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Devon Yawl National Championship at the Plymouth Regatta

by Andrew Matthews on 20 Jul 2016 15-17 July 2016

The Devon Yawl National Championship 2016 was sailed over 16 and 17 July hosted by the Port of Plymouth Sailing Association Regatta. It was preceded by a feeder race to Plymouth for the fleet based on the River Yealm on Friday 15 July.

Force 3-4 winds accompanied by sun on sparkling water greeted the 21 boat start line throughout the event. Both days saw the fleet inside Plymouth breakwater more or less in the middle Eastern section of Plymouth Harbour. The wind on Saturday was predominately SW with a course angling across to a windward mark towards the middle of the breakwater. Sunday saw a more Southerly wind with the windward mark inside the Eastern end of the breakwater.

The race management was impeccable. The team led by the Race Officer, Keith Kendall, set the familiar triangle/downwind courses for the three Saturday races and the two on Sunday. Races were finished after around an hour. The courses had welcome long reaching legs on the triangle, over towards Jennycliff on the eastern side of Plymouth Harbour and then back down to the leeward mark towards Plymouth Hoe.

Somewhat unusually for this fleet, the start lines were well mannered. One or two OCS returned and the Black Flag, normally a familiar sight at this event, was nowhere to be seen. Well mannered start lines did not reflect lack of competitive spirit and the fleet was mostly away together. Almost without exception throughout the five races the Port side of the course was favoured. This caused the usual Port/Starboard incidents as the slower Port tackers came into the windward mark with those who had stuck it out on the Starboard side of the course.

The first race on the Saturday was sailed in the lightest airs of the event. The favoured Port side was a significant feature in the first beat of this race with those on the Port end of the line establishing early leads. Chief amongst these was last year's champion Dan Ellis with James Gough-Allen in DY384. This year's newcomers to the fleet, Mark and Helen Phillips in DY52, were there or thereabouts, to their delight. The race saw DY384 home first, Andrew and daughter Anna Hudson second in DY54 (borrowed from Dan Fellows for the event) and Elly Pegg and James Thomson in DY35, the oldest boat in the fleet, third.

The wind filled in and settled down for the second and third races on the Saturday. Sometime national champion Tim Petitt with Tony Calcutt in DY186 won the second race with DY384 taking second place followed by third placed Shane Buckley and Ed Williams-Hawkes in DY349.

There were several shipping movements near the course on both days. Race three was enlivened by a close encounter for the leading end of the fleet with a piloted merchant vessel passing between them and the leeward mark as they were approaching it. All went well and Andy and Vicky Williams in DY354 took first place with DY384 second and DY186 in third place.

Races 4 and 5 on Sunday saw similar conditions but with a Southerly wind. Again, the Port side was favoured. DY384 came home first in race 4 followed by DY 186. Dan Ellis's win in this event put his first place beyond doubt with two wins and two seconds.

In the final race, DY54 took first place, DY384 second and Andrew and Cathy Matthews in DY100A, third.

Only one protest was heard, lodged by the RO in relation to a course infringement.

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

PosSail NoOwnerHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1DY 384Dan EllisDan EllisYYC1(2)2126
2DY 54Andrew HudsonAndrew HudsonYYC24(7)3110
3DY 186Tim PetitTim PetitYYC(7)132612
4DY 354Andy WilliamsAndy WilliamsYYC(13)514919
5DY 100AAndrew Matthews YYC47(10)5319
6DY 349Shane BuckleyShane BuckleyTopsham SC6357(RET)21
7DY 35Elly PeggElly PeggYYC386(11)522
8DY 96James Mc NaughtonJames Mc NaughtonTopsham SC(10)946423
9DY 80ATim YongeTim YongeYYC(14)131181042
10DY 188Adam BoothAdam BoothYYC915(17)12743
11DY 372Richard KingRichard KingYYC5121414(15)45
12DY 52Mark PhillipsMark PhillipsYYC8(19)1591345
13DY 128Chris WilliamsChris WilliamsYYC121112(13)1146
14DY 184Andrew HattersleyAndrew HattersleyTopsham SC1168(DNC)DNC47
15DY 80Toby CourtauldToby CourtauldRock SC(16)109151448
16DY 91Adrian TroopAdrian TroopTopsham SC1514(16)101251
17DY 160John SkeltonJohn SkeltonTopsham SC1716(18)17858
18DY 103Andrew WoodAndrew WoodSalcombe SC18171316(DNF)64
19DY 350David HardingDavid HardingFort Picklecombe SC19181918(DNC)74
20DY 333Phil BelshamPhil BelshamYYC(20)2020191675
21DY 310Ian SchoefieldIan SchoefieldLympstone SC(21)2121RETDNF83

1st Topsham boat overall and winner of the Dan Trout Trophy:
Shane Buckley and Ed Hawkes-Williams in DY349

1st boat not from Topsham or the Yealm:
Toby Courtauld and Jono Walter in DY80

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