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Merlin Rocket Craftinsure Silver Tiller at Wembley Sailing Club

by Duncan Salmon 19 Mar 11:28 GMT 17 March 2019
Merlin Rocket Craftinsure Silver Tiller at Wembley 2019 © Rob O'Neill

Merlin sailors enjoy Wembley hospitality and all weather conditions

Sunday, 17th of March saw the second Craftinsure Merlin Rocket Silver Tiller meeting of the season hosted by Wembley Sailing Club.

By way of a change from the seemingly constant storms and heavy rain, the day started with blue skies and a moderate westerly breeze of around 15 to 20 mph although this was to change! A total fleet of 28 boats entered with visitors from Bartley, Blithfield Fishers Green, Hampton, Itchenor, Lymington and Parkstone. All were treated on arrival to complimentary coffee and tea with bacon rolls.

The first race got off to a clean start with Chris and Livvy Bell leading around the windward mark, followed by Andy Davis and Alex Warren and then a group of boats led by Matt Biggs and Becka Jones. Andy and Alex took the lead down the first long run down the Welsh Harp and went on to finish three minutes ahead of the chasing pack, led by Chris and Livvy.

As usual the Wembley format of three races back to back meant that Jon Gill the race officer, allowed the on water distribution of water and Mars Bars, before promptly starting the second race. Again there was a clean start and Andy and Alex started towards the pin and were able to tack onto port to clear the fleet and lead round the windward mark. Matt and Beka pushed them hard but Andy and Alex took the gun. Other new faces at the front included Andy Dalby and Chris Horn who showed early promise before fading.

The third race was postponed to allow the fleet to ride out a particularly nasty squall complete with hailstones. The squall over, the third race started in sunshine and a relatively gentle breeze, only to result in the first recall of the day. The fleet was away at the second start but the wind was building with big shifts. Matt and Beka hooked onto a major port tack lift that had them around the windward mark first.

Unfortunately this led them to become so over excited they capsized during the short run across the Harp to the gybe mark. This allowed Andy and Alex and Steve and Gill Leney through to first and second. Meanwhile the weather was deteriorating with a darkening sky of biblical appearance and proportions the resulting squall flattened many in the fleet leaving a large number capsized and those that remained upright a memorable white knuckle ride downwind. At the finish Andy and Alex were first, Chris and Livvy second and Steve and Gil third.

The remaining tired but exhilarated competitors came ashore for the customary Wembley chilli con carne, which well went down very well after the enjoyable but strenuous three races back to back. Thanks to Jon and Judy Gill and RS200 and Laser fleets for running the day and we all look forward to the next round at Chichester and Itchenor.

The Silver Tiller 2019 is sponsored by Craftinsure, with Magic Marine as the class clothing partner.

Overall Results:

Century Cup: Steve and Gill Leney
Silver Fleet: Chris Martin and Samuel Bailey
Bronze Fleet (and first Wembley boat): Richard Cooke and Luke Mores

PosClassSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3Pts
1stGold3684Andy DavisAlex WarrenBlithfield‑1112
2ndGold3803Chris GouldLivvy BellMidland2‑1624
3rdGold3801Matt BiggsBeka JonesBlithfield32(RET)5
4thSilver3787Chris MartinSamuel BuilevMidland‑7538
5thGold3673Caroline CroftTom LonsdaleBlithfield53‑98
6thGold3766Andy DalbyPete HornHSC44‑78
7thGold3716Steven LeneyGillian LeneyBlithfield‑88412
8thGold3791Jon GorringeMimi GorringeParkstone66‑1012
9thSilver3749Colin AndersonSean AndersonBlithfield‑97613
10thSilver3730Paul HollisPaula MasonBlithfield‑109514
11thSilver3583Ben EavesRob KennaughRedditch‑1212820
12thGold3784Mark BarwellLouise JohnsonLymington1310(DNS)23
13thBronze3715Richard CookeLuke MooresWembley‑14111223
14thSilver3702Duncan SalmonHarriet SalmonWembley(RET)141125
15thSilver3686Jeremy DeaconMichael JanowiczRYA‑19171330
16thSilver3745Paul DeanSarah RobertsWembley1713(DNC)30
17thBroze3682Jon StewardNicr YFishers Green16‑201430
18thBronze3732John CooperBecci WigleyLymington‑18151631
19thBronze3545Rob HatleyJoe HatleyTemesis‑23191534
20thBronze3668Mark SmythJulie CronshawWembley‑20181735
21stGold3709Rob HendersonAlice MarkhamLymington11(RET)DNC40
22ndBronze3561Joe ShawSuzyWembley2121(RET)42
23rdSilver3790Colin BrocknankVana VaslakiWembley15(RET)DNS44
24thBronze3634Richard CoulterLouis LapaggeFisher Green22(RET)DNS51
25thWood370Marc HeretierJohn MiddletonWembley24(RET)RET53
26thBronze3717John GreenAlison MurphyWembley(RET)DNSDNS58
26thBronze3651Kieran O'FarrellHannah BurtWembley(RET)DNSDNS58
26thBronze3637Alan BroadbentRussellWembley(RET)DNSDNS58

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