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Streaker Northern Paddle Open at Girton Sailing Club

by SCOA 23 Sep 2014 12:54 BST 20 September 2014

On Saturday 20th September the Streaker Northern Paddle Series sponsored by Sail Register visited Girton Sailing Club. After a full week of drab overcast days and no wind, Saturday was relatively bright and sunny with initially a light northerly breeze, which thankfully increased in strength, up to a nice force 3 through the day. 12 visiting Streakers joined the 3 home boats for the day.

Race 1 started in the lightest breeze of the day, on a heavily port bias start line. Paul Jago (Attenborough SC) port tacked the start from the pin end to lead up the 1st beat and around the 1st mark. He was closely followed by Alan Gillard (Sheffield Viking), James Wilson (Loughborough Uni) and Dave Smith (Welton SC), Alan slipped to 4th before the gybe mark. Down the long run virtually the length of the lake Dave Smith moved into 1st place which he held to the finish. Paul lost out to James, Alan and Ian Bradley (Ouse Amateur SC) when he sailed into a clump of weed. Even so such was the vagaries of the wind, shallow water and weed that by the finish Paul had recovered to finish 3rd with James claiming 2nd, Alan 4th and Ian 5th.

Race 2 after lunch, was held in slightly more wind again starting from a line which the fleet could hardly cross on starboard. This led to a few calls of starboard as boats attempted to tack away for the 1st leg. Alan Gillard followed by James Wilson took the lead at the first mark. Behind John Hollis (Pennine SC) and Ian Bradley where clear of the rest of the fleet down the 1st run. This race was much shorter than race 1 mainly because of the increase in wind as the race progressed. Alan won in the end comfortably from James, who was closely followed across the line by Ian, and John.

It was still all to play for, James had 2 seconds against Alan's 1st and a 4th and Dave Smith could not be discounted either with a 1st and 7th. Even though the race officer shifted the outer distance mark the start line for Race 3 was still heavily biased. Alan had this sorted though and was 1st to tack onto port to lead away from the line. Chris Wright (Ripon SC) also made a good start along with James and Dave Smith. Alan's lead was shortened by the fleet when he lost wind going down the run and onto the 3rd leg of the course where there was a wind shadow from the shore. Alan retained the lead, but James and Chris Wright were in close attendance. Alan and James pulled clear, for their own private little battle, this was until the vital downwind mark where Alan claimed water on James; James in giving water sailed into the weed and then lost wind in the lee of the shore. This allowed Alan to claim 1st place and the meeting with James finishing 2nd with the most consistent set of results for the day. Chris held onto 3rd and Paul Jago coming through to take 4th.

Overall Results: (top six)

1st Alan Gillard (Sheffield Viking) 2pts
2nd James Wilson (Loughborough Uni) 4pts
3rd Paul Jago (Attenborough SC) 7pts
4th Dave Smith (Welton SC) 8pts
5th Ian Bradley (Ouse Amateur) 8pts
6th Chris Wright (Ripon SC) 9pts

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