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International One Metre UK National at Fleetwood Marine Lake - Preview

by GBR IOM Class 23 Aug 2018 11:19 BST 25-27 August 2018
The International One Metre UK Nationals take place at Fleetwood this weekend © Damian Ackroyd

This weekend (25th-27th August) the country's best radio sailing skippers will descend on the legendary Fleetwood Marine Lake to battle for the International One Metre UK National Championship.

The class boasts an impressive full entry of 84 skippers travelling from throughout the country and abroad to contend this years title.

For many, Fleetwood MYPC is the spiritual home of both radio and vane sailing with the club being formed in early 1900's. In previous years the club has hosted a number of International and National events including the IOM European Championship on two occasions and three Marblehead World Championships. The credentials of the club and lake speak for themselves.

The 2018 Nationals continues another successful season for the class with large attendances seen at the two ranking weekends leading into this event with a number of faces new and old looking to make their mark at Fleetwood.

In attendance will be a total of 5 previous IOM World Champions, and an impressive number of both radio and full-size National Champions among a fleet of well credentialed and experienced campaigners.

Here we take a look through the main players for this weekend's event:

  • Rob Walsh – Fleetwood
    Previous World (2013) and 2 time National Champion
    A fine performance at the 2018 IOM Euros to finish on the podium yet again. As defending Champion, local boy Walsh will be looking to take this years title on home waters. Will be racing a Britpop design.

  • Chris Harris – Windrush
    Past radio A and Vane National Champion
    Showing good form with a top ten result at this year's European Championships. A very experienced skipper with a number of top finishes, Will this be the year Harris makes the top step? Don't bet against him. Will be racing a Britpop design.

  • Gavin Watson – West Cornwall
    A strong performer in recent years, Gavin has a number of ranking event podiums to his name in a relatively short time in the class since moving over from full size racing. He has earned a reputation of one who gets the job done, both on the water and off it as the UK IOM class captain.
    Will be racing a Sedici design from the pen of Giovanni Ceccarelli in Italy, best known for his work with the +39 Americas Cup programme.

  • Martin Roberts – Birkenhead
    Previous World (2001), European and National Champion
    Regarded as one of the best natural skippers in the fleet, Martin will be looking for a strong result at a favoured venue where he has tasted success in the past. Will he get the best from a borrowed Britpop or will it be another opportunity lost?

  • Graham Bantock – Chelmsford
    Previous two time World (1994,1999), European and National Champion
    One to watch, especially if the breeze goes light making him difficult to catch. Will be racing his own Akziom design.

  • Steve Landau – USA
    Steve arrives at Fleetwood having just secured the USA IOM Championship in San Diego. A no nonsense skipper who after a long break from the class to pursue Finn class racing, has returned with a bang and will be one to watch if he can settle quickly. Will be racing a Sedici

  • Mark Gollison – USA
    After starting in the class in 2015, Californian big boat sailor Gollison has put down a number of strong results including a strong top 10 showing at the 2015 Worlds in San Francisco. One who races clean and fast with little fuss and like Landau, could be one to watch if he comes to grips with the Fleetwood layout. Will be racing an Ian Vickers designed V9 from New Zealand.

  • Brad Gibson – Birkenhead
    Previous two time World (2007, 2015), European and National Champion
    Gibson returns after a break from IOM class racing to pursue flying in the Moth Class and other projects. As designer of the successful Britpop, he will be looking for a solid return on a lake he has enjoyed in the past. Listed as sailing an Alternative own design but word on the street has him down for an old favourite.
Racing will get underway at 10am on Saturday morning and will finish on Monday afternoon by 4pm.

If you are in the area why not come along, visitors will be made very welcome with the usual Fleetwood MYPBC clubhouse facilities available to all.

Further updates throughout the duration of the event will be available on the IOM class twitter feed @GBRIOM the class website gbriom.com & Club website fleetwoodmypbc.org.uk/2017/12/29/iom-national-championships-2018

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