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ISO Inland Championships at Draycote Water Sailing Club

by Pete Lindley 8 Oct 2010 17:16 BST 2-3 October 2010

The 2010 ISO Inland National Championships were held at Draycote Water Sailing Club on 2nd and 3rd of October. A fleet of ten crews assembled on a warm autumn morning with a gentle force 2 wind blowing from the south. Many crews had travelled from the south coast and they were joined by boats from Yorkshire, Teesside and Scotland.

Four races were scheduled for Saturday to be sailed back to back. Race one started with Colin Scott and Hugh Rout in ISO550 emerging from the start line melee to lead the fleet to the windward mark. Chasing closely were current National Champions, Pete and Annie Lindley in ISO 1013 and recent Eurocup winners Mike Lillywhite and Mark Riddington in ISO 815. By the end of the first lap 1013 had hit the front and took the leading trio off to the right on the second lap. In the chasing group Mick / Mark Pullin sailing ISO 645 and Colin Snook / Alison Revitt sailing ISO 1190 went left and it soon became apparent they had made a huge gain. At the windward mark ISO 645 lead from ISO 1190 and ISO 1013. Determined to regain their lead, the national champs used all their experience to chase down the leading pair. After a tricky run in the shifting gusty wind and a brief gybing duel 1013 was once more in front by the leeward gate. From there on they compounded their advantage to take the first race by a comfortable margin, followed by 645 and 1190.

Race two was soon under way and saw 1013 once more leading the fleet from Team Rooster 815 and Scottish traveller 550. Behind this leading trio there was an intense battle emerging between Chairman Bob / Calum in ISO 814, Rob and Lizzie Howlett back in ISO 1195 after recovering from injury, fleet newcomers Micky Early / Mathew Pounder, 645 and 1190. Chairman Bob prevailed over this group to take fourth behind 1013, 815 and 550.

With two bullets on the board it looked like the national champs were going to bag the Inland title as well. Team Rooster had other ideas and race three saw them take the win after a hard fought battle with 1013 and 550 following them in to score another third place but only after a tough race with 1195, only overhauling them on the final run.

With the wind swinging to the east the race officer re-set the course and the fleet lined up for the final race of the day. With the line being shared with the Buzz fleet the starts were closely contested. This time, just when they thought they had got into pole position, 645 were called back and spent all the race playing catch up. The usual suspects were leading the way again, this time joined by 1195 and 1190. Team Rooster took the win from1013 making it two wins a piece.

At the end of the first day the top three were, Pete and Annie Lindley 1013, 6 points , Mike Lillywhite / Mark Riddington 815, 9 points, and Colin Scott / Hugh Rout 550, 13 points.

On Saturday evening the combined Buzz and ISO fleets gathered at the nearby Dunn Cow Inn for an excellent meal and Class Chairman Bob Ladell ensured that everyone kept on the pace with the ale drinking. It was good to catch up with old acquaintances and make new ones as the ISO class starts to gather momentum. As previously mentioned Colin Scott had travelled with his family from Loch Tummel Sailing Club, a journey of about 450 miles and with his borrowed crew, Hugh Rout from Norfolk, had a combined age in the boat of 110 years. Despite never having sailed together before and not sailed in the ISO fleet they were pushing the leaders hard.

Sunday morning, grey skies and blustery with rain dampening the enthusiasm of the assembled crews. The final two races of the series were to be incorporated into the club racing sequence, which meant start number eight and a half hour wait in very gusty conditions. When the fleet got away it was Draycote sailor Chris Gandy and crew for the day Richard Botting in ISO 1008 who lead the way, revelling in the testing conditions. There were some really vicious gusts screaming down the course giving problems for some crews, putting out series leaders Pete and Annie Lindley, and Bob Ladell retiring with a broken kicker. By the windward mark it was Team Rooster 815 leading narrowly from 1008 followed by 645, 550 and 790. This order continued for a couple of laps until both 815 and 1008 were caught out in the gusty conditions around the windward mark, capsizing, to allow 645 through to steal the lead, much to the delight of Pete Lindley who was now a spectator from the shore.

With Pete urging them on hoping to preserve his series chances, 645 managed to hold Team Rooster off for the next lap and rounded the top mark onto the final run in the lead. Team Rooster gybed left but 645 found some good wind and blasted downwind. One more gybe to the line and victory would be assured. It was not to be! As they came out of the gybe the bow buried and as another huge gust rattled down the race course 645 was knocked down allowing Team Rooster 815 and 1008 back through to take first and second respectively.

After a break for lunch, only three boats came to the start line, with Pete Lindley having conceded the series to Eurocup winners Mark Lillywhite and Mark Riddington. With the wind still producing challenging conditions 815 underlined their dominance, leading from start to finish, taking the series and the 2010 ISO Inland Championship.

Overall Results:

1st 815, Rooster Sailing, Mike Lillywhite & Mark Riddington (Emsworth Slipper SC)
2nd 1013, Team RWO, Pete & Annie Lindley (Downs SC)
3rd 550, The Flying Scott, Colin Scott & Hugh Rout (Loch Tummel SC)
4th 645, Northern Pride, Mick Pullin & Mark Pullin (Halifax SC)
5th 1008, We’re Not allowed Wings?, Chris Gandy & Amy Gandy / Richard Botting (Draycote Water SC)
6th 1190, Serenity, Colin Snook & Alison Revitt (Calshot SC)

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