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Autumn Trophy 2015 at Clevedon Sailing Club

by Martin Gibson 19 Oct 2015 08:05 BST 18 October 2015

After being rescheduled due to lack of wind, this year's Autumn Trophy took place on 18th October. Although the north-east breeze provided a reasonable wind offshore conditions along the shore were very variable and shifty. Race Officer Stuart Butter set a large course with the beat back to the start line from a seaward mark off Wains Hill.

Twins James and Anthony Willcocks (Fireball) showed the fleet a clean pair of heals from the start leading from start to finish ahead of parents Andy and Andrea (Fireball), Richard White (Phantom) and Robin Goff (D Zero). Phil Isaac capsized at the first gybe and spent the race recovering. Conditions proved too trying for Stuart Turner and Trevor Baker (Scorpion) and Tony and Scarlet Cherry (Tasar) who both retired after race 1. Goff took the race on handicap with the Willcocks 2nd and Grace Cherry (Topper) 3rd.

Race 2 started at high water leading to different tactics. The Willcocks twins led again from the start together with Paul Sheldon (Laser) with Goff steadily pulling back through the fleet from an indifferent start. By the beginning of the second beat the inshore tide was ebbing and the leading boats headed shoreward to tack up the coast in slacker water. Whether by inspiration or luck Martin Gibson (Laser) stayed out in the stronger, cleaner wind passing both Phantoms and finishing just behind Andy and Andrea's Fireball. Gibson took 1st place on handicap with Goff 2nd and the Willcocks 3rd.

By race 3 the tide was ebbing strongly and staying out wasn't an option. After their third good start of the day James and Antony again led with Phil Isaac and Robin Goff in hot pursuit. The slower handicap boats struggled against the tide in the fickle conditions, gradually falling further behind. Willcocks took 1st place on handicap with Goff 2nd and Isaac 3rd.

With 3 different race winners the overall result was a close run thing. Willcocks and Goff both tied with 3 points, both having a 1st and a 2nd place, leaving the result to be decided by who did best in the last race. Prizes were presented by Vice Commodore Ian Hotchkiss while competitors enjoyed a curry and liquid refreshment.

Overall Results:

1st Robin Goff (D-Zero)
2nd James and Anthony Willcocks (Fireball)
3rd Martin Gibson (Laser)

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