Wayfarer Inland Championship at Datchet Water SC (+ results)

photo of winning duo

Wayfarer Inlands – Winners, Simon Townsend (l) and Michael McNamara © Anthony Cooper

Hosted by Datchet Water Sailing Club, the Wayfarer Inlands and first event of the Craftinsure National Circuit (NCS) and Travellers Series got under way over the weekend of the 6/7th April with thirteen Wayfarers in attendance, with four home boats joining nine visitors including last year’s NCS champions Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend and runners-up Andrew and Tom Wilson. Several other seasoned Wayfarer circuit regulars were in attendance, although there were a few absences because of illness and injury.

On the first day, races 1 and 2 were held in a steady F3-4, with a decreasing breeze in race 3. Many competitors had not had a tremendous amount of sailing since the Circuit Finale at Bough Beech last year and used the event as a shake-down before the season’s main events including the Internationals in Ireland in July. To test the boat-handling of the teams, the race officer and his team adopted an interesting and previously little used (on the Wayfarer circuit at least) “reversed P course” that combines triangle and sausage in a single lap, enabled by having a huge beat the length of the reservoir.

Playing the shifts and having the courage of your convictions in choosing a side and sticking to it invariably paid on the first day where position round the windward mark on the first round went a long way to deciding your overall finish position as the racing was largely processional at times.

As predicted, a titanic tussle began to develop at the front of the fleet between the front-runners from last season (McNamara/Townsend and Wilson/Wilson). The Wilsons just edged day one with two bullets to McNamara’s one, winning races 2 and 3 and only narrowly being pipped in race 1 by the downwind cunning and guile of McNamara and Townsend. At the end of day 1, Lamb/Pygall were the “best of the rest” with a consistent score line of three 3s just ahead of a very congested midfield pack that John Goudie/Sam Boniface led ahead of the Dynamic O’Donnells. ...read more