Please select your home edition
Craftinsure 2012

Merlin Rocket Nautilus Inland Championship at Burton Sailing Club

by Rachel Rhodes 28 Sep 2017 16:47 BST 23-24 September 2017

Burton Sailing Club welcomed the Merlin Rocket fleet for the Nautilus Inland Championship on 23rd and 24th September 2017. With 12 knots and sunshine the 40 boats took to the water for the six fast and furious short course races that were scheduled for the Saturday.

Race 1 got underway on a windward leeward course after a general recall the race officer got out the black flag and the fleet got underway. Simon Potts and Holly Scott with Mike and Jane Calvert close behind, showed the fleet the way but they should have gone to Specsavers as they failed to see the shortened course flag and went to the right hand leeward gate. This allowed Andy "Taxi" Davis sailing with Pete Gray to take the bullet followed by Dave Wade and Rach Rhodes. It was then a race back to the line for Potts and Calvert under spinnaker.

The short windward leeward course was providing interesting racing with the leeward gate splitting the fleet at the bottom of the run. Due to the wind direction, the courses we compact with a short first beat, so to save further confusion the PRO kept the remainder of the days races to 2 laps. Taxi and Pete managed another win in race 2 followed by Chris and Chris in second, with race 3 going to Mike and Jane Calvert who were enjoying the shifty conditions followed by Pottsy and Holly. Race 4 went to top lady helm Caroline Croft crewed by Matt Lullham Robinson. Race 4 also saw the first casualties to the black flag, some making the most of the situation and taking the time to have an ice cream on the beach and still making it back for the next race. In the dying patchy breeze Dave and Oliver Winder showed the fleet the way from start to finish with Pottsy and Holly getting their second runner up result of the day. Taxi and Pete took another bullet in the final race of the day, following by Matt Biggs and Beka Jones.

The fleet came ashore, some perhaps a little dizzy, pitched tents (for those people not put off camping in Pwllheli) and retired to the bar ready for dinner and daily prize giving, followed by music and dancing to Newton Park until the early hours of the morning. The top glamping prize has to go to Chris and Caroline in their fold up palace which could have slept the whole fleet!

The race format for Sunday was for the more traditional two one-hour races on a sausage-triangle-sausage course. Ian and Ellie Sharps had a great first beat but missed out the spreader mark and had to drop their kite and go back for it. This let Matt Biggs and Beka Jones into the lead which they held to the finish. Dave Wade and Rach Rhodes were looking good for second until a bad gybe let Taxi and Pete sneak through on the last reach.

Completing the sausage first kept the fleet tightly packed. Race 2 of the day was almost a re-run of Saturday's race 1 with Pottsy and Holly making the most of the run and sailing into the lead closely chased by Mike and Jane Calvert but this time they spotted the shortened course flag taking 1st and 2nd with Taxi and Pete taking third and the title of Nautilus Inland Champions 2017.

Thanks to Burton Cailing Club for hosting an interesting format of racing over the weekend, and to the competitors for trying being prepared to try something different. Next year's Inland championships will be on the coast at Cardiff Bay Yacht Club.

Photos by Kevan Bloor can be found on flickr here.

Full results can be found here.

Related Articles

A touch of magic for the Merlin Rocket Class
Official clothing partner announced Magic is often a word associated with the Merlin Rocket and perhaps more so than ever in 2018, as Magic Marine come on board as the official clothing partner for the class. Posted on 17 Feb
A Demonstration of Design
The life, times and boats of Ian Proctor As the UK started to emerge in the early 1950s from the years of wartime austerity, the dinghy and small boat sailing scene would undergo a huge explosion, both in terms of numbers and variety. Posted on 8 Feb
Or as Corporal Fraser would say, "We're all doomed" The working title of pt.2 of this three part series was 'Snakes' – with pt.3 then being 'Ladders'. Together with pt.1, 'I am not a number', the contention is that small boat sailing has undergone changes that are only now making themselves truly apparent. Posted on 22 Jan
Two World Titles, One European, Two UK Nationals
A great 12 months for Nick Craig Sometimes it all falls into place and sometimes it doesn't. 2017, and the beginning of 2018, have proved fruitful for Nick Craig. Posted on 21 Jan
56th Hamble Warming Pan preview
Notice of Race now published The Hamble River Sailing Club will be hosting the 56th Hamble Warming Pan on 24th & 25th March 2018. This year a number of new classes have been invited to the event. Posted on 19 Jan
Merlin Rocket Downriver Race at Ranelagh
Racing from Putney to Battersea Saturday 11th November saw 17 merlin rockets arrive on Putney Embankment for the final Merlin Rocket event of the year, being the culmination of the Thames Series, held as a downriver race, from Putney to Battersea, hosted by Ranelagh Sailing Club. Posted on 13 Nov 2017
Merlin Rockets at Hollingworth Lake
Going through the port hole in the final Craftinsure Silver Tiller event Hollingworth Lake SC hosted the final Craftinsure Silver Tiller event 2017 on Saturday followed by a three-course meal, prize-giving for the year, dancing and of course the obligatory going through the port hole. Posted on 2 Nov 2017
Merlin Rockets at Blithfield
High winds for penultimate Craftinsure Silver Tiller event Storm Brian had already flexed its considerable might at other events, but a forecast weather window saw Blithfield SC seek to carry on and penultimate round of the Craftinsure Silver Tiller was set to be on, on Sunday 22nd October. Posted on 24 Oct 2017
Aspire renew Merlin Nationals sponsorship
For 2018 event at Lyme Regis The Merlin Rocket Owners' Association are delighted to be able to announce that their 2017 Championship sponsors, Aspire Financial Advisors, enjoyed themselves so much that they have already signed up to support us in 2018. Posted on 20 Oct 2017
Merlin Rockets at Burghfield
For Craftinsure Silver Tiller series event 23 teams travelled from as far as Devon, somewhere north of Birmingham, and some bumper bashers from Essex to support the first Craftisure Burghfield Merlin Silver Tiller event. A warm welcome awaited us, along with a coffee and a bacon buttie. Posted on 15 Oct 2017