Wayfarer International Championships at Greystones Sailing Club – Preview
Who knows? I might conceivably bump into Saoirse Ronan (highly unlikely) or Reggie Corrigan (unlikely) while I’m in Greystones later this month I might visit a few cafes (likely) or bars (highly likely). (Un)fortunately I’m going to miss out on Westlife at the Whale Theatre (screened live from Croke Park) but I might catch Amelie the following day. I am going to go sailing (most definitely) and catch up with some old friends and hopefully make some new ones.
Where is Greystones and why am I going there? Greystones is a small town (but the second largest in Co Wicklow) squeezed between the Wicklow Mountains to the West and the Irish Sea to the East and lies to the south of Bray Head; a few miles north lies Dublin’s fair city. Between the 20th and 26th July 2019 Greystones SC will play host to the the biggest bonanza of Wayfarer sailing in 2019. The event trebles as the Wayfarer International Championships, the UK National Championships and the Irish National Championships, attracting competitors from Canada, the USA, Denmark, the UK, the Netherlands and South Africa, as well as Ireland.
With so many race courses (Punchestown, Leopardstown and the Curragh) just a canter away, a look at the runners and riders seems appropriate.
The much anticipated renewed competition will be between joint favourites Mogens Just & Anders Friis from Denmark (Olympians and reigning International Champions) and Michael McNamara & Simon Townsend from the UK (reigning European and UK National Champions, multiple International Champions….but runners up to Mogens & Anders in 2016 in the Netherlands). Their most recent races have been very close and they often seem to be a class apart. Don’t expect this to be a two horse race however.
From mainland UK, Andrew and Tom Wilson, who have won several of the National Circuit Series events in the last few seasons will be ones to watch especially when the going is hard as will Bill Whitney and John Shelton. Keep an eye out also for Brian Lamb and Sam Pygall and, if the going is soft to very soft, Richard Stone and Catherine Gore.
From Denmark do not discount Neils Alslev and Anders Pjetursson if the going is hard, Meike Fomsgaard and her crew if the going is soft nor Stefan Nandrup-Bus and Hans Hansen or Christian and Jorgen Iversen, all of whom raced well at the European Championships in Denmark in 2018 and may creep up on the rails to trouble the leaders. Also, there may be a late entry from former Wayfarer International Champion Peter Boje, who is happily returning to fitness after going lame shortly after the last International Championships in 2016 where he joined Mac and Mogens in the winners enclosure.
From the host Club and Country, we must not forget Monica Schaefer and Miriam McCarthy, reigning Irish Champions and also race winners at the International Championships a few years ago. Also from Ireland, do not be surprised if Margaret Hynes and Mike Hayes and Norman Lee (former GP14 Champion) and Barry Keogh have a good race.
And from the other side of the pond Rob Wierdsma (CWA Chair) is back, with Samantha as crew, hoping to improve on his Gold fleet performance in Holland. Leo and Joanne van Kampen were at the top end of Silver fleet in Holland and as recent runners up at the 2019 Canadian National Championships will be hoping their form continues to improve. Jim Heffernan (Wayfarer International Secretary) and Mark Heffernan will be representing USA and again hoping to improve on their top-end Silver fleet placing from 2016.
I would expect the race winners and the podium overall to come from the competitors listed above but there a dozen or more other teams who are capable of getting good results in individual races if their stars are aligned. Whether or not they would be consistent enough to challenge the podium remains the burning question which is why they form part of the amorphous group known as “100-1 bar”.
The field is large and not just made up of the thoroughbreds. There will be some old nags too, some of them carrying additional weight, even though they insist they’ve been on the gallops recently! As is the custom these days the field will be split into Gold, Silver and Bronze divisions (all racing as one fleet) and for the Bronze division there will be the option of cruising for a day or two. The organisers also plan to create a buddy system where a top boat is paired up with a less experienced team to share experiences and knowledge (hopefully to the benefit of both).
It won’t all be racing. A social programme is organised and there will be time to enjoys some of the attractions the Greystones area has to offer. Aside from the cafes, bars and the Theatre, there are lovely walks, cycle rides and, I mustn’t forget, golf with a plethora of excellent courses nearby including Druids Glen (the “Augusta of Ireland”). I can almost guarantee that one team may forget an important bit of equipment for their sailing (“now, where did I put the boat?”)….but won’t forget their golf clubs.
As always, the organising authority has been putting a huge amount of time into planning the event supported by its many sponsors, including Allen Brothers, Hartley Boats, and Craftinsure from the sailing world and also by Irish Ferries, Watermark (Coffee Technology) and The Beach House, Greystones. Fingers crossed that the weather is kind, that the racing is hard but fair and that the craic will be memorable too.
Nipegegi Round Britain 2019
Just a quick one, for those of you that haven’t totally OD’d on Nipegegi Round Britain yet, to say that Rich and I are on an action sports podcast called Mpora (Episode 5) that came out yesterday, we’re on between 17mins and 42mins, see link below:
and last night I’was a guest on Kelly Morgan’s sports show “Lets get physical” for BBC radio Wiltshire, apparently I’ll be on between 2000hrs and 2100hrs.
Classic & Vintage Dinghy Racing Assoc. 20th Anniversary Rally & National Championship Roadford Lake Devon
Roadford Lake Sailing Club, Goodacre Farm, Broadwoodwidger, Lifton, Devon, PL16 0JL
The attachments will outline the basic information which will be updated nearer the date on the CVRDA website https://www.cvrda.org or our webpage Classic and Vintage Racing Dinghy Association (CVRDA) or the poster website address http://www.bit.ly/cvrda2019nats
You do not need to be a member to take part – just have a qualifying boat
Alan Williams joint organiser CVRDA Roadford Rally & Nats
Nipegegi Round Britain – We made it!
You no doubt already know, however, just in case, we made it! We crossed our track in the mouth of Salcombe on Sunday at 18:42pm, completing our non-stop and unassisted circumnavigation of mainland Britain in 15 days and 4 hours. The whole team are all still recovering from the trip itself, as well as washing, demobilising equipment, and coping with the whirlwind of media requests at my parents’ property here in South Devon. ...read more
We are all in shock here, not only to have actually completed this project, which had such a high chance of failure, but also by the reception we received back in Salcombe, with over 15 boats coming out to escort us back, including a new and vintage RNLI boat, Salcombe Harbour boats, and Salcombe Yacht Club boats. There were banners and signs strewn up on buildings with Nipe’s name and sail number and a big group of people waiting on the jetty with drinks reception and full media presence, with us giving video and radio interviews within seconds of stepping on to terra firma; crazy transition into the real world but we figured it would be as famous as were going to get, so we made the most of it.
As you can imagine there’s a huge sense of pride in the wider Hodshon family too, with Nipegegi still breaking sailing records, now including outright fasted dinghy around Britain (both in monohull and multihull classes), completing the first ever non-stop and unassisted circumnavigation of mainland Britain, and breaking the dinghy monohull 24hr distance record, and all these some 40 years after her last National Championship win by Dad in the late 70’s – go Nipe, you legend!
Furthermore we are so pleased that she managed this highly demanding sail without being modified, so, miraculously, she is still in class and could compete in a national or world championships tomorrow if somebody had the energy to do so – I think a real accolade to the Wayfarer and Ian Proctor’s robust and timeless boat design.
We can’t thank everyone enough for all your support. So many people have helped in so many ways, the list is endless and I can’t wait to have a bit more time to catch up and thank each of you personally As well as all the Hodshon family of course I’d like to give particular thanks to my cousin Ben Davies who worked really hard into the early hours with Suzanne while we were at sea, to bring onboard our headline partner, Pure Ionic Water, a product of WET Group, alongside charity Water Smart Foundation (WSF) who stepped in at a crucial moment in the project and whose generous support of the expedition costs was an essential component in the project’s success. The WSF charity has committed to raising £10,000 in donations, which will be split between our two other causes, the RNLI and Surfers Against Sewage. Our current total is £5633!!
We have been inundated with requests to give presentations on our experience, which is fantastic, so over the next few weeks we will endeavour to complete our log, collate the pictures and videos, and put together an entertaining and informative presentation to share. Unbelievably there is already a tour schedule forming (ahhh) that Suzanne is putting together, covering the country, so if you’re close to one of the locations and would be interested to see a few pics and hear a few stories, feel free to come and join us, we’ll share the calendar when it’s firmed up a bit more.
Well, what a journey; as Rich said during one of the more testing times of our trip, “there should be a law against executing a plan made in pub”, but then perhaps that’s where all the best plans are made! Thinking back to all that prep, working on the boat, electrics, navigation, food, water-making, clothing, destructive testing etc., etc., it was such a huge all-consuming undertaking for 18 months, but on reflection everything worked and nothing broke, despite experiencing near gale force winds and scary waves up to 60NM offshore on three separate occasions. I feel we’ve all been rewarded for our hard work and a great lesson for the kids and us all perhaps.
Really glad to be back, the boat and equipment are all dried and packed away now and the four of us Hodshons are about to head off in the NRB tour bus for a few days camping and unwinding together before going back to work next week.
P.S. – Here is a summary from our post-arrival press release:
The unassisted, non-stop attempt, was completed in just 15 days and 4 hours, with the aim of raising awareness about microplastics in the oceans. The pair set sail from Salcombe, Devon on 15th June and completed the 1390 nautical mile journey this morning.
The two intrepid adventurers completed the voyage using a lovingly refurbished 60 year old, 16ft long open sailing dinghy and family heirloom named the Nipegegi (more info on the history of this included).
The record attempt was supported by the charity Water Smart Foundation, which raises awareness and aims to tackle microplastics in the sea and drinking water, and who have committed to helping raise £10,000, to be split equally between two ocean-minded charities, the RNLI and Surfers Against Sewage.
Keith Tredwen Proctor 16th December 1945 – 1st July 2019
Keith Tredwen Proctor 16th December 1945 – 1st July 2019
It is with great sadness that we announce the passing of Keith. He died on Monday evening at Derriford Hospital in Plymouth. Some of you will know that Keith had been suffering from Parkinson’s Disease for the last 7 years, and in the last 2 years it had become ever more debilitating.
On Saturday morning he suffered a series of heart attacks that left him in a very weakened state, this meant that he never regained consciousness. We are pleased to say that his passing was very peaceful, and many members of his immediate family were with him over the weekend....read more
It is also fortuitous to be able to say that Keith had been visited by several close family members and grandchildren in the few days leading up to his heart attack, which was great fun and clearly gave him a lot of pleasure.
Keith is survived by Val his wife and Mark, Chris and Sarah his children. They are all bearing up well, with a lot of tears but also many laughs as they reminisce. It is at times like this that the Proctor, Davies, Wallsgrove and Robertson clans greatly appreciate the blessings of an incredibly supportive wide circle of family and friends.
Keith was a very committed Christian, and his faith always guided his thoughts and actions. He found the aggressive nature of Parkinson’s very challenging, but his faith and family gave him huge comfort throughout.
He was a gentleman and a ‘gentle’ man. Also charming and polite, he put others at their ease and was always attentive and engaged, making them feel listened to. Hence why his work helping others less fortunate, whether at his church or elsewhere, was so supportive and effective. In a world where it is all too easy to criticise others he would always stand back, and often just ask the question as to whether perhaps the person being criticised had some sadness in their life at that time, and perhaps just needed support. This typical generosity of spirit meant that he was thoughtful and also great fun. Always ready to laugh and have family adventures, whether on Dartmoor or the River Dart, which he loved.
Keith was a modest man. He was an accomplished and highly respected architect, winning several design awards. Not only did he have the vision to create many new buildings that were sympathetic to their environment, but he also saved countless old buildings and brought them back from the brink of destruction to deliver new purpose and life, giving many families and disadvantaged people new homes and great pleasure so that they could build their lives together. He could see hope and purpose in what many others condemned as an eyesore. We are blessed that so many of these buildings are in south Devon adding greatly to the common good, so we are surrounded by his incredible legacy every day.
Keith was also an accomplished sailor and a former national champion of several classes. He was heavily involved in the design of the Wanderer and various marks of the Wayfarer working alongside our father, Ian Proctor. As with all of the Proctor children he was the ‘test pilot’ for many famous designs such as the Wayfarer, Wanderer, Topper, Tempest, Kestrel, Minisail, Minisprint, Gull, National 12s, Merlin Rockets, the list goes on, during the 1950s, 60s and early 70s.
If you would like, instead of flowers, please could you make a donation to Devon Air Ambulance Trust, either by retiring collection at the church or sent in Keith’s name to Allwood of Totnes at Station Road, Totnes, Devon, TQ9 5LF Tel: 01803 862050.
Devon Air Ambulance like everyone else at the NHS, were amazing and wonderful throughout.
Wayfarer Southern Area Championship at Shoreham SC – report by Tim Townsend
The Craftinsure Wayfarer National Circuit and Travellers Series resumed after a four week break with the Southern Area Championship hosted by Shoreham Sailing Club. ...read more
The sailing environment could not have been more different to the last event at Medway YC. There we had light winds and tricky tidal river conditions. At Shoreham the forecast promised force 4-5 winds on Saturday (with showers) and a little more wind on Sunday (with more rain). In spite of the less than awesome forecast the camper vans descended in West Sussex along with a couple of tents ready to take on the elements.
Sailing legend Alan Warren was the race officer who, with his team, put on good racing on both days. The committee boat appeared to be a singularly bouncy platform from which to run the racing so it was a tough task well done. The schedule was to have three races on Saturday and three on Sunday with one discard after the 5th race. The race course on both days was a triangle/sausage over four rounds.
The pattern was set during the first race on Saturday. Andrew and Tom Wilson from Datchet Water SC led at the first mark with Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend (Rollesby Broad SC) and Bill Whitney and John Shelton (Shoreham SC) following behind in close formation. The rest of the fleet rounded the mark a short but respectful distance further back. A tight three sail reach across the waves was followed by a gybe and a slightly broader reach with the waves to the leeward mark by which time McNamara/Townsend had gained a small lead they would not relinquish for the rest of the race. Meanwhile, over the 45-50 minute race, Whitney/Shelton ground down the Wilsons to take the runners up spot. Best of the rest were the McKenzies from Medway YC after a close battle with their clubmates, the Townsends.
The second race on Saturday saw the Townsends join the leading three boats for the first lap. Although the wind had not diminished the fleet as a whole was getting braver with most of the boats flying spinnakers on the second reach and run and several also flying the spinnaker on the first reach with varying degrees of success. As the race progressed, the front runners got away from the rest of the fleet again. This time McNamara/Townsend won from the Wilsons. Whitney/Shelton got the better of the Townsends who in turn beat the McKenzies and Brian Lamb and Sue Risbridger from Wilsonian SC.
The third race was sailed in a marginally softer breeze; but it was still hard work. In this race McNamara/Townsend led from the start and finished with a fairly comfortable lead. The Wilsons and Whitney/Shelton had a race long battle and traded places a few times. The Wilsons got the nod at the finish. A little further back, the Townsends again finished ahead of Lamb/Risbridger and the McKenzies.
The overnight standings saw the lead held by McNamara/Townsend followed by the Wilsons and Whitney/Shelton. However points were close and with three more races scheduled for Sunday things could change.
As we packed our boats away it started to rain heavily. Some tents were pitched. Other tents stayed in the car and hotels were found instead. All the competitors enjoyed a chilli at the club with the National 12 sailors who were sharing the open meeting.
Sunday morning dawned damp and uninviting. The wind had also increased a notch or maybe two, and there was quite a sea running with waves increasing as the tide turned. After a bit of umming and ahing (and sheltering from a rain squall under the club verandah) the Wayfarer fleet launched without exceptions. The Townsends were the first to return to the harbour to effect a repair to their forestay. There was no delay in the racing however so they started late and with their fourth place in the overall standings in jeopardy. They were in the perfect place, however, for a grandstand view (through the rain) of the race long battle for the lead between McNamara/Townsend and Whitney/Shelton. These two swapped the lead several times during the race and as they flew down the final run with their spinnakers it was Whitney/Shelton who held a narrow lead. However, McNamara/Townsend got the advantage at the final gybe/take down and won the race by just three seconds, the slimmest of margins. The Wilsons held a comfortable third in this race.
And what of the Townsends and the battle for fourth place overall? Had their temporary return to shore undone Saturday’s hard work? Had the McKenzies or Lamb/Risbridger taken advantage of their misfortune? Finishing behind the Wilsons in fourth place in this race were Chas and Mandy Hammond from Shoreham SC; fifth place was taken by Mike Weighill and Carl Martin from Swarkestone SC. The Townsends, in turn, had managed to overtake a couple of the boats which had swum in the tide, and they finished ninth. Still, that could be a discard if another race was completed.
However, the sailing conditions were now quite troublesome. Some quite strong squalls were adding to an already formidable wind and the wind-against-tide conditions were creating a lumpy and difficult sea. A number of boats headed for the harbour and the race team abandoned the rest of the day’s racing.
Back at the club the numbers were crunched. McNamara/Townsend with four race wins were the clear victors and took home all the silverware; although they had to work hard for their success. The Wilsons and Whitney/Shelton were on equal points and identical results but the latter were runners up by virtue of having the better result in the last race.
Further back, the Townsends and the McKenzies also shared equal points but this time the tie was broken by the Townsend’s two 4th place results on Saturday. Lamb/Risbridger finished in sixth place overall. The sponsors prizes of a Craftinsure branded towel were won by Michael Dillistone and Andrew Criswick from Castle Cove SC and Nigel and Belinda O’Donnell from Swarkestone SC.
Michael McNamara took the opportunity to thank the organising club for their hospitality and the race team and support crews for the excellent race management in testing conditions.
The next event in the Craftinsure National Circuit and Travellers Series is the class National Championships which will be held from 20-26 July at Greystones SC, Co Wicklow, Ireland, as part of the International Championships. Over 60 boats have entered the event, where sponsors include Craftinsure, Hartley Boats and Allen Brothers.
P.S. – you can view low resolution versions of these and other photos taken by Warwick Pics at Shoreham, and potentially order prints, via this link.
(This report complete with full results table may be found on the Racing Results page)
Classic & Vintage Dinghy Assoc. 20th Anniversary Rally & National Championship Roadford Lake Devon
Please would you draw your members attention to the above event.
The attachments will outline the basic information which will be updated nearer the date on the CVRDA website https://www.cvrda.org or our webpage http://www.facebook.com/groups/cvrda or the poster website address http://www.bit.ly/cvrda2019nats
You Do Not Need to Be a Member to take part – just have a qualifying boat
Regards Alan Williams – joint organiser CVRDA Roadford Rally & Nats
PS camping is available at Roadford lake details are available at cvrda.org or contact https://www.southwestlakes.co.uk search for camping Roadford
Wayfarer Southerns overall
After a bit of umming and ahing all the Wayfarers went out to race. The O’Donnells went swimming as did Paul Hughes and Tracey Villa. Mac/Townsend and Whitney/Shelton has an epic battle decided only on the last gybe and short beat to the finish line. The Wilsons were 3rd. As the wind and waves continued to build the race team decided to call it a day.
So just the four races. All to count. Mac/Townsend won them all but were made to fight very hard in each race.
1st Michael Mcnamara/Simon Townsend
2nd Bill Whitney/John Shelton
3rd Andrew/Tom Wilson
4th Tim/Jacqueline Townsend
5th Brian/Liz McKenzie
6th Brian Lamb/Sue Risbridger
Day 1 Southern Championships at Shoreham SC.
The wind was softer than expected but three races was still hard work. The sun shone for the briefing but not for the racing. The tide was out when we came ashore. Loads of mud. We did three triangle/sausage races of four rounds. Andrew and Tom Wilson led at the first windward mark but that was the only time Mac and Simon Townsend were headed all day. Three wins for them. Lovely three sail reaches.
Overall at the end of day 1:
2nd, Andrew/Tom Wilson
3rd, Bill Whitney/John Shelton
4th, Tim/Jacqueline Townsend
5th, Brian/Liz McKenzie
6th, Brian Lamb/Sue Risbridger.
Wayfarer Southern Championships at Shoreham Sailing Club – Preview by Tim Townsend
It seems highly unlikely that the famous Shoreham Redoubt will be manned this coming weekend in an attempt to rebuff invading Wayfarer sailors who will be visiting to compete in the Wayfarer Southern Championships and Event 4 of the Craftinsure National Circuit and Travellers Series 2019. On the contrary, local Wayfarers will welcome their visitors while, at the same time, hoping to rout them on their home waters. ...read more
After three events in the Travellers Series, Andrew and Tom Wilson from Datchet SC are the leaders followed closely by Brian Lamb and Sam Pygall representing Wilsonian SC/Medway YC. The winners of all three events this year will be competing at Shoreham; Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend who won the Inland Championships at the beginning of April, Brian and Sam who won the open meeting at west Oxfordshire SC and Guy Marks and Mel Titmus from Bough Beech SC who won the Eastern Championships a month ago.
The home fleet will be led by Bill Whitney and John Shelton who finished 5th at the Eastern Championships and by Peter Bennett and his crew, Philip Ayton. Other notable visiting teams will include Nigel and Belinda O’Donnell from Swarkestone SC, who lie third overall in the Travellers Series and Mike Weighill (UKWA’s Most-Improved-Helm 2019) and his long suffering crew, Carl Martin, also from Swarkestone who finished as runners up at West Oxfordshire in April.
From Medway YC the fleet will be joined by Brian and Liz McKenzie who finished in sixth place and second UK crew at last year’s European Championships in Denmark, and by Tim and Jacqueline Townsend who don’t get out much and have no recent notable performances to their name, other than a penchant for starting at the pin end of the start line and occasionally sinking the pin! Other visiting teams from Arun YC and Castle Cove SC are expected.
I’m sorry to have to report some likely absentees; Mark and Jane Lee (golfing, I presume….poor excuse) and the class wuss-of-the-week Richard Stone (third at the light-wind Eastern Championships) who has allegedly decided that a forecast of a healthy force 4 is too windy for him, much to the disgust of his crew, Catherine Gore, who says that even if sailing is cancelled she’s happy to walk the first few miles of The Monarch’s Way (great attitude…..more Tigger than Eeyore). David Roberts has maintained a radio silence on his whereabouts this weekend, as has John Clementson, who presumably is still recovering from placing fifth overall at the recent Three Rivers Race on the Norfolk Broads.
The Wayfarers are sharing the event with the National 12s. If anybody wants to join us there is camping available and a chilli supper on Saturday night. More details can be found at here.
UK Wayfarer Association Neil Rushton Trophy
The UK Wayfarer Association are proud to announce the winner of the Neil Rushton Trophy 2019. Actually, it’s a prize awarded at the Wayfarer Class AGM in March each year and is given to the helm who improved most during the previous calendar year. The award is in the gift of the UKWA Racing Secretary so for this year’s Wayfarer helms who would like to get noticed by the Racing Secretary for all the right reasons and be in the running for the award in 2020, just what do they need to do? ...read more
Study the image. This is a photo of the 2019 winner. For convenience, let’s call him Mike. What did Mike do in 2018 which made him a winner? Was it the fact that he secured his best ever performance at the National Championships? Was it the fact that he travelled to most of the Craftinsure National Circuit events and stood on the podium at a couple of them? Did he buy the Racing Secretary a cup of tea or a beer? Well, all of the above, obviously, but there were some extra aspects of Mike’s performance which made him stand above the crowd in 2018. What were these? Observe the following:
- The almost upright boat as it planes towards the camera. So much quicker than the almost horizontal;
- The classic high elbow position on the sheet hand, demonstrating the quick trim to promote the plane;
- The short haircut – no stray tendrils to obstruct the ears and interfere with balance or wind sense;
- The calm and regular breathing – a man at the peak of his fitness (and possibly too athletic to race a Wayfarer!);
- The highly polished hull in royal blue which perfectly reflects the bow wave in the late afternoon sun;
- The inscrutable look. Mike is obviously aware of the photographer but is careful not to show it behind his polarised sunglasses and underneath his peaked cap;
- The enigmatic look also hides Mike’s innermost thoughts, his plans for next season which doubtless will involve more boat bling designed to shave a nano-second off manoeuvres. These might include twin spinnaker poles and more elastic under the foredeck than a Merlin Rocket;
- The lips, cleverly closed to avoid swallowing the worst of the spray and waves not blocked by the crew (for convenience, let’s call the crew Carl, although other crew names (and, indeed, crew) are available);
- The overlength tiller extension enabling Mike to control the rudder from all conceivable positions, even from the centreboard;
- Not visible in the photo but patently present on the boat, literally metres of trim strips measuring genoa sheet tension, barber position, main sheet tension, rig tension, vang tension, outhaul, cunningham, pole height, the length of the infinitely adjustable bridle and the angle of dangle of the centreboard;
- The extra special trim strip to measure crew position (“No, Carl, I said sit this gust out to a 9, not a 7, flat is fast remember. Your knees should be a further 20mm outside the boat”);
- And is this the key to winning the most improved helm trophy? The most-long-suffering crew. Note how hard Carl is working. His left hand is carefully checking rig tension (NOT, I repeat NOT just supporting his weight) while his right is continuously trimming and re-trimming the genoa with extraordinary subtlety. His gaze is fixed upon the telltales not the photographer. His mouth is slightly ajar and his face contorted by his efforts as he waits for the inevitable collision with the approaching bow wave. His physio, who he sees every Monday, might have something to say about Carl’s bent leg hiking style but he is giving it every ounce of energy he possesses. Tragically, there is no Association trophy for the most improved crew each year, but Carl is content to quietly reflect in Mike’s glory while he loyally puts in the hard yards on his helm’s behalf. Such is the lot of the crew of every successful helm. And while Mike collects his prizes Carl will buy the tea and unrig the boat ready for the long journey home.
So, Wayfarer helms who want to be like Mike, to improve and be in the running to win the Neil Rushton Trophy in 2020 this is the message from the UKWA Racing Secretary: “get fit, get flat, be cool, be shiny, measure and record everything that moves and above all make your crew suffer.”
UKWA Disclaimer: Any views expressed in this article are the unconsidered, unreconstructed, half baked ideas of the Racing Secretary alone based entirely upon an all too brief examination of the photograph and not upon any other hard evidence or research and do not in any way represent the views of the UK Wayfarer Association Executive Committee or Association members. The UKWA acknowledges that there is no I in TEAM and that all successful Wayfarer teams are an equal partnership regardless of who buys the tea or provides the motorhome and even though there isn’t an annual prize for the most improved crew.
Wayfarer Southerns at Shoreham SC 15/16 June
Eastern Area Championship at Medway YC – Report by Tim Townsend
It was inevitable that the Wayfarer Eastern Area Championship, which also counted as Event #3 in the Craftinsure National Circuit and Travellers Series, would provide a very different challenge to the two fresh water, non tidal, open meetings that had gone before as competitors looked forward to strong tides and the forecast light to moderate winds on the River Medway.
There were 22 entries for the Easterns with most of the main protagonists present. The forecast overnight was for very light conditions on Saturday with slightly stronger breezes expected on Sunday. This, combined with Spring tides, would make interesting and difficult conditions for the competitors and race team alike. ...read more
Saturday dawned bright and virtually windless. The skippers briefing was held and all the usual information was imparted along with the decision to postpone for an hour. A reconvened briefing extended the postponement for another 60 minutes. All this time the RO was venturing downriver to look for wind which would be strong and stable enough to race. At the third time of asking all systems were go and the fleet headed for Gillingham Reach where the race team set a windward/leeward course off the Hoo Island shore in 5-7 knots of Easterly wind. By now the tide had turned so the beats with the ebb tide under the racing boats were short and the runs were long. Two races were held in this part of the river both won by Guy Marks and Mel Titmus (Bough Beech SC) going away. Runners up in the first race were Richard Stone and Catherine Gore (Medway YC) who took a liking to the conditions while third was John Goudie and Sam Boniface (Wilsonian SC). Runners up in the second race were Bill Whitney and John Shelton (Shoreham YC) while the podium was rounded off by Mark and Jane Lee (Medway YC) who were having a good day near the front of the fleet. The racing was very close with good starts at a premium. Surprisingly, rule observance was good at the windward mark but not so admirable as boats rafted up at the end of the uptide running legs. Those who could get away in clear air from these melees were at a considerable advantage.
In truth the second race was a short one because the river was draining rapidly and the leeward end of the start line was nearly ashore, so the race team relocated to the upriver end of Gillingham Reach, setting a start line off Gillingham Marina with a very short beat to the windward mark and a longer run and beat back to the start line for two laps. This third race was also won comfortably by Guy and Mel. Brian Lamb and Sam Pygall (Wilsonian SC/Medway YC) started to make their charge and finished second in this race with Bill and John coming third.
Comfortable overnight leaders were Guy and Mel. Bill and John were lying second while Andrew and Tom Wilson (Datchet Water SC) lay third through consistent, if not for them stellar, results.
Back at the Club the fleet was greeted with free beer and rock cakes while competitors discussed the highs and lows of their day. Later, there was a champagne reception and an excellent dinner. MYC Commodore, Mark Penny, celebrated his highest ever placing in an open meeting (5th in race three, and didn’t he not let us forget it…..well done Mark and Gail) by setting one of his traditional quizzes. No quiz rounds on Kent this year (visitors from Derbyshire breathed a sigh of relief) but strangely there was a round on body parts with one of the tables made up almost entirely of medics!
Sunday’s wind forecast was a bit more promising but we woke to fog, a gentle Irish mist, and no wind. Another postponement was signalled. However on this occasion the wind started to fill in after a short time and the fleet headed off to Pinup Reach for three more races in winds that topped out at perhaps 8-10 knots. The race team set triangle/sausage courses in a North Easterly which clocked right during the late morning requiring a significant reset between races. Once again three races were completed with some incredibly close racing especially at mark roundings.
What a difference a day makes. Race 4 began with Guy and Mel flying off the start line like a roasted stoat. They led for the first lap but then over stood the windward mark allowing through first Stewart and Catriona Coltart (Medway YC) and then Brian and Sam and Richard and Catherine who finished in that order. Meanwhile, ante post favourites Andrew and Tom uncharacteristically finished seventh dropping them off the podium overall.
Andrew and Tom must have given each other a half time talking to because in probably the best wind of the weekend they shot off the start line in race 5 never to be headed. John and Sam collected their second podium of the weekend by finishing the race as clear runners up while Richard and Catherine continued their fine form in third. Meanwhile Guy and Mel had their worst race of the weekend to date finishing in 6th place. Was there going to be a twist in the tale of this event.
The final race of the weekend saw Guy and Mel winning the pin with Andrew and Tom a couple of boats above them. Andrew and Tom led at the first windward mark with Richard and Catherine close behind. Guy and Mel were in a battle for third with Stewart and Catriona and Brian and Sam. Andrew and Tom and Richard and Catherine had a race long battle but the Wilsons just took the gun for their second win of the day. Richard and Catherine were close runners up with Guy and Mel a short distance behind in third.
Overall, Guy and Mel held on to become the Wayfarer Eastern Area Champions 2019. By winning the final race Andrew and Tom pipped Richard and Catherine for the runners up spot.
Between them, Guy and the Medway YC Wayfarer Class Captain, Mike Pimm, thanked the RO and his team on the committee boat and support boats, galley and bar staff, and everybody who had helped organise the event along with the event sponsors, Craftinsure, Hartley Boats, Pirates Cave, Chesley Storage and Shepherd Neame Brewery.
The next event in the Craftinsure National Circuit Series will be the Southern Area Championships at Shoreham YC on 15/16 June. See this website for more details.
(Overall results table in the version of this report on the Racing Results page).
Wayfarer Easterns: Day 2 and Results
Overall (top six):
1st, Guy Marks and Mel Titmus, 10pts
2nd, Andrew and Tom Wilson, 16pts
3rd, Richard Stone and Catherine Gore, 16pts
4th, Brian Lamb and Sam Pygall, 19pts
5th, Bill Whitney and John Shelton, 21pts
6th, Stewart and Catriona Coltart, 31pts
Full report to follow.
W Easterns at Medway YC: Day One
Guy Marks and Mel Titmus dominates the day and won all three races at a canter. Several other boats had podium places but lacked the consistency to pressurise the leaders.
End of day 1:
1st Marks/Titmus 3 pts
2nd Whitney/Shelton 9 pts
3rd Wilson/Wilson 14 pts
Champagne reception now followed by dinner. Tomorrow is another day.
Wayfarer Eastern Area Championship at Medway Yacht Club – Preview by Tim Townsend
About 20 boats are expected to convene at Medway YC this coming weekend for the Wayfarer Eastern Area Championships which is also Event #3 of the Craftinsure National Circuit and Travellers Series.
Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend, winners of the Inland Championships at the beginning of April will be absent but Andrew and Tom Wilson from Datchet Water SC head up a strong entry which includes Brian Lamb and Sam Pygall from Wilsonian SC/Medway YC, the current series leaders, along with Nigel and Belinda O’Donnell and their clubmates Mike Weighill and Carl Martin from Swarkestone SC who round off the Craftinsure National Circuit Series front runners at this point in time. ...read more
Alongside these, Bill Whitney and John Shelton from Shoreham SC, consistently near the front, will be making their first appearance of the season and John Goudie and Sam Boniface from Wilsonian SC will be hoping to repeat the good form which brought them 4th place overall at this year’s Inland Championships. Representation is also expected from Bough Beech SC through former National Champion, Guy Marks, who finished strongly at Medway YC’s Wayfarer open Meeting in 2018 and Dave Roberts who has been successfully racing Wayfarers for many years.
All the visitors will be joined by members of the strong local fleet including Richard Stone and Catherine Gore who love the lighter airs; all rounders Brian and Liz McKenzie who were the second placed British team at the 2018 European Championships in Denmark; and Stewart and Catriona Coltart, another team which can do very well in the lighter winds. Uber-competitive Mr Craftinsure, Mark Lee, with wife Jane, will be putting aside his golf clubs and making his first appearance of the season in his Wayfarer. All of these would expect to be at or near the front of the fleet if the stars align for them.
The racing will be close and competitive as always. The forecast for the weekend has fluctuated over the last few days but presently it is looking that winds will be from the south or southwest and somewhat light. Some competitors will be furrowing their brows and praying for more wind. Others will be clapping their hands with glee. There’s still time for it all to change.
In addition to the racing (six races over two days on the tricky tidal waters of the river), Medway YC will also put on its usual off the water activities; fish & chip supper on Friday evening for the early arrivals, free beer (courtesy of Shepherd Neame) in the marquee after racing, a champagne reception sponsored by Len Jones and Chesley Storage, a three course meal on Saturday evening with the Commodore’s legendary Kent-centric Quiz….a must do for the visitors from Derbyshire! (only joking, we’ve been promised no questions about Kent this year).
If you are reading this article, race a Wayfarer and haven’t entered the Easterns yet please come and join us. More details, including the race documents, can be found at www.medwayyachtclub.com/2019/04/wayfarer-eastern-championships-18th-19th-may-2019. Do not forget, this event is just one of eight that make up the Craftinsure National Circuit and Travellers Series. Competing at just two of the events guarantees entry to the prize draw which will be held at the season Finale at Bough Beech SC in November with fantastic prizes from Craftinsure, Hartley Boats, McNamara Sails, Allen Brothers and Pinnell & Bax.