Please select your home edition
Wetsuit Outlet 2019 - 728x90

XOD Wednesday Series at Royal Lymington Yacht Club - Race 12

by John Olliff-Cooper 12 Jul 2018 16:12 BST 11 July 2018

Oh, that all races might be held in such blissful conditions. A grand fleet of twenty-one XODs assembled under an azure sky with a steady ten or eleven knots out of the south-west – sublime. The feisty ebb tide was due to change at around 3 o'clock offering the prospect of some tactical anticipation, and the usual last ditch fleet of 'what the hell' fliers.

The course was excellent:
B. Pennington – starboard
E. Pylewell – port
C. Oxey – port
E. Pylewell – port
Finish at the Club Platform

Most of the fleet opted for the stronger tide on the outer distance mark, and that certainly paid off, with the added advantage of a 15 degree heading shift. At the windward mark Team Paton in X48 turned just ahead of X32 Ibex, X33 Clare De Lune, and X34 Mersa – three consecutive Newman yachts like ducks in a row. Then followed X9 Zest sailed by Phil and Jo Brewer, and Chris Torrens (crewed by yacht racing superstar Dave Bedford) in X5 Madcap.

The decision then to be made was whether to sail the shorter rum-line to E, or to sail the longer but less tide-blighted course, inshore. The latter course proved to be much the better way, with skippers choosing not to interfere with each-other's wind in order to get clean away from the chasing fleet. That left the direct line sailors, notably X48 and Eric Williams in X34 Mersa, with a fair bit of catching-up to do. X32 Ibex also lost ground by staying too far out in the adverse tide.

At Pylewell mark X9 had built a fine lead, with X5 Madcap, X87 Excalibur, X72 Venus and X156 Gleam, in pursuit.

The beat to Oxey mark resulted in little change at the front of the fleet, although the tidal change to a west-going flood was just beginning to make itself felt as yachts turned towards the starting gate, and thence again to Pylewell mark. The order was X9, X5, X87, X156, X72, X48, and X32 Ibex. And that's where tidal matters became interesting – wonderful for some, and the dastardly intercedence of a vengeful god for others.

Turning Pylewell and heading for the finishing line, the leaders headed away from the shore on the assumption that the new flooding tide would be strongest inshore. They were wrong. XL and Ibex both headed shoreward and brilliantly overhauled the entire leading group except Zest. But it was a darned close thing. At the line Zest won, decisively and deservedly; 2nd was XL just ONE SECOND ahead of Ibex, who was in turn just FOUR SECONDS ahead of Excalibur, who had overhauled Madcap.

Yacht racing really doesn't get much better. XODs are fantastic yachts to sail, and on such a day, life can feel very sweet.


1st – X9 Zest – Phil and Jo Brewer
2nd – X48 XL – Rory Paton
3rd – X32 Ibex – Paul Woodman and Ollie James
4th – X87 Excalibur – John Olliff-Cooper and Dunlop Stewart
5th – X156 Gleam – James Meaning
6th – X5 Madcap – Chris Torrens

Full results can be found here.

Related Articles

Hamble Classics Regatta moves to the RAFYC
A superb Hamble yachting venue with excellent waterside facilities The Hamble Classics team of Jonty Sherwill and Vicki Weston are delighted to announce that the 2019 Hamble Classics Regatta is to be hosted by the Royal Air Force Yacht Club in Hamble. Posted on 6 Feb
International Paint Poole Regatta 2020
Classes already committing to the event The International Paint Poole Regatta 2020 is still 17 months away, but that has not stopped many sailing classes committing to making Poole a significant event in their 2020 racing calendars. Posted on 24 Jan
Last Chance to Enter for Super Early Bird Discount
Lendy Cowes Week deal ends midnight on the 11th It's the final few days of Super Early Bird! (ends at midnight 11th January). Don't miss out on discounted entry fees and the chance to win the following prizes... Posted on 9 Jan
Lendy Cowes Week Entries Open
Fees have been held at last year's levels The team at Lendy Cowes Week are delighted to announce that entries are now open for the 2019 regatta. Our Super Early bird discounts end at midnight on 11th January, and entry fees have been held at the same levels as 2018. Posted on 22 Dec 2018
Tricky final Lymington XOD Wednesday race of 2018
Light and variable wind with a strong ebb tide A light and variable, mainly Northerly breeze and a strong spring ebb tide made for difficult conditions for both RO John Whyte and the 13 boats out on a warm sunny afternoon. Posted on 29 Oct 2018
Lymington XOD Autumn Series race 1
One of those glorious autumn days Lymington XODs' Autumn series got underway on one of those glorious autumn days where the light has a special quality, illuminating the land features such that the Spinnaker Tower in Portsmouth is clearly visible from Lymington. Posted on 6 Oct 2018
Lymington XOD Wednesday Series Race 22
Race team do well again with a very tricky wind Once again, congratulations are due to the race team for laying a sailable course in very tricky conditions with light 4k not South Westerly wind. Posted on 4 Oct 2018
Hamble Classics Regatta
Third time is even luckier The third Hamble Classics Regatta hosted by the Royal Southern Yacht Club, over the weekend of 15-16 September, was another stunning success with 75 classic and spirit of tradition yachts entered for two days of racing in sunshine and breeze. Posted on 19 Sep 2018
Lymington XOD Saturday Series Race 20
The hunt for the trophy could not have been closer Going into the penultimate race of the Saturday XOD series, the hunt for the trophy could not have been closer. Paul Woodman and Ollie James' Ibex and Rory Paton's XL started the race level on points, with XL's worst discard a second place. Posted on 17 Sep 2018
Lymington XOD Wednesday Series Race 19
Somewhere near Yarmouth! The unenviable task of setting a course in a variable Northerly breeze for the 20 XODs starting Wednesday's race fell to Race Officer Alistair Wilson who clocked the wind speed from 2 to 11 knots with a full 90 degrees of unpredictable direction change! Posted on 11 Sep 2018