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18ft Skiff UK National Championship at Mount Batten Centre for Watersports - Day 1

by Tom Hill 11 Aug 2017 20:27 BST 11 August 2017

Today was the first day of the 18ft Skiff Nationals and whilst the ominous 25 knots forecast didn't materialise, it didn't stop some story-telling moments. The fleet are sailing from Mount Batten Watersports Centre and the three days racing is being run by an enthusiastic team from Plymouth Youth Sailing.

The first race was a shakedown for a couple of the crews who have been brought together to have a go for the national title. The teams on Sail 4 Cancer and AC Boatworks are both scratch crews for the event.

Rutland rounded first with a good set getting them clear, followed by ChameleonI and LED. Rutland managed to throw it all away by running over the gate and letting everyone through. ChameleonI sailed on to take the win.

Race two and the start was tight, so the fleet split to all get their own air. The Sound had a couple of large oil tankers to create options and decisions across the race course.

Rutland and LED lead the fleet around the first lap before getting entangled in a port/starboard incident which again let the fleet sail away. ChameleonI took line honours followed by AC Boatworks.

The final race was more of a pure race, with no incidents slowing boats down. ChameleonI managed to hold off the fleet again for another bullet. The wind swung round throughout the race, making the decisions ever-changing. AC Boatworks got the right call in the last downwind around the course obstacles to take another second place ahead of LED.

Back to the bar for beer - or ibuprofen - to chew the fat on the days racing incidences. Tomorrow's racing should be held on the big rigs and more boats will join to make it all to play for the national title.

Results after day 1:

PosBoatSail NoHelmR1R2R3Pts
1stChameleon I91Graham Bridle‑1112
2ndAC Boatworks30Anthony Chapman‑3224
3rdLED Energy43Steve McLean2‑335
4thRutland118Tom Hill‑5448
5thUnion ose115Alex Lewin4‑559
6thSail 4 Cancer0Jon Bradbury(DNC)DNCDNC14