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British Moth 'Bake Off' at Mid Warwickshire Yacht Club

by Martin Seaton 3 Apr 2016 19:13 BST 2 April 2016
Toby Cooper at the British Moth Bake Off at Mid Warwickshire YC © Jayne Whigham

Take one small family friendly sailing club on a tiny reservoir in leafy Warwickshire, a drop of sunshine, a nice breeze, sprinkle on a large helping of quirky scows with a heritage that can be traced back to the 1930s along with an equally "interesting" bunch of sailors that must be fed cake and you have the recipe for a perfect day!

Mid Warwickshire Yacht Club (yes it's a silly name but we love it) based on Willes Meadow Reservoir Leamington Spa once again hosted the British Moth season opener for their travellers' series. Thirteen visitors joined four boats from the home club ensuring that the race team, safety boat crew, shore crew and galley slaves were all working at 110% for the whole of the day.

Once the boats were cleared from the landing stage (none of this getting up to your knees in water malarkey) the first race got underway. A clean start saw Mr Blaze himself, Mike Lyons a recent Moth convert, from Burghfield reach the windward mark first. The vagaries of MWYC wind soon put paid to any hope of him retaining the top spot and Toby Cooper from Broxbourne who, shall we say, has a bit of previous form in this class and making his first appearance at MWYC sneaked through to quickly build up a lead that was unassailable.

The fluky winds were also blamed on an early bath for Ian Haywood from Frampton eventually necessitating outside assistance and a change from wetsuit to drysuit for the rest of the day which just got warmer and warmer! As is often the case the interesting tactical stuff was to be had at the head of the chasing pack and Tim Davidson, Colin Hall and the aforementioned Mike Lyons provided the entertainment. Best finishing strategy of the race (and the day) was by Jen Bentley from Maidenhead who capsized at the last rounding mark and cleared the finishing line upturned in her classic Moth which dates back to 1973!

In race 2 Mike Lyons was first away from the start line again clearly demonstrating that the new kid on the block is a force to be reckoned with and managed to hold the lead for a couple of laps with Toby Cooper in hot pursuit. Cooper took his chance at the windward mark on lap 3 and by the eighth passing of the "Doghouse" (race control) he was half a lap ahead of boat no 2 Roger Witts from Frampton who is normally no slouch at this event and picking off the back markers one by one before taking the gun.

With the chocolates safely in the bag Toby Cooper rested his boat for Race 3 along with a few others who were starting to flag in the building winds. Tim Davidson from Medley took his chance and built up an impressive lead which he held until the finish leaving 2nd place to fellow club mate Toby Smith and 3rd to Tony Latham from Frampton.

The boats were quickly removed from the water, packed up and everyone repaired to the bar for the Bake Off and beer! The prizes were dished out, usual pleasantries and thanks exchanged (unusually Roger Witts will have to save his winner's speech for another time!).

Finally, as the cheery travellers set off for home, peace and tranquillity returned to the little club with the funny name.

The Victoria Sponge was the clear winner but if you really must know the sailing results they were...

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3
1887Toby CooperBroxbourne11DNS
2892Tim DavidsonMedley231
3890Roger WittsFrampton on Severn 625
4786Mike LyonsBurghfield344
5846Toby SmithMedley772
6856Colin HallHunts456
7880Tony LathamFrampton on Severn1183
8883Abby FreelyHunts598
9882Gary TompkinsHunts967
10888Peter LeeMid Warwickshire YC8129
11871Ian HaywoodFrampton on SevernR181010
12886Elaine LavertyMid Warwickshire YC1011R14
13815Tom BillyardMid Warwickshire YC131411
14847Simon HallMaidenhead1213DNS
15818Jennifer Heward CraigMaidenhead151212
16432Pamela CoopMid Warwickshire YC1415DNS
17700Jennifer BentleyMaidenhead16R18DNS

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