Please select your home edition
MS Amlin 2019 - 728x90
Product Feature
Harken 40mm Ratchet Swivel - 2608
Harken 40mm Ratchet Swivel - 2608

Vintage Merlin Rocket Open at Upper Thames Sailing Club

by Richard Pausey 12 Oct 2012 09:36 BST 29 September 2012
Vintage Merlin Rockets at Upper Thames © Sherine Pausey

Upper Thames' open meeting this year hosted a De May series vintage event on Saturday 29th September 2012. Sixteen eligible boats took to the water in a moderate Force 2-3 from the Northwest, a great direction for short tacking up the river.

The Race Officer, Derek Berry, set a course with the windward mark some distance upstream of Spade Oak Wharf and a gybe mark opposite the club frontage, some ¾ mile downstream. With the sun out and the breeze filling the first race got underway with a couple over the line and further controversy ensued when Mike Stephens and Judy Fu in Flinkidink and Laurie Smart and Vanessa Pilon in Abstraction collided on the first beat up the favoured bank.

Martin and Jacques Hunter in Quiver took a commanding lead over Mike by the end of the first lap and it was unfortunate when Mike lost his spinnaker under the bow at the gybe mark on the 2nd lap and retired. Martin cruised home with Pat and Jilly Blake 2nd in Tiercel and Jeremy and Joe Deacon in Panatella were 3rd.

The second race started after lunch and this time, Martin was over the line and Mike got clear ahead on the first beat. Maintaining his lead, he rounded the leeward mark ahead of Pat, with Pete and Debbie Walker in Wild Waters and Chris Rathbone and Kim Breckenbridge in Exequsite fighting it out for 3rd. Mike kept his lead over Pat on the 3rd lap to take the finish line with Pete Walker in 3rd and Martin clawing his way up into 4th.

The final race saw Mike take a substantial lead over Pat, with Martin close behind. Mike kept out in front, with Martin moving ahead of Pat by the gybe mark, but Mike romped home on the final lap, with Pat regaining ground to take 2nd with Martin finishing 3rd.

Overall Results:

1st Mike Stephens and Judy Fu, 1097, Flinkidink
2nd Pat and Jilly Blake, 901, Tiercel
3rd Martin and Jacques Hunter, 774, Quiver
4th Richard and Alex Pausey, 2040, Robin Hood
5th Pete and Debbie Walker, 1700, Wild Waters

The day was a great success for the vintage fleet, with many beautiful narrow river Merlins taking to the water. Our thanks go to Derek and his team, the safety boat crews and Ashley in the galley for keeping us well fed. The club is looking forward to the fleet returning next season.

Related Articles

Merlin Rocket Craftinsure Silver Tiller Round 17
Lymington famously delivers whatever the weather The Craftinsure Merlin Rocket non-flying Silver Tiller circus landed at Lymington Town Sailing Club over the weekend of the 7th-8th September. Posted on 10 Sep
Minima Yacht Club Annual Regatta 2019
A good turnout of 24 boats enjoy some classic river sailing A good turnout of 24 boats, including half a dozen visitors from nearby clubs enjoyed some classic river sailing at Kingston over a weekend with conditions varying from warm sunshine and light airs to lashing rain squalls. Posted on 3 Sep
Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals at Looe day 5
Another glamorous day on the water The penultimate day of the Aspire Merlin Rocket Championships saw another two races and was again a glamorous day on the water. Winds from the SW around 8-12 knots with five degree shifts under mainly sunny skies was the order of the day. Posted on 22 Aug
Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals at Looe day 4
Proving to be one the best events for many a year The Aspire Merlin Rocket Championships at Looe is proving to be one the best events your correspondent has attended for many a year. Posted on 21 Aug
Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals at Looe day 3
Can there be advantageous spinnaker rips? It was another sunny morning in Looe with the forecast for a force 3-4 from the South South West. Another glamorous day was in store and so it proved with the first race for the West Country Trophy followed by the main event of the week, the crew's race. Posted on 20 Aug
9th Classic Boat Revival preview
5 races over the 7-8 September in Chichester Harbour This year's Bosham Classic Boat Revival which will be held 7-8 September and hosted by Bosham SC. Last year, the CBR celebrated legendary boat designer Ian Proctor's centenary with over 90 boats participating, across 34 classes from 22 clubs. Posted on 20 Aug
Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals at Looe day 2
A superb day with sunshine and waves Looe turned on the style for the second day of the Aspire Merlin Rocket Championships. A force 3-5 from 240 deg with sunshine and waves meant that everyone in the fleet could enjoy a superb day on the water. Posted on 19 Aug
Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals at Looe day 1
Great sea sailing with a full social programme at a picturesque venue For their 2019 National Championships the Merlin Rocket's have returned to one of their most popular venues, picturesque Looe on the south Cornwall coast. Posted on 18 Aug
Fantastic diversity in 2019
At the Aspire Merlin Rocket Nationals Nearly there. Prize glassware received and checked. Sponsors awards safely received and sorted. Social programme printed and published. Dinghy park pristine and ready for our 65 entrants. Race Management primped and preened ready for the fray. Posted on 14 Aug
Merlin Rocket Craftinsure Silver Tiller Round 16
'Real Sea Sailing' at Shoreham for the fleet The amazing circus that is the Merlin Rocket Silver Tiller Series turned up at Shoreham for some 'Real Sea Sailing' on the weekend of August 3rd and 4th. Posted on 6 Aug