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Access Class Traveller Series at Chipstead Sailing Club

by Bob Mac Cormick 4 May 2013 07:31 BST 29 April 2013
Access Class Traveller Series at Chipstead © Richard Gibbons

Wealden Sailability has been at Chipstead Sailing Club since June 2011 and now operates on Tuesdays and Thursdays from the beginning of April to end of October. The centre doubled its clientele during 2012 and continues to expand during 2013, accommodating clients from all parts of Kent and some parts of Essex. WS has a fleet of eight Access 303W and one Access Liberty, but hopes to acquire another Liberty during 2013 and possibly to also increase the 303W fleet. The centre also has two Martin 16 and three Stratos Keel boats.

On Monday 29th April, Wealden "dipped its toe" into the waters of competitive racing and hosted the second Access Traveller Trophy Event of the year, at Chipstead Sailing Club.

The weather was kind and the day turned out to be sunny, windy, and not too cold, which resulted in a turnout of twenty competing craft on the water.

All classes were contested, with three Libertys, two 2.3s and a posse of 303Ws, both singles and doubles. The finishes in the 303W classes were satisfyingly close and the winners hotly pursued by the rest of the fleet.

Despite the close finishes on some races, Frensham Pond dominated the event, taking 1st (Lindsay Burns) and 2nd (Christine David) in the 2.3s; 1st (Paul Philips),2nd (Margaret Foreman) and 3rd (James Woosnam) in the 303W solos; and 1st (Peter and Peta Etherton) and 3rd (Andy Sheath and Kate Lintott) in the 303W doubles. Chris Atkin and John Aldridge of the Wolverstone Project denied Frensham a total walkover in the 303W classes and took a well-deserved 2nd place in the doubles.

Thank goodness Frensham had no entrants in the Liberty class, but I guess they knew that they would be easily seen off by David Durstan of Rutland, who took 1st place, closely followed by Vince Barton of New Forest and Peter Wagner of Wealden.

Bewl Water and Tideway also competed but, on this occasion, didn't quite manage to make the "Trophy List".

Prizes were awarded by Barbara Ide, of Chevening Parish Council, who was present throughout the day, assisting with all the documentation.

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