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Hyde Sails 2017 Dinghy Show

Fireball Inland Championship at Draycote Water Sailing Club

by Colin Snowdon & Ian Dobson 17 Oct 2018 07:29 BST 13-14 October 2018

Sponsored by Hyde Sails, Pinnell & Bax

28 boats made the trip to the Midlands for the last event in the Fireball 2018 Calendar. The forecast may well have put off a few travellers with predicted winds of 22-26 knots with gusts of 48. It was great to see 9 local boats on the start line, some of them new to UKFA sailing.

All seemed quite calm standing on the lee shore outside the club house for the briefing; however on the water it was a different story. Race Officer John Rhodes had the task of managing the event and the fleet was relieved to be given the opportunity to launch and race. Conditions were challenging with the southerly wind direction, huge gusts and lulls keeping the crews well rinsed. Talk of a three month wait for a new mast made some apprehensive while others were glad they hadn't used their best sails.

Twenty of the original twenty eight boats made the start line, discretion being the better part of valour for some. The racing was epic, with many place changes, spills, thrills and screams. An small early lead from Penny and Russ Clark was short lived with a dramatic capsize on the 1st reach. By the leeward mark it was Dobson /Wagstaff who took charge, and then pushed on to take the bullet. Behind there were many casualties but Cullen/Edwards stayed upright to take second.

There were four retirements from the first race but as the wind built during the second race only seven competitors managed to cross the finish line. Another win for Dobson/Wagstaff (despite notable capsizes) with Marsh/Davenport adopting the tortoise [white sails only] approach and earning second. Noticeable speed and ability being displayed by Peter and Tom Kyne gave the pair two consistent results. Suffice to say that was enough racing for both the competitors and the Race Officer.

The fleet retreated to the bar to recall tales of what shall go on record as 'One of the best ever days out in a Fireball', 'Brutal' and 'Epic'. Veteran fireballer Pete Badam and Richard Botting clocked an impressive 33 kph on a GPS tracker. Iain Christie commented "the gusts were so vicious in race 2 that you could see them coming down the course, main and jib both eased in readiness, boat feathered into wind and they were still flicking you over the instant they hit."

Ashore the club had fish n chips followed by a quiz. Hyde Sails very generously donated a jib which was raffled between all the entrants present.

Sunday morning brought more settled conditions, 10-12 knot wind and lots of rain. The start line was slightly port biased but a late wind shift saw many over the pin end. There followed a general recall and the appearance of the black flag. Dobson took charge of the First race although a tight race in the top five places, eventually saw Cullen/Edwards lead from Hope/Stewart, Willcox Twins and Wade/York. Another bunch start from the pin end saw yet again Dobson/Wagstaff lead round the first only to be pulled out with a BFD along with most of the other top 5. Kevin Hope and Andy Stewart seized the opportunity by winning the race, and then followed up with a second win on the bounce. The breeze built and the rain stopped for the final race ending an exciting and challenging weekend of racing. Dobson/Wagstaff claimed the 2018 Inland Championship Title ahead of the ever consistent Hope/Stewart.

Hats off to John Rhodes for running four races in quick succession giving the full 6 races for the weekend. Back in the Club House the Fleet enjoyed a large supply of Draycote cakes before prize giving.

Numerous Prizes donated by Hyde Sails and Pinnell & Bax. A big thank you to all who helped on and off the water from our winning helm Ian Dobson.

With some notable new fleet members, we can now look forward to a short break before the exciting UKFA racing returns in 2019.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubFleetR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st15141Ian DobsonRichard Wagstaff Gold111(BFD)216
2nd15133Kevin HopeAndy StewartNotts County SCGold‑53311513
3rd14928Anthony WillcocksJames WilcocksPYSCSilver‑135448728
4th15124Peter KyneTom KyneBrightlingsea SCGold3415(BFD)5431
5th15070Issac MarshOliver DavenportNorthamptonGold92‑13210932
6th15073Sam MettamTim SaundersPapercourt SCGold6(DNF)1236633
7th15147Paul CullenGeoff EdwardsWeirwoodGold2(DNF)2BFD4239
8th15143David WadeAntony YorkNorthamptonGold4(DNF)5BFD3344
9th13944Dan JohnsonBen LathamErrwood SCSilver‑1561497844
10th15120Vince HoreySam PlattKing George SCGold7(DNC)11512DNC64
11th14950Chris ThorneJohn PlattLyme RegisSilver8(DNC)17BFD141078
12th14994Pete BadhamRichard BottingDraycote WaterSilver14(DNC)101115DNC79
13th15150Angus HemmingsSteve ChesneyStokes BaySilver11(DNF)68DNCDNC83
14th14778Mike DeanePaul DisneyDraycote WaterSilver(DNC)DNC7613DNC84
15th15114John HayesJoel JamesSouthportSilver(DNC)DNC8711DNC84
16th14837Russ CormackAli CormackBudworthSilver(DNC)DNF9109DNC86
17th14388James CoxonJames Arwott  (DNC)DNC2214191195
18th14843Paul AnthonyMark StringerDraycote WaterBronze(DNF)DNC2115181295
19th14474Iain ChristieTom VianDraycote WaterSilver107(DNC)DNCDNCDNC104
20th14622Jane CollisonPatrick CollisonDraycote WaterBronze16(DNC)25DNC2014104
21st15056Colin SnowdonKaren HilesDraycote WaterSilver(DNC)DNC181217DNC105
22nd14887Thomas PayneAlice PowellHayling Island SCBronze(DNF)DNC201716DNF111
23rd14064Bob MorrisEllen CampbellDraycote WaterBronze(DNC)DNC2316DNF15112
24th1455Ian MooreDom CotterillDraycote WaterBronze(DNC)DNC2418DNC13113
25th14940Martin Sowerby? Silver(DNC)DNF1913DNCDNC119
26th15042Peter WoodPaul RoeDraycote WaterSilver12(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNC128
27th14886Simon MaskellTom MaskellHunts SCSilver(DNF)DNC16DNCDNCDNC132
28th15096Penny ClarkeRuss Clarke Gold(DNF)DNFDNCDNCDNCDNC145

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