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RS500 Training and Gul GP at Datchet Water Sailing Club

by RS Class Association 11 May 2011 11:41 BST 7-8 May 2011


Tim Wilkins, RS500 class rep, held the second in a series of training workshops aimed at improving sailors of all levels in the RS500 fleet. Complete lack of wind in the morning gave the group a welcome chance to spend some time on the shore discussing the fine tuning of an RS500. Every one had a chance to study their set up before the wind filled in right on time after lunch. The fleet enjoyed a variable, fresh force 3 - 4 as they practised gybing, concentrating particularly on downwind lay lines and keeping the crew on the wire. All teams were able to analyse their performances in the de-brief session as they took to the classroom to see their video clips filmed from the safety boat.


The following day a challenging, but exciting wind breezed in and all the teams were able to put their training in to practice, along with an extra six boats that turned up for the racing. The race team at Datchet Water SC hosted four races back to back in gusty conditions. 30 knot gusts blowing across the course provided some high-adrenaline downwind legs. Upwind sailing was particularly challenging with the helms needing to work extra hard to proactively predict and prepare for the major gusts. All teams took at least one swim.

Father and son team Peter and James Curtis (Island Barn SC) were consistently strong in all the races, giving leaders Tim Wilkins and Heather Martin (Hickling Broad SC) a run for their money. In the second race they were able to stay ahead of the pack to take their first win of the series.

Another consistent team were Scott Room and Ian Preedy (Broxbourne SC) whose efforts in challenging conditions didn’t go unrewarded. They finished third overall with all places in the top five of the fleet.

Emily Talbot and Annabelle Larkin (Weirwood SC) gave an impressive performance and were the first all-women crew, finishing fifth overall in very demanding conditions. With 12 boats starting the day and only seven completing race four, the girls’ determination was rewarded.

The next event in the RS500 Gul circuit will see the fleet visit Great Yarmouth and Gorleston SC in Norfolk for some sea sailing and barbecuing on the beach – all good practice for the main event at Weymouth in August!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4Pts
1st625Tim WilkinsHeather MartinHickling Broad Sailing Club1-3113
2nd659Peter CurtisJames CurtisIsland Barn Sailing Club-21225
3rd616Scott RoomIan PreedyBroxbourne Sailing Club3-53410
4th678Tom CrockfordFenella WilliamsDatchet Water Sailng Club-645514
5th575Ben Wells?Datchet Water Sailng Club8(DNC)4315
6th538Emily TalbotAnnabel LarkinWeir Wood Sailing CLub727(DNC)16
7th550Hamish StewartRichard WalkerDatchet Water Sailing Club-1066618
8th826Michael ClappSue RisbridgerDatchet Water Sailing Club47(DNC)DNC25
9th624Alan FraserLinda FraserDatchet Water Sailing Club5(DNC)DNC726
10th884Finlay CurranGeorge Jorgensen 98(DNC)DNC31
11th636Will SummersSam DeloASSC(DNC)9DNCDNC37
12th748Anna ZmuraKeith SykesGorleston(DNC)DNCDNCDNC42
12th517Richard MorleySue MorleyBurghfield SC(DNF)DNCDNCDNC42