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RS300s during the RS End of Season Regatta at Rutland Sailing Club

by Harry McVicar 8 Nov 06:30 GMT 3-4 November 2018

Last weekend eight RS300s faced up to highly varied conditions at this year's RS End of Season regatta at Rutland Water.


Saturday greeted us with wind gusting the exciting side of 20knts and a 1h 43min pursuit race (2h for the RS Aero 5s). The course was a relatively simple triangle with a kink in the run (more on that soon) and a 1.7km beat.

The race started with Paul Watson leading to the first mark followed by Mark Cooper, James Phare, and Matt Pedlow. The run didnt take long to claim victims though, with Rob Ford, Matt and James getting collected by some wild offshore gusts, allowing Harry McVicar to catch up to 3rd.

At this point, the first prize needs to be awarded: A group Wooden Spoon for Paul, Mark, and Harry for having no idea where the second mark was (that kink in the run) and spending 2 or 3 minutes half way down the leg reaching, beating and generally confusing everybody trying to find it, before sodding it and going to the gybe mark. Luckily we had passed the 2nd mark en route, so no harm no foul, other than looking a bit silly.

After all that, Paul held his lead, Harry had got up to 2nd, and Matt was back upright and into 3rd.

Up the long beat, Paul suffered from a case of "Halyard giving up" giving symptoms of "sail a foot from the top of the mast" and "not going as fast as he should", allowing Harry and Matt to catch up. Matt had a good run into the top mark and rolled Harry to take 2nd, before Harry retaking 2nd down the run. Cue typical light vs heavy, fast downwind vs fast upwind battle. Also cue Paul cutting his losses and pulling over onto the beach to pull his sail back up, putting Harry into 1st and Matt into 2nd.

This formation held for another lap, with Paul fixing his boat quickly enough to get into 3rd, just ahead of Mark in 4th.

On the final lap, Harry forgot to be quick downwind (matched by an RS Aero 5...) which left him as easy prey for Matt up the final beat, giving a final finishing order to a chaotic race of Matt, Harry, Paul, Mark, James and Cheryl, with Rob and John Turner retiring.

The evening's food and beer refuel took place in the club house, which was much improved with some new catering. Not quite the Wheatsheaf but the other 200 odd sailors booked it out all night. Sweaty...

Go left!

Sunday brought the polar opposite to Saturday, with fog across the lake, wind in single figures and 3 short races planned.

Race one saw Harry and Mark up front, closely followed by James and Matt, whose positions held with the main challenge being the swarms of RS Aeros we were lapping and the RS600s we had caught up.

Race two brought with it a bit more wind, requiring mild use of the toestraps for the whole fleet to the first mark, the sprint being won by James, closely followed by Harry and Mark. Harry passed James on the bottom reach, but James and Mark went hard left up the next beat and James reclaimed the lead. On the final beat Harry copied James and Mark from the previous lap, banging left and making a massive gain to claim the race, followed by Mark then James.

In race three Harry had seen the value of going left, did that off the line and did a horizon job. The next three positions were a close contest between James, Mark, and Matt. It was settled on the final beat as Mark and James clocked onto Harry's plan, went left and passed Matt.

That left Harry with three 1sts, Mark with three 2nds, and Matt with a 3rd and a 4th to count. Due to double points for the pursuit race this gave a podium of Harry, Matt, and Mark.

In the official prizes, Paul was the big winner getting some real silverware for winning the RS300 Rooster National Tour. Harry picked up RS300 End of Seasons champion and, as a result, 2nd in the national tour. Mark finally got his limited edition Rooster National Tour neck gaiter, as well as 5th in the national tour, and James claimed his neck gaiter, which is apparently a garment not a reptile.

Thanks to Rutland Sailing Club, the RS Class Association and Rooster Sailing for a great event and national tour.

Have a good off season everyone, and see you all in 2019!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubPursuitR1R2R3Pts
1st523McVicar HarryDraycote Water SC4‑1116
2nd451Pedlow MatthewStewartby Water SC23‑649
3rd525Cooper MarkBurghfield SC8‑22212
4th528Watson PaulBowmoor SC655(DNC)16
5th331Phare JamesQUSC12‑43318
6th339Wood CherylPennine SC10‑87724
7th351Ford RobAWSCDNC‑64527
8th480Turner JohnWhitefriars SCDNC7‑8631

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