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Musto Skiff Scottish Championship at Dalgety Bay Sailing Club

by Ben Yeats 6 Sep 2017 14:06 BST 2-3 September 2017

The Scottish Musto Skiff championship was held at Dalgety Bay Sailing Club on the weekend of 2nd/3rd of September.

On the Saturday, the race committee sensibly held the competitors onshore until a fickle Easterly breeze materialised. Race 1 was started in light and patchy wind with strong ebb tide. Jaimie Hilton rounded top mark first followed by Ben Yeats. Jono Shelley and Stuart Keegan soaked lower running against the tide to take the front in that order, while Hilton decided to go for wrong gate mark which pushed him down the pack. Shelley maintained his lead to win first race with Keegan and Yeats close on his heels for 2nd and 3rd.

For the second race the wind rose to F2-F3 for majority of the race. Yeats started on port and was first to get out right to the stronger ebb tide and was followed by Shelley in second place round mark one. A big factor was navigating through fleet of 50 or so boats sharing the same marks, which led to some dodgem moments (including a broken bowsprit for Kevin Holliday after a fourth in the first race). Yeats extended his lead to win, with Keegan closing in on the final lap for second place, and Shelley in the third.

Four races were held on the Sunday. Race three was started down at St David's Bay in a light and very patchy easterly breeze with strong flood tide on start line. Shelley made the best start and headed left to avoid the tide and pulled out a large lead. He was followed by Keegan and Hilton to take second and third respectively.

In race four the wind was still light and patchy with sailors in high trapeze mode upwind. Keegan dominated the race throughout followed by Shelley in 2nd. Jonathan Bailey was showing good speed and was close on the heels of Shelley right up to the finish only to capsize on the final gybe and let Yeats in for third place.

In race five some big gains could be made upwind from going out to the right and picking up large bands of wind – with flat wiring lifts. The pack was re-shuffled a number of times with Bailey leading for large parts of the race. Shelley somehow recovered from being over the line to take the win. Keegan made large gains downwind to recover from down the pack to second with Hilton in third place.

In the final race the wind rose to a very gusty F4. Hilton charged up the first beat and had a significant lead by the first downwind, only to be overhauled by Shelley and Keegan who managed to find richer seams of wind on the subsequent downwind legs. At the finish Shelley took the win from Keegan and Hilton, with Andrew Scott taking yet another fourth place. Overall for the Championship this meant that recent VX One Gold Cup winner Shelley was top of the Musto Skiff podium, with Keegan in second and Yeats in third.

Special mentioned for newcomer Aaron Murray from Loch Earn who showed very good speed all weekend and would have had third place in one of the races, had he not missed the shortened course. Ex 29ers sailors make a habit of doing well in the Musto Skiff and great to hear of the growing Musto Skiff fleet at Loch Earn.

A big thank you to all at Dalgety Bay sailing club for excellent event with great on and off the water support.

Overall Results:

1stJono ShelleyUllswater Yacht Club1‑312116
2ndStuart KeeganDerwent Reservoir SC‑2221229
3rdBen YeatsChanonry SC31‑634617
4thJamie HiltonDalgety Bay SC‑75363320
5thAndrew ScottDalgety Bay SC‑86447425
6thJonathan BaileyChanonry SC5(OCS)755527
7thAaron MurrayLoach Earn SC645‑76728
8thKevin HollidayChanonry SC4(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNC40

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