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Notthingham University Snakebite Team Racing

by Evangeline Howarth on 19 Feb 2016 13-14 February 2016

Cambridge victorious after a close final race with the Notorious NOGs at Snakebite, held at Notts County Sailing Club

Valentine's weekend was celebrated at the University of Nottingham's Snakebite, with much love shown for the perfectly breezy and sunny weather! Well into the university sailing season, the event was well attended and saw some fantastic racing from some of the best teams on the circuit.

The event hosted 18 teams, ­­15 of which were university teams from 10 different University's and three others: West Kirby Youth Team, a Notts County team and Tonbridge School to team race in Fireflies at Notts County Sailing Club who happily host the event each year.

Many of the teams arrived on Friday night to register before being directed to host's house for the social in the city. This was followed too soon for some with an early start on the Saturday morning in order to set up for the day of racing ahead. After a briefing at 09:30 and an abundance of bacon sandwiches racers were ready to go, starting precisely on time at 10:00 thanks to the regimental race officer, Keith.

Although the wind was due to build throughout the day, sailors were able to maintain a great standard of racing under full sails and were even able to enjoy a bit of blue sky; all in all, perfect sailing conditions! There were a few minimal breakages to Birmingham's boats that were swiftly dealt with by the Bosun, Ollie Thompson to allow for almost undisturbed racing and along with the hard work of the Nottingham helpers, we were able to blast through a massive 78 races which put us in good stead for splitting into fleets the following day.

Sunday's racing commenced at the even earlier time of 9:30, leaving sailors to racing out onto the water as well as on the course. After a distinct increase in the wind halfway through the morning, it was decided that we take a brief interlude from racing in order to change to storm sails.

This was a wise move as although the conditions were sailable, it allowed the sailors to focus on the team racing. We managed the full 45 races in Bronze, Silver and Gold Fleets before going into semis and finals in the afternoon. Cambridge Grey, Edinburgh Blue, NOGs and West Kirby Youth Team made for an exciting afternoon of close races, leaving Cambridge victorious and NOGs to take the silver!

A huge thanks is in order for the University of Nottingham Vice President, David Jackson with whom the success and smooth running of the event lies as well as all those from Notts County SC and Notts Uni who were there all day from sunrise to sunset on both days helping out! Further appreciation for the umpires Ed, Carol, Jon, Steve and Jonny who braved the cold out on the ribs.

Cambridge seemed delighted with their win and the box of beers that accompanied it, taking time to thank all of those involved. After a fabulous weekend of both sailing and socialising, I think we can safely say that Snakebite was once again a success and enjoyed by all who took part!

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