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Mirror National Championships at Pembrokeshire Yacht Club

by Nigel Thomas 20 Aug 2013 10:59 BST 10-13 August 2013

Andy and Katie Smith take the title

With the Mirror Worlds having completed in Ireland only a week earlier, a reduced but high quality fleet of 33 boats arrived at Pembrokeshire YC to contest the UK Mirror National Championships.

With camping available next to the club, a good forecast, plenty of breakfast and meal options, and evening entertainment laid on, the event looked set to be a good one. On the Friday, RYA National Junior

Squad coach Catherine Maguire held a well supported coaching session for all-comers - the additional practice was sure to up the level of competition. The race area was to be in the largest part of the harbour, around Dale Roads, meaning a 30 min sail to the race course avoiding the shipping and impressive fueling piers along the way, all under the watchful eye of the safety boat crews - thanks.

Day 1 - Saturday

Both scheduled races were held in a southerly 7-10 knots with a slight swell. Courses were triangle & sausage on both races.

Race 1 got away, despite a port end bias line, with just some individual recalls. Nigel Thomas with Oliver Leary played the centre of the beat and lead after one lap. With Nigel Wakefield with Emma Levison going hard left on the 2nd beat and picking up a nice port lift, the finish order was 1st Nigel Wakefield & Emma Levison, 2nd Nigel Thomas & Oliver Leary, 3rd Angus & Frazer Hemmings.

Race 2 got away under a black flag, something which we would see a lot of. With the breeze gradually decreasing, Andy and Katie Smith lead all the way, finishing 1st. With 2nd Esme & Scarlett Shepherd, 3rd Arran Holman & Lucy Offord.

Day 2 - Sunday

All three scheduled races were held in a bright and sunny westerly 12-16 knots with a chop caused by the wind against tide. Courses were triangle, sausage, triangle on all races.

Race 3 and Nigel Wakefield & Emma Levison lead around the 1st mark followed by Chris & Katie Jenkins followed by Reg Grayson & George Stainforth. By the end of 3rd beat, Andy & Katie were in the lead followed by Emma Grayson & Ben Settle, then Nigel & Emma. The top three positions remained unchanged to the finish.

Race 4 got away under a 'P' start with one boat OCS. Arran & Lucy lead around the windward mark followed by Rory Odell & Lewis Bowen, then Chris & Katie. At the 2nd rounding of the windward mark, Arran & Lucy were still leading ahead of Chris & Katie with Rory & Lewis 3rd. On the 3rd rounding, it was Chris & Katy leading ahead of Rory & Lewis with Andy & Katie 3rd. On the final two legs Rory & Lewis took the lead and held it to the finish.

Race 5 also got away under a 'P' with one boat OCS. At the 1st windward mark, Nigel & Emma lead from Arran & Lucy, then Angus & Fraser Hemmings. On the 2nd lap, Nigel & Emma's boat sustained some damage and had to retire leaving Arran & Lucy building a lead over Angus & Fraser. However at the finish it was Angus & Fraser ahead of Arran & Lucy, with Rebecca Stevens & Niamh O'Neill in 3rd.

Day 3 - Monday

All three scheduled races were held in a bright & sunny 14-18 knots with a chop caused by the wind against the strengthing ebb tide for races 7 and 8. Courses were triangle, sausage, triangle on all races.

Race 6 got away under a black flag after a couple postponements in the final minute due to some significant shifts. Chris & Katie made a perfect port tack start by the pin and crossed the fleet. At the windward mark, Rebecca & Niamh were leading with Nigel & Ollie 2nd and Nigel & Emma 3rd. With the wind shifts, some significant gains and losses were to be made, with the early leaders losing out to a left shift at the top of the 2nd beat. At the finish, it was Reg & George 1st, Rory & Lewis 2nd Chris & Katie 3rd.

Race 7 - There was a long delay due to a shifting wind. By this stage, the tide was ebbing more strongly and the chop was building. Eventually the race got away cleanly under a black flag. At the windward mark, Chris & Katie were leading, with Reg & George 2nd and Rory & Lewis 3rd. On the 2nd round with the wind decreasing slightly, it was Reg & George, Chris & Katie and Rory & Lewis all rounding the top mark together. There were some more place changes on the final round, but Reg & George held on to win ahead of the improving Tom Cosier & Nick Pugh 2nd, with Chris & Katie 3rd.

Race 8 - The wind had dropped to a steady 12-14 knots and this meant less chop. Once again the race got away cleanly under a black flag. Oliver & Hannah Wilson made the best start on a pin end bias line and were rewarded by rounding the windward mark 6th behind Nigel & Emma 1st, Arran & Lucy 2nd and Andy & Katie 3rd. Also going well were Harriet & Helena Watkins age 11 & 8 respectively - one of the youngest teams competing. At the windward mark on the sausage, it was Arran & Lucy leading ahead of Andy & Katie, with Tom & Nick 3rd. By the finish it was Andy & Katie 1st, ahead of Tom & Nick with Arran & Lucy 3rd. Harriet & Helena capsized at the final mark gybing their spinnaker, but did well to recover the boat and finish the race.

Day 4 - Tuesday

The remaining two races were scheduled for the final day - the wind from the west 10-15 knots with sunshine. Andy & Katie were 3 points ahead of Rachel & George starting the day - but with a 2nd discard coming into play after race 9, anyone of about six boats were still in with a chance of overall honours.

Race 9 - got away under a black flag after a couple of attempts using a 'P' start. Even with the tide only just past high water, the left side of the beat was paying and it was Arran & Lucy rounding 1st ahead of Reg & George, then Rachael & Amy Jenkins 3rd. On the 2nd beat, the middle seemed more favoured Arran & Lucy were still leading, follwed by Rebecca & Niamh 2nd, then Rory & Lewis. On the final run, Reg & George got up to take 2nd place behind Arran & Lucy, with Rory & Lewis 3rd. Andy & Katie finished counting a 9th. With calculators whirring, Reg & George were now leading on 23 points, Andy & Katie on 24 points, and Arran & Lucy on 29 points!

Race 10 - got away under a black flag. With the tide now ebbing, the left side was paying upwind. It was Arran & Lucy and Nigel & Emma rounding the windward mark together, followed by Tom & Nick. With the wind decreasing slightly, Arran & Lucy extended their lead to cross the line first 1st, followed by Nigel & Emma, then Tom & Nick. However there was a protest between the two leading boats, Arran and Nigel, for a windward mark infringement - the result of which became clear would decide the championship. After a hearing, Arran & Lucy were DSQ. Leaving Andy & Katie Smith to be crowned 2013 UK Mirror National champions, with Reg Grayson & George Stainforth 2nd and top Juniors, and climbing to 3rd were Rory Odell & Lewis Bowen.

A big thanks and congratulations to Pembrokeshire Yacht Club for hosting a superb event, organising the great weather, the evening entertainment and food, and for being extremely welcoming. Also a big thanks to Navigators & General Insurance and Harken for their generous sponsorship of the event. For 2014, the National and Europeans championships will be hosted by Brixham YC. Come and join us!

More photos can be found here.

Overall Results:
If you finished in the top ten at the Mirror nationals then enter your Gear Guide information here

PosFleetSail NoHelmCrewR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10Pts
1stGold70513Andrew SmithKatie Smith‑161134‑13519529
2ndSilver70756Rachel GraysonGeorge Stainforth6‑1054‑1111421033
3rdGold70655Rory OdellLewis Bowen5‑1271924‑143435
4thGold70668Angus HemmingsFraser Hemmings3‑234614‑1197337
5thGold70720Arran HolmanLucy Offord12310525‑1331(DSQ)41
6thGold70791Nigel WakefieldEmma Levison1‑2437RDG6‑151210145
7thGold70190Tom CosierNick Pugh98‑1810‑1382211252
8thGold70564Rebecca StephensNiamh O'Neil‑114883‑116104952
9thGold70716Esme ShepherdScarlett Shepherd82‑14‑135107651154
10thGold70688Chris JenkinsKaty Jenkins‑211362(OCS)33781355
11thGold70563Nigel ThomasOliver Leary251611107‑195‑19864
12thGold70757Emma GraysonBen Settle‑20‑202127910861771
13thSilver70715Gemma KeersJames Taylor7‑18‑229816161313688
14thGold70582Rachael JenkinsAmy Jenkins416151415‑218‑1714793
15thGold70015Matthew Grayson 14791522‑231211‑3016106
16thGold70560Jennifer LorimerSally Lorimer171417171415‑231916‑21129
17thSilver70534Tom DeanEllle Benn13‑28211618181715‑2212130
18thSilver70795Patrick TaylorFelix Jeffries‑2619‑2320121218201715133
19thSilver70652Tom WestonPaddy Jeffries10211922‑25209‑251523139
20thSilver70713Eleanor KeersIzzy Pugh(OCS)11202520(DNF)21161214139
21stSilver69667Harvey MartinMartin Egan1592519211922‑3018‑31148
22ndSilver70537Esther BowdlerLauren Bowdler226‑26211714‑29222424150
23rdSilver70675Ben HillGabe Hill18‑25122423221421‑2620154
24thGold69559John EdwardsGeorge Edwards281713(OCS)1617‑30262718162
25thSilver70697Harriet WatkinsHelena Watkins1915241819‑2626‑322022163
26thSilver70618George RichardsAlexander Baird‑29291128‑302520292519186
27thBronze705Tom SmithTracy Smith2522‑31‑29242428272126197
28thSilver70703Oliver WilsonHannah Wilson2427‑302728282418‑3125201
29thGold53561Rob Dean 27262723‑31272523‑2928206
30thSilver70184Ollie HawkinsArchie Hawkins‑31‑312926273127282327218
31stGold39508James GoodeCharlie Goode233028302629‑3124‑3229219
32ndSilver70606Jessica RuddAustin Rudd30‑32‑3231293032312830241
33rdBronze63244Anabel Iyengarlauren Iyengar32‑33(DNF)32323233333332259