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National 12 Gul Series at Trent Valley Sailing Club

by Graham Cam 25 May 2018 06:32 BST 20 May 2018
National 12 Gul Series at Trent Valley © Kevan Bloor

It was a glorious sunny light wind day, perfect for some river sailing on the Trent. Five 12s enjoyed pitching their wits against the wind and each other.

The class chairman, Gerald Copsey, turned up just as the briefing finished but amazingly managed to rig and get to the start line exactly as the gun went, making the best start of the whole fleet. Team Camm borrowed Paul Turner's Perfect Kiss for the day and were just behind Gerald and Tania. Graham crewed by son Felix managed to sneak ahead at the first windward mark. The Camms pulled away on the long run up the river but John & Catherine Sears caught right up again as the fleet entered the infamous doldrums. On the long beat back from the top mark the fleet spread out a bit and the Camms used their light weight advantage to build up a lead and win the race, soon followed up by team Copsey and team Sears.

The course was shortened for race 2 and now included the renowned "Goddard chicane" positioned in front of the club house. With two extra buoys added the fleet were kept busy with mark roundings. The start was very tight will all boats very close to the line. Team Camm swapped crews and Anya was now in the front of Perfect Kiss. The Camms built a small lead by the first windward mark. Jonathan in Bicycle Clips was on course side at the start as he was still heading to the line. His delayed start didn't hurt though as by mid race he had made it through to second place. After several passes through the doldrums the fleet separated a little as the wind went round in circles picking off boats occasionally and carrying them through the doldrums. Team Sears steadily worked their way past Bicycle Clips to take second with the Camms taking first place.

After a fantastic lunch, provided by Lorna Orton, the fleet headed out for the final race. The race officer, James Dalby, used the same course again for the final race. Paul Turner had the best start and was on the line with speed despite having only just launched 30 seconds earlier. The fleet arrived at the first mark tightly placed. The wind died as the fleet rounded the mark with all the boats within inches of each other. The Camms (this time Zoe in the front) were the first boat to find wind. Team Sears found wind next and caught right up with the Camms when they got stuck in the doldrums. The Camms were first out of the doldrums and held the lead to the finish.

The day was rounded off with tea and cakes. Many thanks to Gul for their sponsorship of the event.

Overall Results:

1st Graham, Felix, Anya Camm and Zoe Ballantyne
2nd John & Catherine Sears
3rd Gerald & Tania Copsey
First vintage, Paul Turner

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