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Comet Open at Merthyr Tydfil Sailing Club

by Mark Govier 26 Sep 2011 22:00 BST 25 September 2011
Comets at Merthyr Tydfil © Mark Govier

A fresh southerly wind was blowing straight up the lake with a little drizzle in it as we arrived at Pontsticill Reservoir just north of Merthyr Tydfil. We welcomed visitors from as far afield as Ogston, Beer, Cransley, Hunts, Baltic Wharf, Cotswold and Littleton sailing clubs.

By the start of the first race the wind had moderated to a force two to three; the drizzle had almost stopped and there was a good start made by all. The first beat spread out the pack a little and the further end of the first reach was in a little lull which then caused a little bunching. But the long run back towards the clubhouse followed by a dead run, evidenced by some running by the lee caused a few places to change hands before the gybe onto a fetch. Hardening up onto the long beat through the line the first half-dozen places were still relatively closely contested. But after the alloted three laps Peter Dalton (Comet 668, Frampton upon Severn S.C.) finished first, followed by Chris Robinson (Comet 867, Burghfield S.C.) and then Eddie Pope (Comet 804, Ogston S.C.).

The “galley” team then did a magnificent job of feeding the fleet at lunchtime with an excellent selection of home-made nosh.

After lunch the wind had picked up slightly and moved a few degrees to the west so the course was altered. The sky was clearing and sun-cream & sunglasses were called for. The good moderate wind conditions allowed the start of the second race to again be quite close. But crews this time took a wide variety of lines to the windward mark; some paid off, others did not. Peter Dalton completed the first lap in the lead, followed by Henry Jaggers (Comet 800, Beer S.C.) and John Coppenhall (Comet 532, Hunts S.C.). As the race progressed the wind increased further to allow some exciting planing reaches. There were also a couple of capsizes as gusts caught some unawares on the run. Peter Dalton managed to stay ahead all the way to the finish but behind him several positions were fought over as the race progressed; finally Eddie Pope secured second place with Chris Robinson this time follwing him over the line in third.

The third race was started in similar conditions with the distance reduced to two laps. There was a good close start with a very congested "pin" end of the line. This time Ben Palmer (Comet 597, Baltic Wharf S.C.) completed the first lap ahead of Clive Chapman (Comet 704, Littleton S.C.) and Chris Robinson. On the final lap, Eddie Pope fought his way to the front, finishing ahead of Ben and Chris.

The shore crew then helped everyone quickly recover their boats and get packed away. We then enjoyed a nice selection of home-made cakes with tea in the sunshine before the prize-giving. Many thanks again to the visitors for making the effort to visit us and all those who helped who added the extra sparkle to what turned out to be an enjoyable autumn day.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1668Peter DaltonFrampton SC1142
2804Eddie PopeOgston SC3213
3867Chris RobinsonBurghfield SC2335
4597Ben PalmerBaltic Wharf6527
5532John CoppenhallHunts SC5479
6800Henry JaggersBeer SC471611
7426Rhiain BevanCransley SC126511
8704Clive ChapmanLittleton SC89614
9460Mark GovierMerthyr Tydfil SC712815
10317Kevin MorrisMerthyr Tydfil SC1181219
11654Brian WeatherlyCotswold SC1011919
12420Alun BevanMerthyr Tydfil SC9101119
13843Dee WeatherleyCotswold SC13131326
14581Mark WebberMerthyr Tydfil SC1414DNF28