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Comet Duo National Championships at Cransley Sailing Club

by David Talbot 15 Aug 2013 17:28 BST 10 August 2013

The Comet Duo nationals on 10th August were the best attended for many years with 9 boats participating at Cransley Sailing Club.

The club had prepared well with several hours of weed cutting using their ferocious catamaran, and the only weed was around the edge of the lake. The race officer Eddy Hughes, set a figure of eight course for the first race starting just off the dam. The Duos had a competitive start and by the end of the first lap the leaders went around the last two buoys three abreast. The competition was competitive throughout the fleet, but the 1150 PY of the single handers was not challenged by the double handers (PY 1175) who were slower in the lighter wind. The race finished with Nigel Austin ahead of David Talbot, and John and Jacqui Sturgeon the first dual hander coming 4th on handicap.

Cransley Sailing Club put on a great lunch which left everybody ready for the afternoons racing. All week the forecast was for winds of 6knts and gusts of 8knts, but for the second race the wind picked up and in the third race it was 10-12knts with a few gusts that might have been 20knts. So although it was the same course the sailing changed with the wind and the way it came down the arms of the lake.

In the second race John Linnell got a great start and was several boat lengths ahead at the first mark with Nigel Austin and then Stephen Linton, although he just hit the mark and had to do a penalty that let David Talbot through. With more wind the Duos did not catch up the single handed Comets that started 5 minutes earlier in the same way as they had in the lighter wind of the first race. Nigel Austin managed to hunt down John Linnell and win claiming the championships.

In preparation for the third race a slab reef was seen, although this was shaken out before the start, maybe unwisely! There were at least 5 capsizes as the single handers were overpowered by the squalls coming through. The dual handers of the Surgeons and the Fords fought together for the whole race and finished in a dead heat after nearly an hour of racing, but they were not able to beat Nigel Austin who won again, followed by John Linnell.

A presentations of trophies, mugs and bottles was accompanied by a tasty tea, and the Duo fleet thanks Cransley Sailing Club for such a well organised event.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3Pts
1st103Nigel Austin Cransley‑1112
2nd69John Linnel Cransley‑6224
3rd99David Talbot Hawley Lake2‑335
4th4John SturgeonJacqui SturgeonHawley Lake4‑54.58.5
5th165Mike Sawford Cransley37(DNS)10
6th73Jane Townsend Cransley‑74610
7th93Nigel FordAnne FordOlton Mere‑864.510.5
8th150Stephen Linton Hawley Lake5‑8712
9th90Bob HughesGwen HughesCransley99(DNF)18

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