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Gul RS200 Inland Championships at Chew Valley Lake Sailing Club

by Nick Fisher 22 Oct 2013 21:24 BST 19-20 October 2013

The weekend started on Friday afternoon with a couple of early arrivals, wanting to show the hospitality that we can provide at Chew Valley, l forced myself behind the bar and commenced to entertain. My audience was small but we did our best and rolled off to our bunks at midnight.

An early start was on the cards for Saturday, the club gate was opened at 0800 and with the great help from Bristol Water allowing home club members to park on their premises, our car park team of Avon & Somerset Police Sailing Group proceeded to get the competitors parked up. We had permission to allow campervans, but not caravans or tents, disappointing a few competitors, including home club members.

There was a large mix of travellers and with 10 home boats we were able to have 65 boats on the water. With a slightly lower level than normal it was decided to start in Flights. There were 4 groups, purple, green, white and blue. Each to race against the other colours once each day, so 3 races per day.

Race officer, John Smalley, set up the course, and with the wind kindly blowing South by West down the length of the lake, the windward mark was set in the far distance, a spreader mark to keep the fleet apart as they rounded, and two leeward marks to give the choice and avoid the gybe at the bottom of the course.

With everything set, the forecast being 15 -18 kts with an expected increase later in the day, there was no time to lose. White & Green were first off, a clean start and 3 minutes later blue & purple were away. The idea being to avoid large numbers at markroundings and therefore lessening the possibility of damage or injuries. On lap 1, boat 1467(Chris Catt / Ally Martin) was getting away over 831 (Thomas Wright / Lottie Clay) in the first flight were leading and in the Second Flight 962 (Andrew Peters / Jill Peters) were leading on 634 (Dave Jessop / Renata Sapazinskaite) However by the end of the race it was 1467 taking the bullet over 1285 (John Teague / Naomi Pound) and the team of Peters maintained their lead but Dave Jessop was overtaken by Eddie Whitehead.

Races were scheduled for 35 to 40 minutes, back to back. R/O John Smalley was quick off the mark with race two, no delays and now it's white against blue and green against purple. First lap leaders in their respective flights were 1467 Chris Catt over 1311 (Matt Mee / Emma Norris) and 962 (Andrew Peters) over 854 (Andy Shaw / Pippa Horne) at the end of race 2 though it was 1311 taking the bullet from the First flight and 962 maintaining his lead. Another quick turn round and it was green/blue and white/purple. The wind meanwhile had dropped a touch but this was only temporary as a squall came through which flattened a few of the fleet, time for a rest sitting on the hull while it passed, meanwhile the leaders shot into the distance with Matt Mee rounding ahead of 822 (Eddie Whitehead / Toby Lewis) and in the second flight it was 1508 (George Yeoman / Sophie Ormsby) over 1237 (Dicken McClean / Clint Eastwood) at the conclusion it was Matt Mee over Eddie Whitehead and George Yeoman over Chris Catt. So came the end of day 1.

<a class=Gul RS200 Inlands at Chew Valley Lake - photo © Mark Pickthall /"> />Gul RS200 Inlands at Chew Valley Lake - photo © Mark Pickthall /

The evening started for the Sailors with the AGM, fortunately l didn't have to attend that, but ensured all was ready for the Buffet and Band. With the Band set up and the Buffet ready some weary people happily sat down to eat, just as we were finishing the Band started to play, and boy was it loud, l said, boy was it loud! Yes it was, l know l'm getting to be an old fart now but it was deafening, the band was brilliant but in a confined space it was maybe a little much, sorry Jo.

Day two dawned with a few sore heads, mine included, it had been my 60th the day before and I see no reason to grow up now. A nice day with a decent breeze. The race officer was rapidly out the starting blocks but with a general recall, a rejig and a new start it was blue/purple and white/green. After the first lap it was Matt Mee over Eddie Whitehead and George Yeoman over Chris Catt. At the end of the race the positions had reversed in both flights. However Whitehead had a flyer and was OCS gifting second place to George Yeoman.

A quick start and we're off again. The wind had shifted a bit to the west and a rejig made. By the end of lap 1 it was Daniel Lewis over Andrew Peters and Whitehead over Catt. However by the end it's Peters over Jessop and still Whitehead over Catt. Things are tight at the front of the fleet and race 6 it's all to play for. Again the R/O gets away a quick start and by the half way mark it's McClean over Catt and Whitehead over 1276 (Maria Stanley / John Pinner) with the fleet tiring and the end of the weekend coming the finish saw no change in the front of the first fleet but in the second it's whitehead over Matt Mee.

After a slight confusion over the OCS in race 4, which was easily rectified with the meticulous notes and use of dictaphones.

A fantastic weekend with a great atmosphere, many thanks to all who took part, see you next year. Photographs available shortly at

Report from Julian Bradley

Chew Valley Lake is as cute as an Idaho prom date in bobby sox, but in places just as shallow. This limitation meant the 65 boats raced in 4 flights. This arrangement renders my race report pretty tricky - I was only in half the races. So, to avoid boring you too much, I can only describe our experience and you can draw some inference from the results.

Oh – and pictures: there was a man there with an improbably large telephoto lens – do get in touch with RS! So, Chew Valley is very picturesque. If you have never been there,

My very game shipmate, who has only been racing 3 months and sailing not much longer, is also lighter than a Kleenex. Can't say I am that much heavier. This is good for outrageous offwind malarkey in the force 3-5+ zipping off the Mendips. Well, save that her helm managed to bin it on a couple of gybes.

Also, race 3 saw the kind of squall that buggered belief. It had the sort of horizontal rain that gets under your eyelids, and turned the start area into RS200 soup.

Day 2 was forecast to be breezier: probably was, but at least it was more consistent and manageable for limp-wristed types like me. Sacrificial spinnaker was in order. Fun, though I may get wheels on my keel next time I go there.

Overall, the race management was excellent, and both the wet and dry teams are to be congratulated. The line was mostly bob-on, and there wasn't any messing around between races. We all know the horror of crew progressively going paler than something on a mortuary slab, whilst watching a seemingly slack-jawed yom-yom in a committee boat brandish a wind indicator for half an hour... and not actually move the line or windward mark one iota. (I know, I know, they all do their best....) So full marks and a cigar to the race team. I was party to one general recall, but didn't see any black flags (though that doesn't mean there weren't any).

Results speak volumes for the competitive nature of the 200 fleet. Matt Mee and Emma Norris repeated their Not-Inlands success earlier this year – just - by dint of more wins from Chris Catt and Ally Martin who were on equal points. The latter team won the Bolle series overall.

Andy and Jill Peters were third by one point, but now are Cherubing – and will sadly miss the SEAS RS200 finale at Wembley this Sunday, 27 October. Forecast looks like an atomic westerly blowing straight down the lake. £200 of Rooster prizes up for grabs, £15 entry (a tenner if 3 or more boats from your club attend), and the clocks go back so you've an extra hour in bed for the 11 am start... more details here or just

Report from Andrew Peters

Grey sky lay low over the hills surrounding Chew Valley Lake as over 130 RS sailors arrived for their Inland Championships. After a briefing warning sailors to beware of the Pikeys on the lake (some kind of coarse fishermen apparently, distinguishable from their refined trout fishing cousins as the ones who don't fiddle with their flies.) At least there were no killer shrimp this year. The lake we were warned contained hidden shallows to trap the unwary sailor and due to the lack of water (in the lake not from the sky) the fleet was split into flights.

Nevertheless the wind was in a good direction enabling a long windward/leeward course to be set on both days. Strong enough generally to stretch everyone's hiking muscles and occasionally strong enough to clench other muscles too. Saturday was enlivened by a particularly viscous rain squall during the 3rd race which caught everyone's attention. A squall so dense it hurt and caused more than a few to see if they could catch a few fish themselves.

The racing over the weekend was dominated by 4 teams who were separated by just one point at the end of the 6 races. Eddie Whitehead and Tobytastic revelled in Sundays conditions to smash in three 'on the water' wins. Unfortunately an OCS in the first race put paid to their chances and they could only finish 4th with 9 points. Also on 9 points counting 3 race wins were Andrew and Jill Peters. Just one point ahead Chris Catt and Ally Martin, with no result lower than second, lost out on count back to the event winners Matt Mee and Emma Norris who added the Inland title to the National title they won in August. The silver fleet was almost as hard fought with Sam Thopmson and Leanne Hibbard beating Darren McNamara and Alistair Norris by 2.5 points. Bronze was won by Orkun Soyer and Ismail Inan in 28th position.

The club were very hospitable and apparently the 2's will be back to Chew next year. £1.90 a pint in the club bar proving an irresistible lure. However despite Pete Vincent going home for the evening the club ran out of rum. A lesson for next year perhaps – stock up the rum and please fill up the lake.

Overall Results:

PosFleetDivisionSail NoHelmCrewR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1stBlueGold1311Matt MeeEmma Norris3111(DNC)28
2ndWhiteGold1467Chris CattAlly Martin1‑221228
3rdPurpleGold962Andrew PetersJill Peters113(OCS)139
4thBlueGold822Eddie WhiteheadToby Lewis232(OCS)119
5thWhiteGold1285John TeagueNaomi Pound25‑734519
6thBlueGold1549Tim SaxtonFreya Adams56335‑1222
7thWhiteGold1508George YeomanSophie Ormsby‑1310123723
8thWhiteGold1237Dicken MacleanThe Man with no name!944(DNC)6124
9thPurpleGold634David JessopRenata Sapazinskaite43(DNF)421124
10thGreenGold1276Maria StanleyJohn Pinner55‑1749326
11thPurpleGold854Andy ShawPippa Horne72102‑15829
12thGreenGold831Thomas WrightLottie Clay34(DNS)114729
13thPurpleGold1515Daniel LewisMartin Lewis866‑115429
14thWhiteGold1423Steve JaneringChloe Sideris6.575‑1481339.5
15thWhiteSilver667Sam ThompsonLeanne Hibbard6.512‑1397640.5
16thBlueGold766Harry RoomePrue Room121356‑20541
17thGreenSilver1510Darren McNamaraAlistair Norris49‑16781543
18thPurpleGold1010Steve RestallKatie Restall6139(OCS)61044
19thGreenSilver848Nick MartindaleFreddie12121010‑13448
20thBlueSilver1072Neil BarrettSophie Jones15‑178513849
21stBlueSilver1004Charlie PoynerMag Fileman‑181548141051
22ndGreenSilver1466Dave SweetSophie Singleton158(DNF)137952
23rdGreenGold846Jeremy StephensCarolyn Royal2119(DNF)53654
24thBlueSilver1173Chris LarrAdam Larr91411911‑1754
25thPurpleSilver748Matt BromleyAndrea Bromley11‑15111411956
26thGreenSilver1451Tony FreerZach Freer1111121210‑1656
27thGreenGold1228Joe AdamsEvan Bradshaw‑222066121458
28thPurpleBronze465Orkun SoyerIsmail Inan13‑24127141460
29thBlueBronze1313James KempAmy Kemp248131212(DNC)69
30thWhiteBronze1278Adrian StellRoz Stell169141515‑1869
31stBlueSilver418Liz TeagueShaun Spring17‑191510171170
32ndWhiteGold1325Charlotte SavageMike Wood10(DNF)DNF8101274
33rdBlueGold1402Rob JaneringHugh Mehta(DNS)DNS71391376
34thPurpleBronze542John HarveyJulie Harvey‑1917815181977
35thPurpleSilver1263Julian BradleyHelen Cafferata237(DNF)16201783
36thBlueSilver1342Sarah GreenDavid Green‑21161820161888
37thGreenGold1229Rob StruckettSenem Cilingiroglu1810(DNF)1717DNF96
38thGreenBronze374Peter MiddletonDani Middleton2616(DNF)18191998
39thPurpleBronze1295Kevin DruceRachel Combes2026181721(DNC)102
40thWhiteSilver756Chris SandersPippa Hardman2420(DNF)241916103
41stPurpleBronze963Samuel J GrimshawRebecca Grimshaw27‑3016192221105
42ndGreenBronze685Gary LivinstonHannah Livinstone2827(DNF)161620107
43rdBlueBronze1548Andrew ClarkePeter Clarke1021(DNF)2123DNC109
44thGreenGold4Peter VincentVictoria Upton81420(DNC)DNCDNC110
45thWhiteBronze209Chris WilliamsEve Evans‑292417232422110
46thWhiteSilver376Sam JacklinEllie Gear2723(DNF)192120110
47thGreenSilver1468Karen SmallyNameless14251920(DNC)DNC112
48thWhiteSilver787Francis BucknallBenjamin Bucknall2322(DNF)DNC1815112
49thBlueSilver1246Oliver SloperEmma Lombard221114(DNC)DNCDNC115
50thGreenBronze1233John SpelmanPhil Phil Brook17229(DNC)DNCDNC116
51stWhiteSilver884Andrew SmithMichael Horne1918(DNF)22DNCDNC127
52ndPurpleBronze1132Peter LorettoLucy Loretto252115(DNC)DNCDNC129
53rdPurpleBronze832Peter AlveyAndy Connolly(DNS)DNSDNS182323132
54thPurpleSilver1509Paul TeaguePat Teague1618(DNF)DNCDNCDNC136
55thPurpleSilver1355Peter GrayClaire Lasko1423(DNF)DNCDNCDNC139
56thBlueBronze914Reuben WoodbridgeJ Woodbridge2826(DNF)DNC22DNC144
57thWhiteBronze346Roger GibbJo Gibb2025(DNF)DNFDNCDNC147
58thGreenBronze1516Martin StubbsYvonne Smith32(DNF)DNF21DNCDNC155
59thWhiteBronze489Dave StubbsMx Whittome2528(DNF)DNCDNCDNC155
60thWhiteBronze1409Claire JamesLucy Gibson3127(DNF)DNCDNCDNC160
61stGreenBronze1330Pete HadrellFlea Hadrell3028(DNF)DNCDNCDNC160
62ndPurpleBronze1406Simon ThomasRufus Thomas2929(DNF)DNCDNCDNC160
63rdBlueBronze227Ian CleverClaire Overstall26(DNF)DNFDNCDNCDNC162
64thPurpleBronze959Nick GatehouseWill Gatehouse30(DNF)DNFDNCDNCDNC166
65thBlueBronze1105Karen LarrAbigail Larr(DNS)DNSDNSDNCDNCDNC170

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