Please select your home edition
Edition
Wessex Resins 2019 - Pro-Set - 728x90

Solo Open at Maidenhead Sailing Club

by Jennifer Heward-Craig 26 Apr 2017 08:09 BST 23 April 2017

The wind was a fickle mistress at Maidenhead Sailing Club at Sunday's Solo Open, playing hide and seek throughout the day with sailors and race crew alike. The nineteen competitors, some backing up from competing at Burghfield the day before, spent most of the day chasing the fluky conditions, with those who could handle the lighter winds coming out on top.

After a postponement, Race 1 started well, with Tim Lewis (5561) barely ahead of the rest of the fleet, but by the second lap, he was clearly in front. Steve Jones (4741) took a contrary line across the top of the lake, positioning himself amongst the frontrunners, who had followed Lewis below the island. There followed a hard fought battle: Lewis and Richard Willetts (5726) changed lead a number of times, but with Willetts dropping off to fifth in the final lap, Lewis took first, with Andrew Boyce (5666) second. Local sailor Jon Hirsh (5189) – despite his back-of-the-fleet start – crossed third.

Post lunch, and the rumouredly southwesterly wind picked up to a Force 2. That meant some speed, but no direction, and the race crew moved from one end of the lake to the other in search of a decent beating start, only to move back when the wind shifted again. The first start was too tight, with sailors pushed over the line in the final seconds. One general recall later, and the boats got away cleanly. Lewis, Hirsh and Richard Ball (5595) broke away from the rest of the fleet early, and by the second lap, the fight for first place was between Lewis and Hirsh. Near the second windward mark, Lewis got into difficulties, giving Hirsh the lead, which he kept to the finish line. Lewis – troubles notwithstanding – was a close second, with Ball a distant third.

Starting the third race was a protracted affair. The constant shift of the wind meant that wherever the committee boat positioned itself, the bias was at the pin end. After the first general recall, the black flag went up, but, with the wind frisky, a second general recall had all but two of the boats returning to the start. The third start was clean, if not a little hesitant. By the first mark, Lewis was ahead again, closely harried by Willetts, Hirsh, and Ball. By the third mark, the fleet was strung out across the lake. Clean air on the high side of the lake gave Willetts a boost, bringing him to within a couple of boat lengths of Lewis. From there on, it was a battle for the top positions: Lewis v Willetts; Ball v Hirsh; Boyce v Chris Nash (4684). The wind died away, and Lewis's light weather skills gave him the final edge. He finished first, ahead of Willetts, with Hirsh just getting in ahead of Ball.

Once all the results were in, Lewis's nett total of 2pts edged out Hirsh's 4pts. With three sailors on a nett of 7pts, Willetts second in the last race gave him third overall.

With Godfrey Clarke out injured, this year's series could be anybody's!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1st5561Tim LewisIsland Barn SC1‑212
2nd5189Jon HirshMaidenhead SC‑3134
3rd5726Richard WillettsBurghfield SC5‑627
4th5666Andrew BoycePapercourt SC2‑557
5th5595Richard BallChipstead SC‑11347
6th5146Adam MeekingsMaidenhead SC4‑7711
7th4741Steve JonesLittleton SC74‑911
8th4684Chris NashMaidenhead SC8‑15614
9th4629Kevin HastingsMaidenhead SC68(BFD)14
10th4618Sacha MayhewMaidenhead SC‑109817
11th5168Jonathan OtterPapercourt SC9‑131019
12th5585James GladwynMaidenhead SC‑12101222
13th4454Stas LawickiPapercourt SC13‑161124
14th1483Joanne BarnesMaidenhead SC‑16111425
15th5265Rob TrendChipstead SC1412‑1526
16th5000Mark SavillMaidenhead SC‑15141327
17th5274Geoff BatchelderMaidenhead SC‑17171633
18th834Paul FletcherMaidenhead SC18‑191735
19th3897Denise FergusonMaidenhead SC(DNC)18BFD38

Related Articles

Papercourt Solo Open
The sun comes out after some very soggy rigging The Papercourt Solo Open 2020 started with a downpour making for soggy rigging. However, once briefed and launched the sun came out and the breeze clicked in from the South West. Posted today at 5:20 pm
Solo Western Area Open at Salcombe
Blessed with a brisk, if not refreshing, airstream Breaking with convention this report will thank first everyone, if not by name, by sentiment, involved in the excellent organisation of the National Solo, Western Area Championship held at Salcombe Yacht Club over the weekend. Posted on 12 Oct
Solos at Royal Harwich
After a damp start things only got better Finally, the Solos organised a "distanced gathering" at Royal Harwich together with the Laser fleet. Anyone leaving their bed on Saturday morning through the bleak grey morning rain to make the journey to come racing must have questioned their sanity! Posted on 6 Oct
Dell Quay Solo Open
25 boat entry limit quickly booked up The Dell Quay Solo Open has always been a firm favourite amongst the Solo travellers, and this year was no exception. Open meetings have been in short supply this year, and with entries limited to 25 boats the event was quickly booked up. Posted on 5 Oct
Solos at Island Barn Reservoir
Race Officer flexes his muscles and raises the Jolly Roger Island Barn limited entries to 20 boats for the Solo Open meeting, filling the quota two days before the meeting. With the cold wind and at least one sailor having to isolate at the last minute racing got under way with sixteen boats on the line. Posted on 26 Sep
Minima Annual Regatta
First club in this neck of the Thames to hold a regatta during COVID The turnout for Minima's 2020 Regatta was good with 22 sails, bearing in mind that many double-handers are off the water due to social distancing. Minima is the first club in this neck of the Thames to actually hold a regatta in the year of Covid-19. Posted on 7 Sep
2020 Solo Club Racing Championships
Racing across the country in a safe socially distanced manner With the 2020 Solo National championship cancelled, like many others due to the Covid 19 pandemic, the Class Association were keen to find ways of keeping its members engaged during these restricted times. Posted on 25 Jul
Are you ready to go Solo?
With current guidelines the obvious choice is single-handed sailing Guidance currently tells us we are allowed back on the water – if we can do it responsibly and while exercising social distancing. To many that could mean the obvious choice is single-handed Solo sailing. Posted on 7 Jul
Magic Marine & North Sails Solo National Club Race
Socially distanced racing at a national and club level While many clubs consider how they can most safely restart sailing, the National Solo Class has a solution which not only allows local club sailors to participate remotely in a National event, but also to sail around a course set at local level. Posted on 28 Jun
Solo Class National Club Race Event
Something for the class to look forward to in July With so many events having been cancelled in 2020, the National Solo Class Association were keen to find a way to give all its members something else to look forward to. Posted on 30 May