Please select your home edition
Rooster 2020 - Impact BA - LEADERBOARD

Ajax National Championships at St. Mawes Sailing Club

by John Howard 31 Jul 2018 21:29 BST 27-29 July 2018

Day 1

A light southerly breeze greeted the fourteen entries including two visiting yachts from Royal Harwich Yacht Club: Polly Oliver, the 2017 national champion, and Telemon.

Race 1 - a clean start found Artemis, Persephone and Nemesis reach the windward mark first and a downwind scrap between Persephone and Nemesis let Artemis get some clear air and stretch away, Polly Oliver, Kali and Mary B completed the top spots.

Race 2 - Again Artemis had a clean start and stretched away into the lead, pushing the right hand side of the course, followed closely by Pintail, Polly Oliver and Telemon. Nemesis rounded the first leeward mark in the back markers and were forced left up the second beat, they pushed it to the limit, found some extra breeze and managed to round the windward mark in first place, a great tussle down the last run between them, Artemis and Pintail saw them take a well earned win, Artemis in second and Pintail third. Polly Oliver, Persephone and Kali rounded out the top six.

Race 3 - The breeze had picked up for the last race to a nice force 4 and there was now a slightly confused swell which was not lining up with the wind.

The start was not quite clean with a couple of boats over early including Persephone who had enjoyed the class captain in Redoubtable seeing an opportunity to cause a kerfuffle on the start line. The result was that Persephone started last off the line and pushed right on the course, rapidly catching up the fleet to fifth at the top mark, Artemis led once again with Mary B, Nemesis, Polly Oliver, Aeolus, and Telemon all in the mix. An early gybe from Persephone paid off and they moved up to second behind Artemis at the leeward mark.

Up the second beat and Artemis pushed right, Persephone tried to do something else - which didn't pay and Mary B managed to sneak through into second. On the final run Artemis extended away for their second bullet, another early gybe from Persephone paid off and saw them pass Mary B and Nemesis climbed up to fourth in front of Polly Oliver and Aeolus.

Overall - Artemis were sitting pretty on 4 points, Nemesis were second on 8 pts, and Persephone were on 9, all to play for but it doesn't look like the forecast is being kind after months of blue skies and nice force 2/3 we are set for plenty of breeze over the next two days!

Day 2

Solid 25-30 kts base windspeed with gusts in the 40s, throughout the day forced a seven hour postponement just in case the wind died away and we could get a race or two in...

Unfortunately at 4pm we were still recording base above 25kts and gusts in the mid 30s so the Race Officer Neil Andrew made the hard decision to abandon for the day.

Day 3

After a two hour postponement Neil Andrew and his race management team on board Melkin managed to get some racing underway to complete the series. The anemometer on Black Rock Beacon recorded everything from 10 kts all the way up to 36 kts - which was pretty fresh!

The course was laid with a windward mark under the lee of Pendennis Castle and the start line down by Vilt.

Six boats braved it to the start line and remarkably suffered no serious damage - a testament to the solidity of the class. With many of the rest of the fleet sailing from Castle Drive where none of them missed a shift and, I'm sure, many laughs were had at the expense of the sailors out on the water!

Race 4 - Another fantastic start by Artemis let them stretch away, Nemesis and Persephone tangled on the start line and both had to restart, At the windward mark the twin pole system on Artemis was really proving its worth without the necessity of putting a crew on the foredeck for the gybe and they seemlessly stretched away. The first run gave all the boats an idea of how testing the gybe was going to be and Mylor Riggers on Nemesis sailed some really great lines which saw some big surfs and exciting speeds on the approach to the leeward mark. At the end of the second beat Artemis was away and gone, cementing their first place for the series.

Mary B had some spectacular broaches while attempting their gybe, Persephone decided to have a relaxing run, goose winged the jib, watched the drama unfold, sailed straight to the leeward mark and finish to claim second. Mary B managed to get the mast back above the boat and held on for third, Nemesis was fourth, The light weight crew on Kali did brilliantly to come through in fifth and Telemon with a combined crew age of 195 completed the course in sixth.

Race 5 - Artemis once again nailed the start, shutting out Persephone who by now was getting dizzy with the amount of times she had done circles at the starts. The rest of the fleet sorted the placings out in the ridiculous conditions, coping with violent gusts and 30 degree shifts which made the sailing taxing in the extreme. Artemis once again sailing magnificently in the conditions led the fleet.

Persephone, Mary B and Nemesis were all pretty close, Mary B had decided enough was enough with the spinnaker and were white sailing from now on, but they were going fast up the beats. Persephone had decided enough was enough with gybing but were flying the kite with a port pole down the vast majority of the run. Nemesis were going for it sailing some great angles and making big gains with a gybe in some big conditions. At the leeward mark Artemis was once again away and gone with great spinnaker work, Persephone was second Mary B third and Nemesis fourth.

On the last beat Mary B pushed hard left while the rest of the fleet were mainly right and for a while they looked really good, but at the top it all evened out and places remained as at the leeward mark. The last run saw Nemesis again sail some great angles and catch some lovely waves to over take Mary B and get within half a boat length of passing Persephone, but the Leeward mark was there, Persephone had the inside and managed to finish marginally ahead of Nemesis. At this point first, second and third places were confirmed so the race officer canned it for the day and the series and we all headed home.

Huge congratulations to Artemis - only counting first places - fantastically sailed.

Overall Results:
If you finished in the top ten at the Ajax nationals then enter your Gear Guide information here

PosBoatSail NoHelmR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1stArtemis21Paul Scullion1‑21114
2ndPersephone33John Howard2‑52228
3rdNemesis22Dan Teubert31‑44311
4thMary B42Rob Mathewson6‑933416
5thKali45Marianne Bryan56‑125622
6thTelemon61Gordon Sutton‑11776525
7thPolly Oliver17M Clayton/B Portway445(DNC)DNC29
8thPintail36Richard Bown738(DNC)DNC34
9thAeolus47Robin Richardson886(DNC)DNC38
10thOsprey37Simone Kennett9129(DNC)DNC46
11thAquila53Lindsey Thomas101110(DNC)DNC47
12thAchilles48Richard Townshend121011(DNC)DNC49
13thVictory19Mike Black141413(DNC)DNC57
14thRedoubtable32Hereward Tresidder1313(RET)DNCDNC58
15thVim46Alex Kennedy(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNC64

Related Articles

Ajax class at Falmouth Week
One knitting pattern of a course that would have baffled Tom Daley Westerly breeze that varied between F3 and F5 led to an interesting conundrum for the race officer with an ever-increasing incoming southerly spring tide, the result was a knitting pattern of a course that would have baffled Tom Daley. Posted on 17 Aug 2021
Ajax Nationals at St. Mawes
A breezy start to the event as Storm Evert barrelled up the north Cornwall coast The morning of Friday July 30th was somewhat inclement, Storm Evert was barrelling up the north Cornwall coast and the wise decision from the race officer was to postpone for 3 hours before setting out into the bay. Posted on 5 Aug 2021
Ajax East Coast Championship at Royal Harwich
Four different race winners in the 5 race series Thirteen boats entered the 2021 East Coast Championships for the class sailed in Dovercourt Bay on the 17th and 18th of July. The weekend had light winds and sunshine and over the five race series there were 4 different race winners. Posted on 22 Jul 2021
Ajax Nationals at Harwich
Defending champions from St Mawes join nine local boats The defending champions from St Mawes joined nine local boats for the eight race series sailed in Dovercourt Bay, Harwich. The St Mawes crew chartered Mandalay, one of the three Ajax's donated to the Royal Harwich Yacht Club earlier in the year. Posted on 24 Sep 2019
Ajax class at Falmouth Week 2019
An incredibly testing week with big breeze and unstable winds An incredibly testing week with big breeze and unstable winds meaning very hard work for helms and crews alike. Posted on 19 Aug 2019
Falmouth Week offers a new range of options
A shorter event for Bay fleet boats that can't do a whole 7 days The group that organise Falmouth's annual festival of sailing are set to make some radical changes for this year's event set to take place from August 11-17. Posted on 18 Jan 2019
Ajax East Coast Championship
Held at Royal Harwich Yacht Club over the weekend The Royal Harwich Yacht Club held the Ajax class East Coast Championship on 1st and 2nd of September using Shotley Marina as the base. The first day's racing sailed in brilliant sunshine in Dovercourt Bay. Posted on 3 Sep 2018
Ajax class at Falmouth Week 2018
A stunning performance from the team on Polly Oliver Huge congratulations to the crew of Polly Oliver for a stunning performance throughout week. Posted on 20 Aug 2018
Ajax Nationals at Royal Harwich
Nine teams sail in Dovercourt Bay There were nine entries for the 2017 Ajax class championships sailed in Dovercourt Bay, Harwich from 16th to 18th June. Conditions were ideal for racing in the bay with the first day providing a shifty west north west wind from the shore. Posted on 22 Jun 2017
Birketts Decanter at Royal Harwich
An increasingly competitive event The annual Birketts Decanter sailing event run by law firm Birketts LLP took place on 15 September 2015 at Royal Harwich Yacht Club. Posted on 21 Sep 2015