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Humans dominate the Hamble Foxer Dinghy Intergalactics

by Martin Banbury 10 Sep 2018 13:32 BST 8-9 September 2018
Yoda, back of fleet, is, at the Hamble Foxer Dinghy Intergalactics © Craig Kirkpatrick-Whitby

Hamble River Sailing Club near Southampton hosted the Foxer Intergalactics this weekend (8th and 9th September). Sixteen boats competed in one of planet earth's hottest dinghy racing events. Multiple world class champions from other classes battled it out against the odd alien.

The event was dominated by earthling Ian Southworth (ex J24 World Champion) in Giggles, with David Bartholomew (Fast 40+ helm) and James Ross in 2nd and 3rd. Jedi master Yoda was barred from using The Force. Despite Sunday being gusty nearly everyone managed to stay in their boat and a great barbecue was laid on in the clubhouse. Hamble River Sailing Club is one of the most vibrant, active clubs in Britain and the Foxer is their biggest dinghy fleet.

Darren Baker came his usual 4th, and came second in the first race. In the second race Tony Kilby got the start and maintained his performance to come second. Chris Rashley, ex Moth European Champion gave the safety boat a fright on Sunday with a broach in a 25 knot gust which made the rescue boat wonder how he stays in a Moth. He won race 3 despite being a newcomer to the class. Another sailor to broach on Sunday without capsizing was Austyn Follet representing. Nick O'Donnell took on a lot of water at the gate in one race but stayed upright.

David Bartholomew sailed consistently in day one but was on fire on the second day with two firsts.

The other interstellar event in Bosham (Hayling) included the Oppies and some of the sailors sailed only one day to oversee their mini aliens. This included Shaun Barber who finished third on day one.

New comer John Langdon sailing with an old sail in the first few races and going in for a new sail managed to win the Snakebite prize (i.e. obligatory capsize drink) on Sunday.

The Over 60's competition was contested between Yoda (Martin Banbury), Roger Gunn and Foxer designer Hedley Bewes, the latter also kindly loaned the beautiful Barouche as the committee boat. Roger was kind enough to help on the committee boat on Sunday. Mainly through staying power and certainly not through skill, Yoda won the Bedpan Trophy which at 900 years old was an achievement.

Despite a double pointer on the last race there were a lots of rooky mistakes: dagger boards up; poor mark rounding and thus a number of sailors ended up further down the fleet than they would normally be.

A great time was had by all.

About the Foxer class

"Some 20 years ago, the Hamble Foxer popped onto the scene, winning instant approval from many of the UK's finest sailors. The brainchild of Hedley Bewes and designer David Thomas, this one-design 11-footer with single sail rig is the epitome of simplicity - precisely what makes it so appealing! Its responsive handling make it perfect for darting in and out of the moored yachts on the Hamble, and with a year-round race programme for the 50-strong fleet, this is the go-to class for an impressive roll-call of national and international yachting champions seeking the purist side of dinghy racing." Georgie Corlett for Boat.com

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