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Ocean Elements 2018

Topper Open at Bury Lake Young Mariners

by Dave Blakesley 1 Jun 2009 10:21 BST 31 May 2009
16 helms on Bury Lake for the annual Topper open © James Hamilton

On the 31st May 2009, 16 Toppers descended on Bury Lake for their annual topper open. The weather gods shined on us, and the open was blessed with a good F4 breeze and bright sunshine.

The first race was battled out between James Barton and Matthew A.H, with Matthew taking an early lead before James jumped up behind him on the final 2 laps.

Race 2 started well for Matthew, but James was delayed at the start due to equipment failure, but rapidly caught up ground to finish with a respectable second place.

The third race was another tight match between James and Matthew, who were regularly a leg up on the rest of the fleet. The race finished with Matthew coming out on top.

With race 4 due to commence, and half the fleet having packed up to go home, the race committee grabbed the remaining club boats left on shore and joined in the fun. Don’t worry; we left the clubs health and safety advisor’s daughter in charge of results, and the photographer in charge of the start sequence. The addition of the race committee made for a hotly contested lead, with Dave Blakesley leading up the first beat, closely followed by Matthew, Toby Linnell and Jon Sweet. After crossing the line for the second lap in second Dave played the upwind leg wrong and dropped down to fourth, at which point Toby took the lead, followed by Matthew and then Jon.

On the fourth lap things became tense as Jon overtook Toby, only to be ruined by a downwind capsize to put him back into third. Final places for the last race were Toby, Matthew, Jon then Dave, with the race officers choosing to leave their race positions out of the final results in order to keep things fair. James had retired for the last race, leaving the final positions as Matthew in first, Lottie Hammett in second, and third being Jack Cubitt. Many thanks to the race committee and the competitors for making this the most successful and entertaining BLYM Topper open to date.

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