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Rooster RS400 Southern Tour at Lymington Dinghy Regatta

by Annalise Nixon 11 Jul 09:19 BST 7-8 July 2018
RS400s at Lymington Dinghy Regatta 2018 © Peter Fothergill

As we drove down through the narrow streets of Lymington town memories of last year's fantastic Solent tidal sea breezes came flooding back. July 8th and 9th 2018 was set for the Lymington Dinghy regatta alongside the D-One UK nationals.

The first day started with a steady force three sea breeze with a sunbathingly balmy 27 degrees. A small but dedicated and competitive fleet of 8 boats hit the water ready to go for the targeted 3 but maybe 4 races. A smooth running shore crew expertly launched the fleet managing to avoid the Isle of Wight ferry. The tactics for the day were largely centred around the 2kt out-going tide through the course. Race one saw the fleet starting at the boat end of the startline and heading out right to try to escape the effects of the flowing tide, tacking back towards the mark at the layline. Sean/Annalise managed to get around the top mark in the lead, being chased down by the locals Kevin/Heather and fellow sea sailors Steve/Chris. A shortened course to two laps saw Sean/ Annalise hold onto the lead with Kevin/Heather and Steve/Chris followed closely behind.

Race two followed the daily tactic plan of going right up the course. Andy/Richard made an early decision to take advantage of the tide and tack early of the layline, while the rest of the fleet had to bear down towards the mark, bringing them up into 3rd around the top mark. This race was taken out by Steve/Chris showing lightening speed in the downwind. Apparently the secret is in the top notch kite work according to Chris!

Race three saw a tight battle between Mick/Sarah, Steve/Chris and Sean/Annalise with other classes including the musto skiffs and D1s compressing the fleet at the bottom mark roundings.

Race four for the day and everyone was starting to ache in the legs after a steady day of hiking. While the race officers kept everyone on their toes mixing up the shortened course flag after the first beat, resulting in Kevin/Heather sailing in after the first lap! To the rest of the sailors who didn't check the flags, we kept up the racing for another lap with Sean/Annalise, Steve/Chris and Dave and Sophie Stockton crossing the line respectively. Kevin and Heather had clearly heard about the post racing donuts and tea waiting for us ashore and were first in for the treat.

A fun relaxed evening was had in Lymington town sailing club, with a carvery and socialising with other classes.

Day 2 bought back memories of the recent Summer champs at Parkstone, with sweltering sunshine but very little breeze. After a postponement, by 1200hours the race team predicted a steady sea breeze approaching and we drifted out to the sailing course. We were all pleasantly surprised by the force 3 sea breeze that greeted us at the entrance of the river.

Race 5 started with a short postponement, then Kevin /Heather tried the port tack approach on the start, managing to expertly tangle Steve/Chris and Sean/Annalise. Again banging the right side of the course worked in favour, with Steve/Chris and Sean/Annalise battling it out until the very last upwind with a mark rounding that could have gone either way! With Sean/Annalise pipping the win.

The 6th and final race saw an increase in the breeze, with mast settings being changed quickly. Sean/Annalise attempted the left hand side resulting in a tough penalty having to battle the tide streaming through. The rest of the fleet took the favoured right side of the course, planing along towards the top mark. Steve/Chris taking out the win closely followed by Kevin/Heather and Dave/Sophie.

All in all it was a great weekend meeting some new fellow RS400 sailors from LTSC Steven Broomfield and Jonny Kimber, I think we have convinced them to come along and join the circuit! Well done to fellow 400 sailor Howard Farbrother finishing 5th in the D-One nationals. Looking forward to seeing everyone in a few weeks at Lee-on-the-Solent!

RS400 Results:

PosSail NoHelm Name:Crew Name:ClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st1377Sean ClearyAnnalise NixonOxford12111‑46
2nd1189Steve RestallChris StubbsDowns SC‑3122319
3rd1439Kevin PodgerHeather ChipperfieldLTSC23‑4DGA4214
4th1263Dave StocktonSophie StocktonWimbleball SC44‑532316
5th527Andy PowellRichard AshwellWarsash SC/Bartley5‑6656527
6th1479Mick WhitmoreSarah WhitmoreEastbourne Sovreign SC6534(DNC)DNC28
7th836Steven BroomfieldJonny KimberLTSC‑77767734
8th1236Mike BakerJune Baker (DNC)DNCDNCDNC5641
9th1101Simon BakerChris HopkinQMSC(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC50

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