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CoastWaterSports 2014

Leader Open at Rollesby Broad Sailing Club

by Ian Ayres 10 Sep 2014 06:49 BST 7 September 2014
Race 1 starts during the Leader open at Rollesby Broad © John Ayres

Both Leaders and Bitterns returned to Rollesby Broad on Sunday 7th September for their rearranged opens following a blown off weekend earlier in the year. Despite early morning light winds the breeze gradually built to a steady force 3 by the afternoon giving lots of tight racing over varied conditions.

Race one was led off by local sailors Ian & Sharon Ayres closely pursued by Mike and Val Sherwen. Roger and Sybil Morse then made a jump through the fleet to give chase downwind before the wind died on the fleet on lap 2. With everyone expecting a shortened course which didn't happen there was plenty of place changing on lap 3 where Mike and Sally Newlove, attending their first open, leapt into second finishing just a couple of lengths behind the Ayres with Sherwens in third.

A significant change of wind direction, strength and course for race 2 saw the Ayres first to tack of on a major wind shift just after the start, but it was Chris and Jane Wharmby – now wide awake after between race pizza – who led round the fist mark. The Sherwens took over second place downwind as the Leaders caught the earlier starting club fleet, and then traffic took over as everyone started to lap the Bittern fleet on lap 3. The Ayres navigated this best but could not quite clear the jetties on the beat allowing the Sherwens back through to win by a length.

Race 3 saw considerably more wind and a better direction allowing more space between fleets and two longer beats. The Wharmbys were now on form and the lead changed between them and the Ayres too many times to remember but a slight edge upwind favoured the Wharmbys who won by a couple of boatlengths.

With three different winners and all of the fleet holding second place at some point, overall results were close with only one point separating first and third!

Overall Results:

1. Ian & Sharon Ayres (Rollesby Broad) 3pts
2. Mike & Val Sherwn (Bawdsley Haven) 4pts
3. Chris & Jane Wharmby (Milton Keynes) 4pts
4. Mike & Sally Newlove (Reading) 6pts
5. Roger & Sybil Morse (Welwyn Garden) 9pts