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Gul GP14 World Championship at Mount's Bay Sailing Club - Day 1

by Michelle Evans 29 Jul 2018 20:21 BST 29 July - 3 August 2018
A warm welcome at the 2018 Gul GP14 Worlds, despite the gale force winds © Michelle Evans

After a six-week heat wave it was fitting that the start of the school holidays, and the start of the Gul 2018 GP14 World Championship, should start with ripping squalls and rain showers.

Regardless of the weather, there was a good buzz in the clubhouse as we registered. With 35 sponsors it took quite a while to hand out all of the goodies with SP Boats, Elite Sails, P&B, Gingerboats, English Braids, Yachts and Yachting Magazine, Primal Supplements, Goacher Sails all providing competitors with freebies.

Some of the top boys had been doing some practice in other classes leading into the event with Nick Craig winning the D-One Nationals earlier in the month and Ian Dobson getting some good preparation in the GP14 racing area and winning the Fireball Nationals last week.

With some boat fettling being done in between the squalls, the fleet was primed and ready and we headed for the opening ceremony, attended by Lord Lieutenant Edward Bolitho as well as Lord and Lady St Levan. With Mount's Bay SC Championship Chairman, David Howard kicking off proceedings, the ceremony consisted of the traditional exchange of flags.

The first to be presented was the class flag which was presented to Commodore Peter Brady by one of the Bajan competitors from the 2016 Worlds in Barbados, Jason Tindale. Other nationalities represented included Sri Lanka, Thailand, Poland and Northern Ireland with current National Champion Ian Dobson presenting the English flag.

After the ceremony we all enjoyed a free pasty and pint (with Sam Watson getting more than his fill!) and headed to bed. The night bought with it 50mph winds which for those of us camping proved noisy and problematic, trashing more than one tent.

Sunday morning did not look promising as we piled into the marquee for a briefing by RO Peter Jellis. With the sea state and high winds not allowing the RIBs to be retrieved from the Mount, racing was abandoned for the day and I headed off to buy a new tent! The rain did not dampen the atmosphere in the clubhouse or dinghy park as everyone caught up with each other. The forecast for the rest of the week looks good and three races are planned on Monday.

You can follow the coverage live by visiting the GP14 coverage page at www.gp14.org/worlds2018 or via the GP14 Facebook, Twitter and Instagram pages. There will be daily Facebook live posts as well as live race tracking through Sailing Southwest.

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