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Tactics To Win by Nick Craig
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Selden Merlin Rocket Nationals at Lyme Regis Sailing Club - Day 1

by Tim Fells 26 Aug 2012 20:49 BST 25-31 August 2012

The 160 competitors in the Selden Merlin Rocket Championships woke to a glorious sunny morning in Lyme Regis with a forecast of light to moderate south westerlies. After a practice race which was mainly an exercise in how far over the line you could start (but was won ominously by Stu Bithell and Christian Birrell), race one started first time under a black flag.

Playing the shifts up the left hand side seemed to be the winning strategy, although having a distinct speed advantage and going the right way as Stu and Christian did was a pretty good option. Showing that there is something special about this Olympic stuff, they sailed off into a commanding lead ahead of some of the country's best dinghy sailors.

Chasing hard for some time were Nick Craig and James Stewart until the bit in the Nick Craig winning manual which says 'it is impossible to pull the kicker on too hard' proved more than his poor boat was willing to take. A broken boom sent them for an early bath.

Next to take up the challenge of chasing Stu and Christian were Tom Stewart and Steve Hall but as the wind and waves built they slipped back letting first National Champions Taxi and Tom Pygall through and then Geoff Carveth and Graham Williamson.

On the final beat, with very tired legs after more than two hours racing, Jon Gorringe and Toby Lewis found an extra gear to pinch third from Geoff and Graham on the line. Tim Fells and Chris Downham got the better of Tom and Steve to take fifth.

This was meant to be the light wind day of the week but with some pretty big lumps of water coming down the course, there is some apprehension about what the windy days forecast will bring. Monday's race is borderline due to strong southerlies forecast.

Results after Day 1:

PosSail NoBoat NameHelmCrewClubFounders RacePts
1st3742 Stuart BithellChristian BirrellHollingworth Lake SC/Leigh and Lowton SC11
2nd3684Keyser SozeAndy DavisTom PygallBlithfield SC/WhistableYC22
3rd3712Oakey DokeyJohn GorringeToby LewisParkstone YC33
4th3736MetachrosisGeoff CarvethGraham WilliamsonHayling Island SC44
5th3727FragileTim FellsChris DownhamHayling Island SC/Salcome YC55
6th3733The Dark SideTom StewartSteve HallNorthampton SC66
7th3703FaithlessRichard WhitworthSarah BinesParkstone YC/Brightlingsea SC77
8th3739DoryBen McGraneRoz McGraneNetley SC88
9th3738Super Fast JellyfishSimon BlakeAlex JacksonShoreham SC99
10th3732 Dave WadeBen RaynerNorthampton SC/Yorkshire Dales1010
11th3670Filthy/GorgeousAndy TunnicliffeBruce DeppeRoyal Windermere YC1111
12th3650HeadcaseRichard AdamsChris GouldMidland SC1212
13th3729ShabazzleJohn TurnerRichard ParslowLyme Regis SC1313
14th3707Monkey BusinessJon IbbotsonM.J.GiffordRanelagh SC1414
15th3722StealthMatt BiggsBen HollisBlithfied SC1515
16th3691Quick FIxMike CalvertIan GarwoodAxe YC1616
17th3735The Clone WarsDavid WinderPippa TaylorHollingworth Lake SC1717
18th3728Molsci QueenJudith MasseyOliver WellsHayling Island SC1818
19th3723Revenge of the SithSimon PottsHolly ScottBlithfied SC1919
20th3741Bear NecessitiesSimon LyttonJackie LyttonHayling Island SC2020
21st3693Slippery when WetWill RaineySophie MackleyShoreham SC2121
22nd3656Wild CardOlly TurnerRichard CainShoreham SC2222
23rd3724SublimeMartin JonesVicky JonesHayling Island SC2323
24th3685The Black PearlWilliam WarrenChris RobinsonShoreham SC2424
25th3627SnorterDan WilletPete NicholsonBrightlingsea SC2525
26th3563LeaderSam PascoeMegan PascoeWeymouth SC2626
27th3676Hot TottyTim HarrisonFrancis GiffordRanelagh SC2727
28th3696Tiger TigerAlan WarrenWilliam CarrollShoreham SC2828
29th3658BernardChris JenningsLiese ScottBurghfield SC2929
30th3740Why AskPatrick BlakeJilly BlakeCookham Reach SC3030
31st3539Gangsta ParadiseDan AlsopJenny KingLyme Regis SC3131
32nd3661Shmoozie BlueGraham ScroggieBen ScroggieParkstone YC3232
33rd3641Puff the Magic DragonMark WaterhouseClaire LangholzParkstone YC3333
34th3731MayhemAndy JonesMaddy JonesParkstone YC3434
35th3700BrazilianPhil EmeryKaren EmeryWhitstable YC3535
36th3672Bola BolaJohn CooperBen JonesWhitstable YC3636
37th3617Nearly All OverTom ChadfieldAndy ChadfieldBlithfield SC3737
38th3690General LeeAndy DalbyPhil DalbyHampton SC3838
39th3730Blood Sweat & BeersPaul HollisAlex WarrenBlithfield SC3939
40th368Still Not OverJohn PinkEd ClaysonHill Head SC4040
41st3583Back to the FutureChris MartinTom DunneBlithfield SC4141
42nd3633Chill OutDave BurseyFrances LovellParkstone YC4242
43rd3716Carbon FootprintSteve LeneyGill LeneyBlithfield SC4343
44th3697Too Dark 'N' StormyRichard PageLizzie DalbyHampton SC4444
45th3692NemoRien ZilvoldJulie NuttallWhitstable YC4545
46th3643MoistTim HarridgeBen HarridgeHampton SC4646
47th3557Out Of The Blue 2Callum MackenzieRory MackenzieOgsten SC4747
48th3721HighlanderNick TurnerCarly GurrStarcross YC4848
49th3613Two Red HerringsTim LawsScott HamptonStarcross YC4949
50th3683BluebirdMark BarwellLouise JohnsonLymington Town SC5050
51st3634Ministry of PleasureBen ArcherHugo PullenParkstone YC5151
52nd3569Time ZuluJames WarrenDuncan BellHampton SC5252
53rd3577NostradormouseDerek DaviesAnnabelle Ransom-WilliamsExe SC5353
54th3628Trigger HappyRobin CharlesWilliam WinterStarcross YC5454
55th3657RevolutionAnthony LoftsFrancesca LoftsRoyal Windermere YC5555
56th3713Duck and DiveSteve HarlingEleanor ThomasStarcross YC5656
57th3510Crazy DiamondMike RaineJaney HillRudyard Lake SC5757
58th3604Aunt FannyStuart GurneyPhillipa DanielsLyme Regis SC5858
59th3547Moondance AssasinTim MaleRebecca MaleBlithfield SC5959
60th3668Urban WarriorMark SmythJemma HorwoodWembley SC6060
61st3619Dark 'N' StormyGuy BrowneTommi CluleyTrent Valley SC6161
62nd3632Wild KnightMarcus RobGraham WebbCookham Reach SC6262
63rd3626Business As UsualAndy HayCaroline HayStarcross YC6363
64th3529Pass The ParrotJohnathan EdwardsJustin EdwardsShotwick Lake6464
65th3681Midnight FlightDouglas MaxwellBeate PohlerWembley SC6565
66th3629Zero GravityPeter BrowneDave CluelyTrent Valley SC6666
67th3625Point BreakRichard BramleyGeorge WarrenShoreham6767
68th3371Encore FumeePaul DeanNicki Della PortaWembley SC6868
69th3711SeawolfDave LeeDan NewmanStarcross YC6969
70th3675 Nick CraigJames C StewartFrencham Pond SCDNF81
70th3734The Black BoatDavid HayesJonny RatcliffeHayling Island SCDNF81
70th3587 Chris IlesKathy IlesLocks SCDNF81
70th3645Blue VelvetIan SharpsEllie MartinBurghfield SCDNF81
70th3651JupiterColin BrockbankMartin HughesWembley SCDNF81
70th3511Heaven SentAndrew MillsEllie MillsHampton SCDNF81
70th1074DoodahRichard StevensAnya DaviesRNSADNF81
70th3574Holy GrailJohn DonoghueMichael AireyLlandegfeddDNF81
70th3710Paradigm ShiftAndrea RalphJohn ReesHayling Island SCDNF81
70th3559Smart CookieL.ToshJoe ToshUpper Thames SCDNF81
70th3402Hot GoblinRobert KennaughAbi SpurrMidland/Blithfield SCDNF81

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