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Kestrel National Championship at Thorpe Bay Yacht Club

by Chris Grice 22 Aug 2018 13:53 BST 11-14 August 2018

The 2018 Kestrel Nationals took place at Thorpe Bay Yacht Club from 11th to 14th August. 28 competitors experienced the full range of conditions, from a flat calm on Saturday, causing racing to be abandoned, to a breezy, bouncy, 25 knot gusts Sunday, with a wind over tide chop.

Winners of the event were Gordon Miller, coming back for his 2nd title with a mere 26 years in between, crewed by John Ellingham, who has won so many Kestrel Nationals as crew he must have lost count by now. They were sailing 1460, The Menace, Boat Show Boat in 1988 and one of only two Gmach built foam floored Kestrels ever made – still as fast as ever.

With no sailable wind on Saturday, by Sunday a fresh WSW breeze had set in, and with 4 races needed to catch up on the lost day, racing got under way in a choppy sea. On a starboard biaised line, Gordon and John set the tone for the event, making the best start, picking the shifts and being well ahead at the windward mark. Behind them a battle for second between Malcolm and Danielle Worsley in 1638, Paul Barnett and David Philps in 1633 and Chris Grice and Howie Enkel in 408 was settled when Chris/Howie capsized and Malcolm/Danielle pulled clear of Paul/David. Gordon/John t missed the shortened course flag after two laps, and by the time they had doubled back four boats had already finished, with Malcolm/Danielle taking the win from Steve Worf and David Hearsum in 1545.

Race 2 and Gordon/John made no mistakes, taking the lead from the off and winning comfortably from Steve and David in second with Paul and David third again.

Gordon and John, were DQ'd under the Black Flag in Race 3, Paul/David, showing great downwind pace, took this race from the USA/Welsh combo of Larry King and Richard Roberts in 1639, Steve and David coming in third.

With the Thames now starting to ebb fiercely, several boats took the opportunity to get over-acquainted with the windward mark in Race 4. Not Gordon and John, who took the lead from the off, with Malcolm /Danielle and Chris/Howie hard on their heels, finishing in that order.

Monday dawned with big shifts and changes in strength as thunderclouds rolled through, making the RO's job a nightmare. Malcolm and Danielle had a good battle with Gordon/ John and won Race 5 with Paul/David third. Steve/David broke a shroud in a collision, just managing to limp back to the beach without losing the mast. Fortunately for them, the shifting winds delayed the next start long enough for them to replace the shroud in time for Race 6. No sooner had the race started than the wind shifted again, so that the windward mark could now be reached in one tack. This made the race a procession, with Dusty/John heading the train from Chris/Howie and Malcolm/Danielle.

Race 7, and with the ebb starting to set and light wind it was clear that it would be the last race of the day. Gordon/John lead around the first triangle, but at the leeward mark the wind dropped really light and boats struggled to make way against the tide. Some went right towards the shore, but when the wind filled in it came down the middle, so Steve/David, who had been buried, lead at the windward mark. Gordon /John passed Steve/David on the run to take another win with Paul and Katherine Wilkinson in 1605 following them to the line.

Race 8 had great conditions, a steady force 4. Gordon/John lead away, gamely pursued by Chris/Howie, with a long battle for third finally won by Malcolm/Danielle.

With Gordon/John already National Champions the last race was technically a dead rubber, but they still gave it the treatment, to win from Malcolm/Danielle, with Paul and Sally Gray in 1600 coming through for third.

Overall, a very good championship – many thanks due to the team at TBYC for hosting the event and running it so well.

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

PosSail NoBoat NameHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9Points
11460The MenaceGordon MillerJohn EllinghamLakeside SC‑51(BFD)1211118
21638ShadesMalcolm WorsleyDannielle WorsleyRoyal Tay YC1‑84213‑53216
31633PurplePaul BarnettDavid PhilpsRoyal Tay YC331534‑6‑8423
4408ChickenChris GriceHowie EnkelMaylandsea Bay SC‑1056342‑82628
51545Miss NomerSteven WorfDavid HearsumCalshot SC223‑9(BFD)526929
61639RedLarry KingRichard RobertsSaratoga Lake SC USA4‑9266‑774534
71600Pooh SticksPaul GraySally GrayMaylandsea Bay SC74788‑9‑115342
81636RarebirdAlasdair HoodIan HunterRTYC6657‑1064‑9842
91408Go Dog GoGlenn EnkelCelie Broomfield ‑878458‑107746
101605In the RedPaul WilkinsonKatherine WilkinsonMaylandsea Bay SC11121111(BFD)123‑131070
111553UpPeriscopeIan RintoulHarry RintoulBroxbourne‑1210910910‑14101270
121062Pure GeniusKarin GriceKate LloydMaylandsea Bay SC9‑1310127‑1413111173
131640White DiamondAdam LomasI StevensonPaphos International SC1311(DNC)(DNC)12119121381
141594Red OctoberMichael BurkeLou HartSutton Bingham SC14(DNS)(DNC)DNC111312141493

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