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Fred's Big Toephy Footy Open at Guildford Model Yacht Club

by Keith Parrott & Roger Stollery on 10 Feb 5 February 2017

The first Footy Open event for 2017 "Freds Big Toephy" organised by the Guildford Club at Abbey Meads Lake took place on Sunday 5th February.

There were 10 boats on the water, which included two junior entries, being Roger Stollery's grandchildren Oliver and Nathan supported by their father Peter. The wind was a cold deceptive variable westerly 4 – 6 mph with gusts, blowing almost straight down the lake. RO Martin Crysell set a simple windward leeward course with a spreader at the windward end and a gate at the other. Being at the leeward end of the lake the water for these little boats was a little choppy and gave some problems if you were not in the right suit of sails.

The usual top skippers were immediately in the forefront of the races, with a ding dong battle between Peter Shepherd and John Burgoine, although finishing on the same overall score, John took the victory on count back with one more first place. Peter Jackson was campaigning a new narrow Footy design IBEX in carbon fibre and has still to develop its full potential. He battled well with David Wilkinson for 3rd and 4th Place respectively.

Understandably for the first race of the season there were some reliability issues among the fleet, which allowed Keith Parrott to claim 7th place overall, a pleasant surprise after a very poor start to the day sailing his trusty ICE with last season's suite of sails. He finally settled on using his C rig which gave the most consistent results, including a 2nd place and accepted a loss in performance down-wind to others carrying bigger sails.

Sid Simms, sailing another ICE did the opposite that he started the day well and lost out as the day went on. With the help of their dad, which was agreed by all at the start of the event, seven year old Oliver Stollery, who was racing his ICE BREAKER for the first time managed to complete 14 races getting better during the event to achieve a third place on his own in the very last race. His younger brother lasted only a couple of races, before joining the race committee as the official button pressing starter!

At the prizegiving Peter Shepherd thanked the race committee and said that he thoroughly enjoyed the event and thought that this was "one of the best events he had attended for sometime". John Burgoine was delighted to have beaten the two Peters and put yet another name on the infamous trophy.

The next Footy event is "The Mad March Hare" on Saturday 11th March. See details on the www.sailfooty.uk web site.

Overall Results:

1st John Burgoine (Birmingham) ICE 27pts
2nd Peter Shepherd (Abington Park) FAT BOY 27pts
3rd Peter Jackson (Abington Park) IBEX 34pts
4th David Wilkinson (Cotswold) ICE 55pts
5th Sid Sims (Birmingham) ICE 60pts
6th Oliver Stollery (Guildford) ICE 72pts
7th Keith Parrott (Frensham Pond) ICE 73pts
8th Roger Stollery (Guildford) ICE 81pts
9th Keith Bell (Abington Park) ICE 116pts
10th Nathan Stollery (Guildford) ICE 136pts

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