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Catapult Bala Gala

by Stuart Ede 4 Aug 2009 08:18 BST 25-27 July 2009

16 Catapults attended their annual ‘Bala Gala’ with its mix of serious and fun races over 25-27 July. The first two TT races, sailed in a Force 3, developed into two duels; between Gareth Ede and Paul Ellis for first place and between Cliff Antill from Stuart Ede for third. In both races Gareth Ede prevailed over Ellis while Antill beat Ede Senior.

Sunday brought Force 4 rising to Force 5 winds. Several helms took turns in the lead in Race 3, but by lap two Stuart Ede and Ellis were first to the windward mark. Ede pulled away on the screaming reaches, while son Gareth hauled himself out of the chasing pack to snatch second place from Ellis on the line.

Ellis got away from the fleet in Race 4, and the order in the chasing pack was determined on the last beat as the fleet struggled to stay upright through a blinding squall. Antill claimed second place and George Evans third.

The final outcome was decided by Race 5 on Monday, sailed in a gusty Force 4. Early leader Stuart Ede was caught downwind by John Peperell, Nigel Harrison and Ellis. As they rounded the last leeward mark, Ellis snatched the lead while Ede dropped to fourth after a penalty. A finely judged tack for the line put Ede back in contention, but Ellis prevailed to win by a nose. This result assured Ellis’s position as winner of the Bala TT, with Stuart Ede in second and son Gareth, who had to miss the last day, in third.

Although the TT was exciting, the fun races made the event. In the Improver Pairs Race Chris Phillips didn’t really need any guidance from his coach Alastair Forrest to take a cracking win. The Team Race saw victory for the northern trio of George Evans, Nigel Harrison and Stuart Ede. Meanwhile the team of Richard and John Peperell and Stuart Ede emerged clear winners from the comedy of errors that was the Relay Race. The laughs generated sent everyone home with a smile on their faces.

Overall Results:

1stPaul EllisMarconi SC6
2ndStuart EdeFiley SC11
3rdGareth EdeFiley SC12
4thCliff Antill 14
5thGeorge EvansBala Cat Club17

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