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Plas Menai 2015

Solo Nigel Pusinelli Trophy at Hayling Island Sailing Club

by Will Loy on 14 Jun 3-4 June 2017
Solo Nigel Pusinelli Trophy at Hayling Island © Peter Hickson

Hayling Island Sailing Club welcomed a whooping 63 National Solos to contest the prestigious Nigel Pusinelli Trophy over the weekend of 3-4 June.

This event was originally created as the "Pre-Championship" with the emphasis on providing some last minute practice on the sea. WPNSA had been the chosen venue for the previous 8 years but with next years National Championship returning to HISC, this event would also serve as a taster for 2018.

HISC have a long and illustrious relationship with the Solo class and with over 60 Solos in the dinghy park, can be relied upon to provide a healthy home entry and some seriously strong talent.

It has been a really good season for sailing conditions, I have missed some great events with sun and good breezes and though the allure of sun drenched beaches in Greece was some comfort, HISC combined force 4-6 winds, unbroken sunshine and a huge swell to twist the jealousy knife a little deeper into my back.

Add 43 visitors to the local fleet of 20 and you have an event that some other classes would consider as a National Championship.

The calibre at HISC is high, just walking around the club you can smell the talent and see the racing confidence in the eyes of even the youngest sailor. Like moths to the light, this also attracts visitors, keen to test their skills against the best the club can muster.

With Solos rigged and sailors oiled up the fleet launched into a building W-SW breeze and headed across the famous Hayling Bar to the race course. For anyone who has yet to experience this, they should do, as once done will forever be remembered. The sail out also provides a perfect warm-up for the days racing and any pond sailor will, by the time they reach the start area, be ready for the bumpy stuff.

Draycote Water based sailors Chris Brown and Nigel Davies did a split tack test before racing commenced (a good reason to get out to the course early) and noted that an inshore route to the top mark would present less tide.

With spray tops donned as the wind strength increased to a max of 25 knots, the fleet set off in the building sea state. Full rake on, full hiking on and in fact, full everything on! Charlie Cumbley owned the event with five straight bullets but that does not tell the whole story as he admitted that he could not start for toffee! Fortunately he showed formidable downwind technique and was able to overhaul early race leaders, including Chris Brown, Paul Childs and Olly Davenport.

The trick upwind was, to quote Chris Brown, "start at the pin end, get a clean lane, tack on the lay line. Sometimes it was hard to tack in front of the starboard boats but if you cleared them you were in the top 5 at the mark."

Downwind was another story and the key according to Cumbley was "keep the boat flat out planing and not being too greedy on the waves.

For the Solo readers reference, Cumbley's boat (Winder/North) set up was:

  • Heel position; 3070mm
  • Rake from mast tip to top of transom; 5.94m
  • Shrouds set so tight 5mm from front of gate.
  • Plenty of kicker upwind and centreboard well up when going upwind to foot fast through the waves.
Cumbley opted to use a development polyester 3DL for day 2 and this will hopefully be the sail design for 2018.

Commenting on his race 5 win, "After a freak gust knocked me over just after the start I filled up and rounded pretty deep so worked my wotsits off to get back and finally get Browny on the last reach to the finish! Particularly enjoyable that one but I then took the opportunity for a breather and an early shower. Browny had been getting quicker through the day so not surprised he won the last race...."

Chris Brown commented, "I thought I had a good chance of winning as Charlie was some distance back. I led the pack until the last two reaches, behind me Charlie hard worked hard and was on my transom. I kept him off me the first reach but on the last leg he pushed me way high of the mark and we ended up running to the finsh line where he used his skills to find a wave and under take me."

Brown won race 6 and commented, "Last race was again pin end with the usual suspects at the top mark again. This time Ian Hopwood, the capsize king lead the race and revelled in the conditions.

I was wondering if he would inspect the centerboard on his first gybe, it was now force 6 with some sizeable waves. Unfortunately he stayed upright! The 2nd lap we were pulling away from the fleet, a quick shout to Ian as we were going way past the lay line to the top mark... He tacked, let go of his tiller and went swimming. Sorry Ian, but I did wave as I passed him! I kept an eye on Olly Davenport and held for the race 6 win. I have been using a new CBCoverStore polish and maybe that made the difference as my results have improved."

So, as we set up for the Noble Marine UK Nationals there have been some notable performances from Cumbley, Olly Davenport in the P&B powered JP/P&B hull who finished second overall and has catapulted him into the top ranks of the fleet, Chris Brown who scored the last race bullet in his North F2 powered Winder and locals Nick Bonner (Winder/Doyle Sails) and new Solo convert Richard Lovering, both who upheld the HISC tradition of excellence!

I can throw in around another 35 names who will be looking to put themselves into the top 15, Andy Davis, Mike Sims, Andy Tunnicliffe, Martin Frary and Steve Ede among them. It should be an unmissable event and full of drama and excitement.

Thanks to all who attended and to HISC for hosting an excellent event. Thanks also to Noble Marine who keep us on the water 24/7.

More photos can be found at

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st5705Charlie CumbleyWarsash SC11111(DNF)5
2nd5737Oliver DavenportNorthampton‑44423215
3rd5712Chris BrownDraycote‑153652117
4th4982Nick BonnerHISC8‑9747329
5th5719Richard LoveringHISC1072(BFD)8431
6th5645Ian HopwoodNantwich‑2063129737
7th5290Cliff CrawshawTata Steel111058(DNF)842
8th5744Iain McGregorSalcombe YC‑221310341343
9th5707Nigel DaviesDraycote9‑1581111544
10th5314Leo DixonHISC‑14511912946
11th5297Michael HicksQueen Mary SC6‑53141061046
12th5750David MitchellWarsash SC1611‑25751251
13th5608Steve EdeArdleigh1381715‑18659
14th5130Mark LeeWeymouth3141322(UFD)1163
15th5553Alec PowellHISC5‑221914211574
16th5561Tim Lewis ‑21122117101878
17th5689Rob CookNorthampton121715‑27241684
18th5286Tim DickinsonHISC25‑46236131986
19th5738Ewan Birkin‑WallsGrafham Water SC192720‑31161496
20th5393Simon DerhamLittleton‑301812302317100
21st5670Nigel ThomasHill Head SC2424‑27191527109
22nd5745Andy FoxLeigh Lowton‑372016341722109
23rd5596Ray CollinsLocks SC‑282622202024112
24th5535Tim JacksonPapercourt2621‑32282523123
25th5300Doug LattaPortchester SC29‑3529261430128
26th5134Robert LaurieRYA7162425(DNF)DNC136
27th5735Andrew VoyseyHISC2725312927(DNC)139
28th5514John DixonWest Kirby SC1829392331(DNF)140
29th5651Lawrence CreaserHISC3619263228(DNC)141
30th5446Alex PowellHISC‑393833331926149
31st5494John SteelsStarcross YC353037‑442621149
32nd5463David PickeringChase SC‑493238382220150
33rd5545Paul LewisHISC23232813(DNC)DNF151
34th5520Paul ChildsHISC17218(DNC)DNCDNC165
35th573Oli WellsNorthampton2319(DNF)DNCDNC170
36th5168Jonathan OtterPapercourt4439(DNC)353029177
37th5575Shaun WelshWeston SC4141‑48373531185
38th4454Stash LawickiPapercourt38‑4847453325188
39th5524Kev HallNorthampton32374116(DNF)DNC190
40th5748Neil DavisonHISC5340303932(DNF)194
41st5282Vernon PerkinsSouth Cerney SC‑524244463728197
42nd5509Duncan PeaceSpinnaker5043454329(DNC)210
43rd5576David MoseleyHISC4833(DNC)4034DNF219
44th5630Greg SwiftHISC46363541(DNF)DNC222
45th5695Ian IngramEarlswood Lakes31(DNF)4021DNFDNC223
46th5495Robin GaddHISC343436(DNC)DNCDNC232
47th5668Paul CutbillHISC54(UFD)3418DNFDNC234
48th5064Mike DavenportRedesmere SC5751514738(DNF)244
49th5352Mike WilkieDesbourough SC47494342(DNF)DNC245
50th5547Peter WarneNorthampton334442(DNF)DNCDNC247
51st5334David SteelHISC(DNC)DNCDNC3636DNC264
52nd5341Sandy BriggsHISC4528(DNC)DNCDNCDNC265
53rd4204Roy NewportPapercourt5956(DNC)4839DNF266
54th4116Phil DunnHISC554546(DNC)DNCDNC274
55th5564Graham WilsonNorthampton4047(DNC)DNFDNCDNC279
56th4999Alex ButlerHISC(DNC)DNCDNC24UFDDNF280
57th5359Peter EdwardsBough Beech SC565250(DNC)DNCDNC286
58th5436David MoodyHISC(DNF)5049DNCDNCDNC291
59th4491Grayson EacottSWSC5154(DNC)DNFDNCDNC297
60th6000Patrick BurnsRYA43(DNF)DNCDNCDNCDNC299
61st5237Derek JackmanCYC42(DNF)DNCDNCDNCDNC301
62nd4551Bill HutchingsTonbridge5855(DNC)DNCDNCDNC305
63rd4874Richard MayPapercourt(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC320

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