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International Moth Scottish Championship at Loch Lomond Sailing Club

by Katie Hughes on 6 Sep 2-3 September 2017
International Moth Scottish Championship at Loch Lomond © Ditta Neumann

The first moth sailors arrived for the Sailingfast International Moth Scottish Championships at Loch Lomond SC on Friday afternoon to find a beach full of keen Waszp sailors assembling their new boats in the sun and the beginnings of a nice breeze.

Two moths, including the visiting Bladerider Brad Gibson, took advantage of a solid F3 from the north to get in some good practice. Arriving after work Paul Hignett was offered a quick sail in my already rigged Ninja, and flew off the beach to the cries of "have fun and don't break it...". A few seconds later, about half way through the moored yachts viewers on the beach saw the bow come up, and then the boat go down! This was followed by a careful low-ride back with a broken gantry. Thanks to the combined tool boxes and skill of Paul, Duncan Hepplewhite and Brad Gibson, a quick repair was effected and the boat was ready to race the next day.

After a morning enjoying the sunshine, nine moths launched at the first sign of breeze. Two vintage low-riding moths, a 1972 Stockholm Sprite sailed by Lyndon Beasley and a 1970's Imperium Scow sailed by David Morrice raced in the medium handicap fleet in the bay with Lyndon finishing the weekend in second place overall. Meanwhile the fleet of seven foiling moths headed out to sail through Hell's Gate in an area of the loch where there was a bit more wind expected.

A trapezoid course was shared with the Waszps and two races were held on Saturday in wind that was mostly plenty to fly round the course in but had a few holes to catch people out. Paul Hignett and Matt Ponsford in their Atomic built Voodoo moths both sailing with Macita foils were clearly fastest over the water, but were chased hard by the very well sailed Bladerider of Brad Gibson. There was good racing between the two Mach2s and two Ninjas who all exchanged places during the first race.

In the second race Paul and Alan led off the line and flew off to the right, only to find that those who were slow off the start were gifted a huge lift to take them to the windward mark ahead. It didn't take Paul long to work his way back through the fleet and again lead the race followed by Brad. The rest of the fleet had another good race and the finish was even tighter with Donald and Katie finishing together on the line for 3rd/4th place. On arrival back at the beach we were greeted with a very Wellcome beer from Emma Hepplewhite which was the start of a fun evening of BBQ, music and drinks by the fire.

Sunday was luckily drier than the forecast had predicted, but the wind a bit lighter than some of us had expected. Coming from the east it was always going to be tricky and there was a short delay while the race officer chose the best spot to lay the course. Although the wind showed promise early on it turned a bit light and patchy and most of the four short races involved a bit of low-riding.

Sadly some boats were unable to sail on the Sunday but we were joined by the Mach2 of Ian Renilson who had the speed to keep Paul on his toes. Paul and Brad got away in the first race to finish ahead of Ian and Katie. In the later races Brad was suffering slightly in lighter winds which suited the big Ninja foils of Katie who was able to get flying slightly earlier than the Bladerider.

The last race had the only recall of the event with Ian over the line and Brad also ducking back to re-cross. This allowed Katie to get ahead and lead around the first two marks before Paul resorted to distraction tactics so he could get ahead. Katie managed to hold on to second in a fading breeze.

Overall it was a great weekend and good to share a course with the Waszps who also looked to be enjoying some close racing. Thanks to all the team at LLSC for putting on the event and to Duncan and Emma from who sponsored the event.

More Ditta Neumann photos can be found on flickr here.

Overall Results:

PosHelmBoat DesignClub
1stPaul HignettAtomik VoodooLoch Lomond SC
2ndBrad GibsonBladeriderBirkenhead Radio SC
3rdKatie HughesNinjaLoch Lomond SC
4thIan RenilsonMach2Loch Lomond SC
5thDonald SmithMach2Aberdeen & Stonehaven SC
6thAlan MossNinjaLoch Lomond SC
7thSteven ForteithMach2Oban SC
8thMatt PonsfordVoodooHayling Island SC

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