A smaller fleet than usual presented themselves at the briefing on Saturday morning, (more on the size later) John Tushingham our PRO for the weekend called everyone together for a minutes silence for Her Majesty the Queen, and then went through the normal briefing notes and identified the course and potential hazards before sailing started promptly at 10.00am.
A northerly breeze and a bit of liquid Yorkshire sunshine kept most in their jackets for the early races, although shorts were still in view, mainly from those outside of Yorkshire. The race team set a simple windward leeward course with a good long beat and finish line at the top of the course. The wind direction created a walk from the launching pontoon (with new easy access steps) and the race course, but the single fleet and decision to hold a series of races back to back meant that there was plenty of racing and little lost time. The recent investments in the class was evident in the limited number of gear failures with only Roy Stevens really suffering as his winch suddenly decided to eat batteries, 3 races being his limit before a new set was required. Further investigation is needed on this, the blame was put on the winch but it could have been down to the swing rig and Gizmo, Roy will no doubt get to the bottom of it.
It was good to see that the fleet has a mix of designs and that these gave their skippers good racing, Damian was sailing his newly printed Peroni development hull, and a like an F1 test car it was without sponsors logo and coloured in primer grey for the shakedown but allowed John Taylor and Damian to evaluate progress before their next move.
Racing was competitive with boats evenly matched and finishing positions were mainly dependent on shifts, patience and a bit of luck but at the end of the 1st day Darin was pronounced the winner with Rob Vice and Tony Guerrier 2nd and 3rd. the gap from 2nd to 5th was only 10 points and the finishing order only decided in the last few races.
Day 1 result:
- Darin Ballington- 21pts
- Rob Vice-38pts
- Tony Guerrier- 43pts
- Duncan Ellis- 46pts
- Austin Guerrier- 48pts
- Martin Roberts-56pts
- Rob Wilson-77pts
- Roy Stevens-80pts
- Damian Ackroyd-110pts
After retiring to the pub for a evening of food and water (!) the fleet minus Martin reassembled for Ranking 4, Damian gave the sticks to John Taylor and racing, delayed by a lack of wind, commenced slightly after the scheduled time. Direction was now more South East and launching closer to the course. Duncan Ellis was the man to catch in the early light breeze with 4 bullets in the 1st five races. As with Saturday there were numerous winners and no one controlled the day. And like Saturday there were only a few short stoppages for boat tweaks and repairs. The club members did a sterling job in keeping racing flowing, moving marks as required and allowing the visitors access to their superb lake.
16 races were completed on both days giving everyone 3 discards each day.
All in all a great weekend and a fantastic advert for the class.
Day 2 Result:
- Darin Ballington-23pts
- Duncan Ellis-29pts
- Rob Vice-30pts
- Austin Guerrier-49pts
- Tony Guerrier-54pts
- Roy Stevens-60pts
- Rob Wilson-73pts
- John Taylor-95pts
Unfortunately the prize giving on Saturday was not recorded but below are the images for Sunday’s.
Thanks to John Tushingham, the race team and all the members of Keighley & District MES for allowing us to sail and making us very welcome. See you all next year….
Size of the fleet – Why?
Discussions were held over the reasons for the smaller fleet and the general consensus was that timing, planning of calendar and cost of travelling were the overriding reasons. As a class there is only so much we can do about some of these things but holding large MYA events on consecutive weekends increases costs and pressure on family time, and no doubt reduced the entries in this instance, something that we should avoid. This will be presented to the MYA as a point for discussion and will be considered by the class when looking at the calendar for 2023, however, ultimately there are only so many weekends in the season and clashes may be unavoidable so we need to make the class as welcoming and friendly as possible alongside the fantastic racing that our class brings.