Middle Nene SC defeated the weather forecasts on the weekend of April 5th and 6th for the annual Enterprise Open Meeting, which is a joint Eastern and Midland Area event sponsored by Speed Sails.
This year the Open Meeting was preceded by a training day on the Saturday coached by Mike McNamara in his usual humorous, individual and highly instructive style. Sixteen boats came to the event and everyone from beginner to expert learnt a lot. All agreed it had been an excellent day. A chilly (mostly) northerly breeze provided a wide variety of conditions, from a gentle F2 in the morning, to a full-blown F5-6 squall in the afternoon which gave even the experts something to think about. The large changes in both strength and direction gave Mike a great range of valuable examples to aid his coaching.
In spite of overnight snow, the sun soon emerged and Sunday 6th provided a F2-3 northerly (again variable with big windshifts) which ensured interesting racing with plenty of place-changing and not a little frustration throughout the day.
Two back to back races were run in the morning, but the weather remained benign all day and all 15 competitors raced the third race in the afternoon, although a few packed up early in order to get home.
Jonathan Woodward, the 2007 cup holder, was trying out a new flyaway jibstick, (as used by the National Twelves) as yet not Class Approved, so his results did not count in the final tally although he would have finished 2nd overall. He took an early lead in the first race but was overtaken by Stephen Graham and James Holmes from Northampton SC in E 23223, who went on to win both the first and second races, thus securing the cup. Jane and Nick Scutt (E 22702) of the home club came 2nd and Paul Young with Iain Leiper (E22901) from Midland SC was 3rd.
Graham Kirkup (Grafham Water SC) was left crewless and went round single-handed. He brought the Easter Eggs from Grafham because their Easter Egg races were abandoned because of the weather. They were awarded to; Oldest Boat - Tim and Jo Coleman (E 20202 Snettisham Beach), First Married Couple - Jane & Nick Scutt, Last Boat - Jack and Jenny Mead (E 22977, MNSC - discounting Jon Woodward and Graham Kirkup, see above), best Easter Bonnet – Kim Hall (E 22873 MNSC) and Loudest Scream – Jo Coleman (result of a surprise gybe).
1st 23223 Steve Graham & James Holmes (Northampton SC) 2pts
2nd 22702 Jane Scutt & Nick Scutt (Middle Nene SC) 3pts
3rd 22901 Paul Young & Iain Leiper (Midland SC) 6pts
4th 23159 Martin Bottomley & Ray Ball (Emberton Park SC) 8pts
5th 22623 Andy Shipp & Alex Alcock (Hunts SC) 8pts
6th 22439 Phil Bevan/Luara Bevan (Grafham SC) 9pts