippers’ efforts. There were two instances of de-masting and various other strength testing happenings. Repairs were skilfully implemented under pressure of time to resume sailing and get those much sought after points.
Most skippers found themselves in A fleet and then B fleet at various times, and it was not all one way for the top five.
Good sportsmanship was displayed by everyone with all contacts being resolved with penalty turns completed quickly. In all, the RG65 class provided some fast and close quarter action which all enjoyed taking part in.
Huge thank you to Datchet for hosting the class over the two days and looking forward to further TT events later in the year.