Please select your home edition
Product Feature
The Catamaran Book by Brian Phipps
The Catamaran Book by Brian Phipps
Boat Insurance from Noble Marine

Full racing risks
New for old cover

Sprint 15 TT at the Royal Western Yacht Club

by Ed Tuite Dalton 23 Aug 2018 17:50 BST 18-19 August 2018

This was the first time a Sprint 15 TT was hosted by the Royal Western Yacht Club in Plymouth. There were 12 competitors including 8 visitors and 4 young local helms.

We had a very warm welcome from the Royal Western team and we were all excited about the prospect of some good winds for our event. And it didn't disappoint. Roger, our race officer, gave us our briefing and guidance on the best way out of the marina – a skill in itself. Roger set us a trapezoidal course out in the Sound where the wind was around a SW Force 3-4, with quite a choppy sea.

Race 1 saw everyone off to a clean start with Jon Pearse leading us round the first mark, followed by Liam Thom, Ed Tuite Dalton and George Love. Jon's lead was short lived as Liam overtook on the off wind leg and held the lead for the rest of the first lap. On the second lap Jon managed to take back the lead on the upwind leg, but again Liam's off wind pace allowed him to power past on the reach and win the race, with Jon 2nd and Ed 3rd. The middle of the fleet was closely contested by Yvonne Pike, Derek James and Aaron Kirby.

In Race 2 Ed was first to the windward mark and held the lead until the downwind leg, when again Liam demonstrated his off wind pace and took and held the lead. George Love was closing fast on the leading 2 boats and on the second lap managed to overtake downwind to claim 2nd with Ed 3rd.

Race 3 saw Liam take the lead again, consolidating his overall lead, but there was quite a contest for the next 3 positions between Jon, Ed and Jamie Ward from Royal Western, with Ed managing to overtake both the others on the final leg to take 2nd, Jon 3rd and Jamie 4th. We subsequently learnt that it was Jamie's first time out in a Sprint 15, so he will be one to watch out for in future! Also Tom Gurney, the youngest in the fleet at just 14, was starting to work his way up the fleet putting pressure on some of the more experienced sailors and finished 6th in this race.

For Race 4 the Race Officer shortened the course and the starting line, catching a few of the less observant helms out at the pin end of the line. Liam sailed another faultless race to take 1st, followed by Ed and George. Everyone had a great a day's racing with no capsizes and we headed back to the Royal Western to recover and have a meal and drink at the club.

Sunday saw an increase in wind strength to force 4-5 which was the most we have had at a TT all this year! Our Race Officer informed us that he was moving our sailing area to the east of Drake's Island as one of the Royal Navy's submarines was due out from Plymouth and we duly headed off in anticipation of some more great sailing.

In Race 5 there were a couple of over enthusiastic helms who were over the line at the start and had to re-round as everyone else powered up the beat. Jon Pearse led round the windward mark, with Liam and Ed in hot pursuit. Liam soon took the lead with his superior off wind boat speed and led the rest of the way. Some of us were wishing the submarine might have surfaced to distract Liam but it hadn't materialised by then. With the stronger wind suiting Simon Hare he came in 6th, one behind Jamie.

With Liam having now won the event, he headed for home, leaving the rest of the fleet to compete for 1st place in the final race. Jon Pearse had a flying start and took an early lead which he held for the first lap but on the second beat he over stood the windward mark, allowing Ed to take the lead, who managed to stay ahead for the rest of the race, despite the arrival of the submarine to the east of the race area to distract us all.

Congratulations to Liam for his 5 straight firsts, making him the clear winner and to the 4 young helms from Royal Western - Jamie Ward, Tom Gurney, Aaron Kirby and Daniel Drew who completed all 6 six races in some challenging conditions. They are certainly all promising young guns.

A big thank you to everyone at the Royal Western for hosting a great event in a fabulous historic location and I am sure we will be back in bigger numbers, once the word has got out.

Overall Results:

Place Sail NoBoat NameHelm R1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
12018Talent CrewLiam Thom‑11111(DNC)4
22023 Edward Tuite ‑ Dalton‑3‑322318
31988 Jon Pearse2‑53‑5229
42019Fly‑by‑WireGeorge Love‑42‑534312
51957DreadnoughtYvonne Pike5474‑11(DNC)20
61540 Jamie Ward‑1284‑95421
71744 Derek James6‑9‑1177727
81643Double TopsThomas Gurney‑11766‑12928
91211 Erling Holmberg‑86888(DNC)30
101547Cat‑as‑trophyAaron Kirby7‑119‑119631
112026 Simon Hare9‑12‑12126532
121594Floaty ThingDaniel Drew‑10‑10101010838

Related Articles

Sprint 15 Inlands at Grafham
Held during the Grafham Cat Open over the weekend The Sprint 15 Inland Championship took place at the Grafham Cat Open on 19-20 October. 25 boats took part with strong teams from Marconi (8 boats), Stone (4) Thorpe Bay (3), Grafham (3) and Carsington (2). Posted on 23 Oct
Sprint 15 Sport Nationals at Yaverland
Not the usual balmy, calm Isle of Wight conditions The weather leading up to the Nationals at Yaverland was not the usual balmy, calm conditions that we are used to on the Isle of Wight and 36 hours of strong easterlies had built the waves up into the "unpleasant" category. Posted on 24 Sep
Sprint 15 National Championships
Harwich Town hosts nearly 50 cats Forty-eight competitors and their supporters descended on a small seaside town on the East Coast for the Sprint 15 National Championships. Posted on 22 Aug
Sprint 15 Summer TT at Marconi
22 competitors for the first event in the series Twenty-two competitors took part in the first 2019 Sprint 15 Summer TT at Marconi SC on 6th and 7th April. We were also pleased to welcome back Nigel and Fiona Denchfield as guest Races Officers for the event. Posted on 11 Apr
Chris Black Sprint 15 Icicle at Grafham
Thrills and spills in the residue of Storm Gareth The Grafham Sprint 15 Icicle traveller event took place on 17 March in a force 4-6 Westerly wind which was the residue of Storm Gareth. Seven travellers joined 3 locals for an exciting day's racing in which many practised their capsize drill. Posted on 20 Mar
Sprint 15 Winter TT at Rutland
Wall-to-wall sunshine and very light winds Sunday 24th February saw the third Sprint 15 Winter 2018/19 TT take place at Rutland. The previous TT took place in freezing conditions, under the threat of heavy snow fall and with strong gusty winds. Posted on 27 Feb
Sprint 15 TT at Thorpe Bay
Where was the mysterious mark 13? Snowy road conditions meant some travellers did not risk the journey to TBYC. So four travellers joined seven TBYC sailors on a cold but breezy (snow-free) day to complete three brisk races, back to back. Posted on 5 Feb
Sprint 15 TT at Draycote Water
Seven home boats and seven visitors Fourteen competitors took to the water at our first TT of 2019 at Draycote Water. We had seven home boats and seven visitors, with three sailing Sport mode and the rest sailing Standard mode. The forecast had been predicting 12+ knots. Posted on 15 Jan
Sprint 15 Summer Series 2018
Liam Thom is the new name on the trophy this year The Sprint 15 Summer Traveller series has a new name on the trophy this year as Liam Thom of Shanklin Sailing Club sailed a very strong series to take a well-deserved win. Posted on 12 Nov 2018
Sprint 15 Inlands at Grafham
Twenty-eight boats compete as part of the Grafham Catamaran Open 28 Sprint 15s took part in the Inland Championship at the Grafham Cat Open which happily (after the storms of last year) took place on a sunny weekend in a force 2-3 light Southerly breeze. Posted on 23 Oct 2018