European Championships Day Four Report

Day 4, 24 July 2014, Races 8 and 9

Another superb set of races were held at Weymouth and Portland.
Again wind conditions dictated that Race 8 took place in the morning and Race 9 in the afternoon.  In hot weather the winds in Weymouth can shut off completely at midday and that is exactly what happened today. Between races, competitors were able to go ashore for a quick break and then get back on the water at 2pm for the second race. 57 boats took part in the first race and 52 in the second.
Race 8 started half an an hour earlier (at 10.30) to make the most of the sea breeze – a gentle north westerly ranging between 5 and 9 knots. There was no commercial shipping scheduled in Portland Harbour but a military helicopter training exercise was taking place during most of the race – evidently taking longer than its usual Thursday routine. (It was interesting to watch from the committee boat.)
There was a general recall and the race finally got away under the black flag at the second attempt. Unfortunately three boats were still over the line at the start and were disqualified.
Similar to yesterday, towards the end of the race it was necessary to move the marks as the wind was dropping. The lead boat finished in 73 minutes but 15 boats did not reach the finishing  line within the allocated time.
Will McGrath and Sam Woolner were the first to reach the first mark in Second Childhood III; Liam McGrath and Sue McGrath were second in Cloud Nine and Mark Lee and Jane Basset were third in Risky Business.
Race 8 winners were:
First: Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend in The Poacher
Second: Will McGrath and Sam Woolner in Second Childhood III
Third: Roger Challis and Mark Johnston in Revival
Race 9
By the afternoon the wind had changed to a steady south easterly direction, 7- 9 knots. These excellent conditions were unexpected and looked promising for a good race.
Once again there was a general recall.  Three boats were over the line at the second start and were disqualified. The wind kept up and the race was completed successfully.
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The first boat to reach the windward mark was Revival, helmed by Roger Challis and crewed by Mark Johnston; the second boat was The Poacher, helmed by Michael  McNamara and crewed by Simon Townsend; in third place was Arctic Fox, helmed by Steve Collins and crewed by Alex Cane.
Race 9 winners were:
First: Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend in The Poacher
Second:  Roger Challis and Mark Johnston in Revival
Third: Quentin Strauss and Sarah Burgess in Gorgeous Worgeous
All that remains to say is that sailing conditions were brilliant in Weymouth and Portland and competitors had a great day.