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Merlin Rocket National Champs at Looe Sailing Club - Day 1

by Owners Association 18 Aug 2008 10:42 BST 17-22 August 2008

Seventy eight Merlin Rockets arrived in Looe on Saturday to driving rain and force 6 winds. However, on cue, the wind gods delivered a force 3–4 with 3-4 foot swell and some sunshine. About as good as it gets in the Merlin.

Race 1 and the first start as per tradition, was a general recall. So on to the black flag and this time the fleet behaved themselves. Off the start the fleet split left and right. To the left The Black Pearl (Will Warren/Chris Robinson) led with Wild Card (Roger Gilbert/James Stewart) taking the middle ground and Bluebird (Tom Stewart/Liam Dempsey) taking the right. With strong tidal set to the SW, those out to the left overstood. This resulted in the guys from the right rounding first led by Wild Card and Bluebird.

Down the next two reaches, Wild Card extended from Bluebird followed by Keyser Soze (Andy Davis/Ellie Bremer) and Devilled Kidney (Chris Lewns/Tom Pygall). Over the next lap these places did not change with some of the boats that had come in from the left, working their way through the fleet led by The Black Pearl.

With Wild Card out in front in clear air, the only boat that was to even to come into contact with them throughout the race was Bluebird, who at one point mid race closed to within 100m. Bluebird held on to finish second, followed by Keyser Soze, Business as Usual (Glenn Truswell/Olly Turner), Devilled Kidney and Time & Tide (John Bell/Graham Williamson).

That evening saw the Mayor’s/Commodore’s reception, plus free gin and tonic from Speed Sails.

The question on many people’s lips today, is will the fleet catch Wild Card or can Gilbert & Stewart win back to back championships? With the forecast for the rest of the week to be winds from 10 – 30+ knots, it looks as if this could be a week to that will be talked about for a while.

Top 20 positions in race 1:

Rank SailNo Boat Helm Crew Club R1
1st 3656 Wild Card Roger Gilbert James Stewart Frensham Pond 1.0
2nd 3683 Bluebird Tom Stewart Liam Dempsey Northampton 2.0
3rd 3684 Keyser Soze Andy Davis Ellie Bremer Chase 3.0
4th 3626 Business as Usual Glen Truswell Olly Turner Starcross 4.0
5th 3666 Devilled Kidney Chris Lewns Tom Pygall Whitstable 5.0
6th 3652 Time & Tide John Bell Graham Williamson Hampton 6.0
7th 3653 Artemis Judith Massey Dave Dobrijevic Hayling Island 7.0
8th 3643 Moist Alex Jackson Chris Downham Shoreham 8.0
9th 3691 Quick Fix Mike Calvert Jane Calvert Axe 9.0
10th 3685 The Black Pearl William Warren Chris Robinson Shoreham 10.0
11th 3618 Easy Rider Jon Gorringe Toby Lewis Parkstone 11.0
12th 3670 Filthy Gorgeous Richard Whitworth Sally Ann Townend Hollingworth 12.0
13th 3661 Shmoozy Blue Graham Scroggie Ben Scroggie Parkstone 13.0
14th 3640 Smart Tart Simon Blake Phil Dalby Cookham 14.0
15th 3647 Liquid Dreams Mark Barnes Peter Nicholson Whitstable 15.0
16th 3696 Tiger Tiger Alan Warren James Warren Shoreham 16.0
17th 3676 Hot Totty Patrick Blake Jilly Blake Cookham 17.0
18th 3659 Zeno Julian Parry Holly Scott Hollingworth 18.0
19th 3627 Snorter Jon Fish Sophie Mackley Whitstable 19.0
20th 3665 Still Not Over Matt Biggs Rob Kennaugh Blithfield 20.0

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