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505s at Ovington Inland Championships at Grafham Water Sailing Club

by Norman Byrd 16 Nov 2016 13:51 GMT 5-6 November 2016
505s at the Ovington Inland Championships 2016 © Tim Olin /

Bright and somewhat breezy conditions greeted all the competitors for this years Ovington Boats Inland Championships. The 505s were racing on the same course as the 49ers and Musto Skiffs.

Race one started in pretty fruity conditions, Graeme Wilcox and James Spikelsey in RSA 8905 got their championship off to good start taking the first of four scheduled races from the well travelled pairing of Mike Pickering and Mike Priddle. Stewart Mears and Richard Tucker, GBR 9136 led from the pin end of the line in race two and were never troubled at the front, Norman Byrd and Nick Beloe (fresh out of a length sailing hiatus) in GBR 9131 managed to stay upright to finish second. Andy Smith and Roger Gilbert's championship came to end during race two with a broken crew.

AP over H was then flown as many of the skiff competitors were by now upside down as the breeze had strengthened. The (excellent) race officer, Mr Saxton, then questioned the fleet about a third race. Three takers ventured out in sunny and windy conditions. Stewart and Richard led a tight race only to have a poor last gybe allowing Norman and Nick to take their first win.

Day two started in similar conditions to day one (although it was considerably less windy in the boat rigging field). Stuart and Richard won from Graham and James with the new partnership of Ben Iliffe and Paddy Lewis in GBR 9158 coming third. Norman and Nick had another little swim.

Race five was won by Norman and Nick with Graeme and James second from Roger Deane and Richard Nurse in GBR 9125.

Everything hinged on the last race with three teams potentially being able to take the title. Stewart and Richard led at the windward mark from Norman and Nick in the most competitive race of the weekend. Norman and Nick successfully sailed their way down to fourth by the leeward mark before taking the lead by the end of the next beat. They then extended their lead over the following lap to take the win from Ben and Paddy.

Norman and Nick won the championship on count back from Graeme and James, with Stewart and Richard third overall following a black flag in the last race. The top three teams were only separated by one point. A fantastic weekend's racing was topped off with a spectacular Ovington Boats supplied trophy.

Photos from Tim Olin:

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st9131Norman ByrdNick Beloe ‑62161111
2nd8905Graeme WillcoxJames SpikesleyNetley Sailing Club13322‑411
3rd9136Stewart MearsRichard TuckerBurnham31215(BFD)12
4th9156Mike PickeringMike PriddleRestronguet24(DNC)54520
5th9125Roger DeaneRichard NurseRock SC5(DNC)DNC43327
6th9158Ben IliffePaddy LewisDatchet Water Sailing Club7(DNC)DNC36230
7th8881Neil RabbittsJack VincentBurton SC85(DNC)77633
8th9088Andy SmithRoger GilbertNotts County4(DNF)DNCDNCDNCDNC52
9th8511Neil SmithL. BratleyManor Park(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC60
9th800Martin SpenceOllie Hooper (DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC60
9th9126Stuart TurnbullAndy GeorgeBurton SC(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC60