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Zhik 2021 Season 2 LEADERBOARD

Charles Stanley Cowes Classics Week - Day 4

by Marina Johnson 24 Jul 2014 21:40 BST 21-25 July 2014

It was a day of mixed fortunes on the Solent today for the Harken Race Day of the Charles Stanley Cowes Classics. A reasonable breeze enabled prompt windward starts to get away on the laid mark courses from the four committee boats which each look after their selected classes, all of whom were designed before 1970.

The Slow Division in the Classic Cruiser Class were less lucky. Their start off the line of the organising club, the Royal London Yacht Club, was a slow struggle to the east against a strong tide. After half an hour of racing, the committee chose to abandon and restart them again to the west with a running start, where they went on to finish their race although the class suffered a number of retirements in the frustrating conditions but father and son Richard and Kit Hargreaves' Twister Sea Urchin got to the finish and won the day.

However, the course perfectly suited the Fast Cruisers. Mignon's Bob Fisher said "We played the tides to our best advantage and were able to open up a huge lead." Mignon kept into the Island shore passing Norris Point in the easier tide before going across to lay West Ryde Middle in one go, and easily won the race.

Further north in the Solent there was enough wind to give the Swallow class a lively start in their first race. The keelboat, which was first used in the 1948 Olympic Games in Torquay, looks every bit as competitive today. Martin Jones's Swift continues to dominate the leader board as he led the fleet in both of the day's races to a clean sweep. The Solent Sunbeams and Flying Fifteens which shared their course were also pleased to get two races in the surprisingly good pressure.

A guest appearance was made today by the Seaview Mermaid class which sailed from the Sea View Yacht Club to join in the party. Sharing a course with the 8 metres and the Darings, together all three classes managed to complete two races despite the committee boat having to move as the wind went from 40 degrees at the first start to 80 degrees at the second and eventually 120 degrees at which point the committee finished all classes upwind. The Seaview Mermaids managed an upwind leg only, in each race but were happy to have got a piece of the action despite the conditions. The 8s got three rounds in on a triangular 'Olympic' course and the Darings two.

The Loch Long fleet, whose oldest boats are over 50 years old, and Bembridge One Design fleet, even older, all aged 77, were the luckiest of all. The two classes along with the Gaffers (whose oldest Chough dates from 1927) fitted in three races. Three different winners took honours in the Loch Long fleet putting Jonathan Chadd's Fingal at the top of the leaderboard while James Row took BOD No 8 to two wins. Chough's age has in no way slowed her – David Hopkins took all three wins today.

The series concludes tomorrow.

Thanks go to supporting sponsors Hudson Wight, Harken, Haines Boatyard, Winkworth, Cowes Harbour Commission, nms Adaptive, Kendalls, The Yachting Studio, and Classic Boat Magazine.

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