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Rooster 8.1 Nationals at Weir Wood Sailing Club

by Captura Images 2 Nov 2009 06:06 GMT 31 October - 1 November 2009
Testing conditions for the Rooster 8.1 nationals at Weir Wood © Captura Images

The weekend of the 31st October, 1st November saw the Rooster Nationals at Weir Wood Sailing Club. There were some very testing conditions not only for the competitors but also the race officers. The forecast for the weekend was predicted lively to say the least, but when it comes to the weather things never go to plan.

34 competitors signed in for the Rooster Nationals on the Saturday morning with rigs provided by Rooster for a modest hire fee of £15 for those who did not have their own. Race officers Ernie Hatton & Pete Clifton set an Olympic course of triangle sausage with instructions to the fleet they had to pass through the start/finish line gate during the upwind legs only. Unfortunately Weir Wood Reservoir is a little low on water being only 43% full at present. So the race officers were somewhat handicapped to get big enough courses set to avoid the shallow spots especially if the wind was from the northwest. With winds forecast of gusting 38knts for the Sunday the race officer proposed to fit as many races as possible in the first day. The prevailing SW wind runs the length of the reservoir which helped. With the course laid the 1st Race start was 12:00noon.

The forecast was for SW wind of a force 3, not the case as it was struggling to get above a force 1 to 2. The visibility conditions were poor to start but gradually clearing just before the start of the first race. With what promised to be a steady force 2 the competitors were very keen to get underway, too keen in fact which resulted in two general recalls. The race officer then decided to use a black flag start. This brought the fleet into line with all 34 getting away. The wind proved to be quite testing with the wind veering to the north then backing a little as the rains arrived resulting in the beat becoming a fetch for the second lap. Jon Emmett made the best of these testing conditions leading the race from the start despite capsizing halfway through after an overstated roll tack. With Jon Holroyd and Ian Jones close on his heals he held them off to get 1st place with Holroyd 2nd and Jones 3rd.

After some repositioning of the race course, which proved quite difficult resulting in a shortened beat due to the lack of width in the water, with the wind now blowing across the reservoir. The 2nd race started under a Black Flag from the start with three boats over the line at the start, this meant their race was over. Race 2 proved to be re-run of race 1 with one exception, David Giles taking over 2nd place instead of Holroyd who had to settle with a disappointing 14th.

The wind had now veered towards the SW again resulting in a 15 min delay with the course being reset for the third time. By now the wind was a steady force 3 the sun was out giving some late autumn sunshine. Race 3 started under an “ I Flag” with all the competitors getting away with a clean start first time for some good close racing. Again the race was dominated by Emmett who was clearly enjoying the light wind conditions, which suited his sailing style really well. With Emmett again finishing 1st , it was Steve Cockerill providing a late challenge getting 2nd, his highest placing so far and Giles 3rd.

With the course having to be repositioned for the forth time with the wind now back to the SW the forth race started in similar conditions. It was clear this was unlikely to last as the wind began to drop again. With Emmett again leading from the start this was clearly his event for the taking, finishing 1st for the fourth occasion. Jones was 2nd for the first time partly due to a very close battle between Giles and Holroyd, whose positions changed several times during the race. Holroyd getting the better of Giles finishing half a boats length ahead. With the wind dropping the race officer called it a day.

After an excellent curry that was part of the entry fee there was a Halloween Quiz which kept the sailors entertained.

Sunday proved to be a complete contrast weather-wise to Saturday with driving rain, squalling gusting winds of some 32knts, it was clear that the weather front which was supposed to pass over during the night was some 12hrs delayed. A quick check with the forecasters the race officers took to the water and laid a course. However with the winds now gusting their promised 32knts a postponement was signalled.

After much debate with the winds predicted to build further the racing was abandoned for the day.

More photos from the event by Captura Images.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4Pts
1st416Jon EmmettWWSC-11113
2nd110Ian JonesDovestone33-628
3rd395David GilesWWSC-72349
4th422Jon HolroydWWSC2-145310
5th111Ian MorganWeston SC44-9513
6th380David BindingWWSC6-74616
7th81Steve CockerillStokes Bay-10821020
8th389Ian LeesDovestone SC5(DSQ)12724
9th426Peter YoungWWSC86-141125
10th415Matthew GilesWWSC1457-1526
11th249Nathan PoultonDovestone SC9(DSQ)11828
12th175Neil PetersPevensey Bay SC-131010929
13th92Simon BarringtonWWSC12-1981636
14th384Sarah KennedyStokes Bay111218-2241
15th427Simon DavisWWSC16(DNF)131241
16th420George ThompsonWWSC1513-271442
17th227Paul JefferiesHunts SC-219162045
18th419Donald MacdonaldParkstone Yacht Club-1817171347
19th425Peter NormanParkstone YC191119-2349
20th125Chris FyansWWSC1715-261749
21st197Kerry MorganWeston SC-2420151954
22nd199Bill SteanWWSC2816-291862
23rd423Jim BotterillSutton Bingham-2524202165
24th398Chris Spencer-SmithWWSC232221-2466
25th179John HamiltonWWSC202523-2768
26th418Nichols ColstonParkstone Yacht Club222324-2569
27th104Jon CowperHunts SC2618-282670
28th421Geoff BushWWSC-3326252980
29th388Mark LambdinBradford on Avon SC2927-302884
30th417Stuart HadfieldPenmaenmawr3221(DNF)DNS88
31st240Mark PhillipsFelpham SC312831(DNF)90
32nd157James AndersonStokes Bay34(DSQ)22DNF91
33rd424Anthony BoultonWWSC30(DNF)DNF3095
34th251Richard SharpBough Beech27(DNC)DNCDNC97

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