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National 12 Open at Shoreham Sailing Club

by Sophie Mackley 2 Apr 2013 20:21 BST 31 March - 1 April 2013
National 12 open at Shoreham © Warwick Baker / www.warwickpics.com

A small but very select group of hardy National 12 sailors joined Shoreham Sailing Club for two days of exciting racing over the Easter weekend. The sun shone, the wind blew (from 10-20 knots) and shifted (up to 30 degrees) and then it snowed – and that was just the first day!

In the first race Jon Ibbotson and Charlotte Stewart lead all the way, while William Warren and Sophie Mackley, and Tom Stewart and Andrea Ralph tussled it out for second until William was a bit gung-ho at the windward mark... and then spent the rest of the race defending from Geoff and Amelia Camm, who had Nick Copsey and Alex Warren hot on their heels.

Geoff and Amelia nailed the first beat of the second race and rounded in first, comfortably ahead of Nick and Alex. The next windward mark proved a little more testing and whilst still leading Geoff and Amelia had a couple of goes to get round, letting everyone through.

In the end it was a significant wind shift that decided the race which William and Sophie won from Jon and Charlotte, then Geoff and Amelia.

Sunday dawned even windier with gusts up to 25 knots, and although the forecast said it was warmer no-one was convinced and everyone put on an extra layer.

Out of the harbour the waves built and the run down to the start proved a little too fruity for some. Off the start line the fleet split and having done one less tack William and Sophie got to the windward mark first, and carried right on past for the shelter of the harbour and an early shower. On the race-course Tom led all the way round with John and Katy Meadowcroft recovering from an early capsize to take second from Jon and Charlotte.

A depleted fleet started the last race, which Tom won, giving him the open meeting.

Many thanks to Shoreham Sailing Club, especially the race officers and hardy rescue boat crews.

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