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Scottish Flying Fifteen Champs at Loch Earn Sailing Club

by Len Paterson 26 Aug 2009 12:30 BST 22-23 August 2009
Racing for the the Skelly Trophy at the 2009 Scottish Championships © Len Paterson

A small but high quality fleet of seventeen boats competed for the Scottish Flying Fifteen Championship, (The Skelly Trophy), over the weekend of 23/24th August at Loch Earn. Open, Silver and Classics were all represented.

The forecast West to Southwest force 4 or 5 for Saturday did not quite materialise, nor thankfully did the breeze back to the South during the day as had been indicated . Overall the mean strength was around Force 3 for the day and after the two races were completed the top five boats were covered by a spread of only four points with a different winner in each.

The Windermere team of Hart and Rigg in 3917 with a 1st and a 5th were tied with Derwent’s Robinson and Vasey in 3737 who collected the same positions in reverse order. Goacher and Evans in 3821,who had let the lead slip in the second race , and Hardisty and Errington ( no. 3906) were hot on the heels of these leading pairs.

Heavy rain and Easterlies were promised by the Met Office for the Sunday and they got it spot on with torrential downpours from time to time in winds that reached Force 4/5 on occasions. Race 3 looked as if it might decide the outcome of the weekend but even with Goacher/Evans winning handily the placing of Hart, Robinson and Hardisty in the top five boats meant that it would be all to play for in the final race.

In some ways this was the least satisfactory race for wind as shifts to the South produced tricky conditions around the final South windward shore mark. There were several changes of lead during the three rounds and coming up the final beat any one of Robinson, Goacher and Hart could have snatched the regatta. As it was the order across the line, decided in the last fifty yards, was Hart, then Goacher followed by Robinson.

The final positioning, after discards, was Hart/Rigg (RWYC, 3917) first and winner of the Skelly Trophy with two wins and a second, Goacher/Evans ( RWYC, 3821) second with a first, a second and a third and Robinson/Vasey ( DRSC, 3737) third with a first, a second and a fifth.

The Silver Fleet was headed by Scott Train and Graham Lamond ( TSSC, 3362). It particularly pleased old Loch Earn hands to see ‘Gilmac’ ( no. 485) , a boat that had begun its career on the Loch in the 1960s, sailed by John McMillan and Stan Wichiaj, win the Classic Fleet.

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