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Topper GJW Direct Inland Championship at Grafham Water Sailing Club

by Chris Woodard 10 May 19:55 BST 27-28 April 2019
Topper GJW Direct Inlands at Grafham Water © Pheobe Crossley

The Topper GJW Direct NS4 Inland Championships attracted over 200 boats to Grafham Water SC over the weekend of 27-28 April.

In the days leading up to the event the weather forecast was not looking promising, with very strong winds predicted for both days, but that did not deter the hoards of enthusiastic young sailors who arrived at the club for registration bright and early on Saturday morning. Sure enough, the wind was howling and it was an easy decision for PRO Peter Saxton to announce at the 10.15 briefing that there wouldn't be any racing today! This was entirely the right call, as the average wind speed held between 20 and 30 knots throughout the day, gusting well over 40 knots at times. On such a cold and miserable day the options for other impromptu activities were fairly limited, but many of the competitors were happy to spend the day hanging around the club with their friends, while others got on with some boat bimbling (the queue of boats lined up at Russ's Topper van was impressive!) and Huntingdon cinema may have noticed a spike in their takings that afternoon!

Sunday dawned still windy, but absolutely sailable, and with a revised target of 4 races the fleet launched into around 16-18 knots, gusting 22-24 knots, which held through most of the day, only easing off a little for race 3 before peaking during race 4.

The 178-boat 5.3 fleet was, as usual, raced in flights, with competitors allocated red, blue, yellow or white mast-head ribbons, seeded by the sailor's current national rankings to achieve an even spread in each of the flights. This usually works pretty well, as would be expected, with a roughly equal representation of each colour in the top 20 at the end of each event, but this time there were murmurings from the very beginning that red flight was looking very tough with a rather large number of the top sailors (and so it proved to be in the final results!)

With the revised programme of four races meaning that there were now eight 89-boat starts to get away, the black flag was in evidence from the outset, and initially at least the fleets co-operated and line discipline was good. After two races it was looking like the Championship was already a two-horse race, with James Deaton and Ollie Wilcox winning both races in their respective flights, and no one else showing the necessary consistency to be likely to catch them, but that was all about to change! For the start of race 3 the white and yellow flight racked up way too far forward too early, and from the one-minute gun onwards the list of numbers on the committee boat blackboard just kept growing, with 14 boats identified course-side during the final minute. Significantly this included James, and when cramp set in during the long cold wait afloat this put an end to his challenge. Ollie however sailed another great race, finishing third to put himself in an (almost!) unassailable position with a race to spare, whilst the victories in races 3 and 4 were shared between Kate Robertson, Ben Purrier, Leah Fidling and Freddie Howarth.

Overall victory, and the title of 2019 Inland Champion, therefore went to Ollie Wilcox, with Sam Shackle showing great consistency (discarding a fifth) to secure the runner-up spot, and Kate Robertson completing the podium and taking the honour of first female. The boy's podium was completed by Ben Purrier (fourth), with Leah Fidling and Daisy Desorgher joining Kate on the girl's podium. The Endeavour prize (always a great one to win as the prize is an Optimum Time "Big Yellow" sailing watch) is awarded for the highest score from a competitor who has completed every race, and this went to Andrew Scott.

In the 25-boat 4.2 fleet the generally younger, smaller, and less experienced sailors coped extremely well with the strong winds, and the fleet completed a 5-race schedule under the expert guidance of PRO Adam Millington. Sam Graydon was on excellent form, securing overall victory with wins in three of the five races, with the other race wins going to Alissa Marshall and Bjorn Handley, but great consistency from Immi Rees (three 2nds and two 3rds) secured the runner-up spot, with Graydon McLeod Fleming taking third place overall, and Jessica Hedgecock bagging the Endeavour.

As is customary at this event there was also a Regatta fleet for the youngest and least experienced sailors, many with older siblings in the main racing fleets, and although the weather conditions were far from ideal for these sailors they nonetheless took to the water, with multiple reefs or sailing two-up where appropriate, and coped admirably despite the strong winds.

As always Grafham proved to be an excellent venue for such a large event, with slick race management on both courses, and despite the challenging weather conditions everything came together to create another great event, for which thanks must go to the vast gang of parent volunteers both afloat and ashore, and to our loyal sponsors GJW Direct, Rooster and Harken.

Next stop is NS5 at Carsington SC on 8-9 June, which will also be the first qualifier for next winter's National Squads (just seven days after we complete the final squad camp for last year's incumbents!) can we possibly exceed 200 entries for this one too?!

Overall Results:

5.3 Rig

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4Pts
1st48066Oliver WilcoxFOSSC/Paignton SC113‑125
2nd47016samuel ShackleBroxbourne SC‑53429
3rd48050Kate RobertsonSwarkestone SC631‑1910
4th48105Ben PurrierParkstone YC‑751511
5th48249Leo WilkinsonMaidenhead SC52‑26411
6th47740Sean WoodardWaldringfield SC & Deben YC‑983213
7th46387Tom MitchellRoyal Tay YC36‑19615
8th48260Oliver MeadowcroftUpper Thames474‑815
9th48261Leah FidlingChester Sailing and CC/Leigh & Lowton SC3‑1712116
10th46770William ThomasNotts County SC‑1076316
11th47790Ben PalingNotts County SC‑1245716
12th46364Edward BakerFOSSC/Paignton/Chew Valley105‑29318
13th47028Toby BloomfieldPaignton SC2117‑2520
14th47654James SmaggasgaleHOAC / Queensmead210(BFD)1022
15th47833Tom PeacockParkstone YC12‑2021125
16th47386Timothy EvansGrafham SC‑11981027
17th48224Daisy DesorgherRutland SC‑291112629
18th47537Austin WrightPennine SC412‑151430
19th48513Freddie HowarthPoole YC1317(BFD)131
20th48246Lawrence DonnellySurrey Docks‑316101733
21st47101Iris SingletonHollowell SC15417‑3636
22nd48581Honor ProcterCardiff Bay YC‑1713101336
23rd47350Alex HolbornParkstone YC/Paignton SC7219‑2537
24th48509Cameron SwordPapercourt SC/Queen Mary SC‑181821838
25th47954Ollie FreemantlePoole YC2012‑21941
26th47902henry koesouth bank SC1523‑28442
27th47173Gregory CornesThe Chase SC‑252202143
28th48348Xavier DunnHillhead SC /Jets1721‑28543
29th48582Jamie BriggsLargs SC2987‑3144
30th48232James CrossleyDatchet Water SC/Dovey YC16‑2982347
31st48350Dru TownsendPortishead Yacht and SC22917‑3648
32nd47099Harry NewtonHampton Pier YC26‑2791449
33rd48102James CurtisBosham SC191416‑3049
34th47773Oliver Vennis‑OzanneHill Head SC(DNF)2861650
35th46521Jasmin RobertsonNairn SC(DNF)1332752
36th43950Ben AdlerCCSC2416‑341252
37th48309Charlotte KnightNBYC/Horning 632(BFD)1654
38th46625Eva MillerSnettisham Beach SC2322‑39954
39th47664Edward Schuster BruceParkstone YC83020‑3858
40th48216Charlie HopkinsonNotts County SC‑2524142058
41st48092Louise DavisWarsash SC28‑3752659
42nd48093Tom CampbellParkstone YC92031‑3260
43rd47765Oliver KeenanTamworth SC‑3010272461
44th48264Eilidh McQueenHelensburgh SC/RNCYC1418‑332961
45th48307Catherine AlboneCYC/Milton Keynes SC2224‑401561
46th48583Thomas WillettLlangorse SC1933‑371163
47th44806Harris GoodmanHill Head SC / Jets18‑56291966
48th47684Molly Hinsliff‑SmithNotts County SC‑3216252768
49th47835Noah FitzgeraldAlton Water SC/ WSC‑3325232068
50th45991Keiran BrayBanbury SC21‑26222669
51st47825Morven WoodClyde Cruising Club361519‑4570
52nd46127Ceri RobertsTresaith Mariners SC242818‑3970
53rd47077Joseph WarwickerBough Beech SC1619(BFD)TAL73
54th47393William BurbedgeChester Sailing and Canoeing Club11‑48481776
55th48365Iwan RobertsTresaith Mariners SC3514(BFD)2776
56th47806Luka FranklinBough Beech SC1335(BFD)TAL77
57th48098Charlie GuyettCransley SC321530‑4277
58th48252Thomas LinkLeigh and Lowton SC27‑33222877
59th47647Charlie MerryweatherGoring Thames SC3438‑50880
60th45700Andy PengWarsash SC‑3719313080
61st46888Scarlet DesorgherRutland SC83935(DNC)82
62nd48409Matthew LloydSnettisham Beach SC34‑36133582
63rd47860Charlie GranChichester YC23‑41184182
64th47748Ciara WoodardWaldringfield SC & Deben YC26‑39213582
65th47792Oliver HalePoole YC(DNF)22115083
66th48325Rhys PowellLlandegfedd SC142643‑5383
67th48364Llion MorrisLlandudno SC/Rydal Penrhos School4427(BFD)1586
68th48085Ellise FitzgeraldLargs SC2825‑403386
69th43581Arthur BakerFishers Green SC42‑44133287
70th48577Thomas BatesRipon SC‑6131154389
71st46148Archie BurtonBeaver204524‑5589
72nd47926Peter WalkerParkstone YC33‑48382192
73rd47426James DeatonRHYC11BFD(DNC)93
74th45562Malcolm McLeod FlemingHunts SC414114‑5796
75th47124Anne FredborgPapercourt SC‑7334471899
76th48476James ClarkeGrafham Water SC3642(BFD)22100
77th47536Chloe MillsPennine SC3523(BFD)42100
78th47569Cadan PearceTresaith Mariners SC4138(BFD)23102
79th47388Aimee BrayBanbury SC39‑453628103
80th46919Antonio PascaliIBRSC43‑502734104
81st47220Mark RIPLEYPaignton SC425116‑59109
82nd48140Amelia EatonSnettisham Beach SC374330‑46110
83rd45451Joseph EvansPriory SC27(DNC)3555117
84th48345Felix CorsonLlandudno SC/Rydal Penrhos School3930‑5148117
85th47219Owen JonesLlandegfedd SC / CBYC58‑672338119
86th47927CHARLES ALSTONNBYC‑53343847119
87th30119Daniel FletcherIsland Barn SC443244‑52120
88th46768Anya MorrisMYC4529‑4947121
89th47023Heather QuinnNotts County SC55‑602641122
90th48069Matthew StubbinsLlandudno SC38‑585529122
91st48101Felix McMullanHollowell SC404042‑56122
92nd47794Imogen DAYHollowell SC21‑625548124
93rd48257Jessica PerkinsHill Head SC/Southern Zone Squad/Jets‑66365831125
94th47462George Colquittwest kirby SC434241‑49126
95th47796Ben KnightsHunts SC464932‑58127
96th48079George WelshChester Sailing and Canoeing Club3831‑5959128
97th47685Arlo BraundOxford SC3143‑5754128
98th48526Tom ThwaitesRoyal Norfolk and Suffolk YC505425‑67129
99th46979William ThorogoodOrwell YC‑61544233129
100th46733Daisy RobinsonFishers Green SC4050‑6040130
101st47879Oscar FryWarsash SC (JETS)505724‑60131
102nd48452Annabelle Pierce‑JonesPDSC‑74445337134
103rd48451Daisy FisherHollingworth Lake543746‑62137
104th46610jessica taylorBlackwater SC55‑744540140
105th47733Dan MeadowcroftUpper Thames SC‑74641167142
106th45440Lucia AikmanChester Sailing and Canoeing Club51‑635239142
107th48185Islay GoodmanHill Head SC / Jets5158‑6034143
108th48587Jack HardyWimbledon Park474749(TAL)143
109th42433Erin YoungScaling Dam SC564939‑69144
110th46881jorja marshallrhyc/rhs4647‑6252145
111th48317Ffion WoodCHIPAC305759‑75146
112th47640Grace KillenParkstone YC525936‑70147
113th48159Jolyon SmoultLlangorse SC63‑664143147
114th48175Madeleine ChildsDatchet Water SC/London4953‑6345147
115th48244Toby Clingan ‑66564350149
116th48327Arlo TurnerGlossop SC‑65633754154
117th47437Amber HalePoole YC54‑624456154
118th45586Ryan WalfordHickling broad SC/SFSC/Snowflakes SC(DNF)40BFD24155
119th48349Sam ByrdDraycote Water SC455258‑61155
120th4735Daniel HolbornParkstone YC/Paignton SC566833‑74157
121st47126Lia HorneBarnt Green SC‑68356161157
122nd46459Isabelle SmithBrixham YC/Paignton SC5955‑7144158
123rd46352Owen PopeGrafham Water SC48(DNC)4664158
124th46274Harriet SackerBurnham Overy Staithe SC4852‑7658158
125th47836River GreenPoole YC53‑706244159
126th46974Thomas MachellChichester YC57‑665349159
127th44200Thomas OldriniPennine SC‑64615051162
128th42206Emily SmithPoole YC634654‑68163
129th45828Megan GreavesElton SC714647‑74164
130th48586Finlay MorganSouth Staffs SC‑72656337165
131st47801Alexander MaclayGrafham Water SC‑67554566166
132nd48120Isabella FerneyhoughMarconi SC476161‑71169
133rd47653Miles RipleyPaignton SC586051(DNC)169
134th47665Joseph MolePapercourt SC7951(BFD)46176
135th47777Finley HartshornBowmoor SC/FOSSC6071‑7351182
136th21337reuben HudsonNewhaven and seaford SC64‑705665185
137th47302Jemima GottoNBYC627252(DNC)186
138th46391TED BALLDraycote Water SC(DNF)BFD3463187
139th40212Anna MillerAnnandale SC‑81764863187
140th47657Emily RussellWorcestershire Youth Sailing Association4973(DNC)65187
141st46396Edward NeylanChew Valley Lake SC68‑725764189
142nd47601Tom MossRipon SC6275(BFD)53190
143rd47310Edward SittonWarsash SC / JETS‑75695668193
144th48083Arran GoodmanHill Head SC / Jets57‑776573195
145th47266Ffin BarkerNeyland YC71‑755472197
146th45802Emma RammOxford SC‑72697257198
147th47140Felix CummingsOxford SC60‑786871199
148th46970Alicia BiggsLlandegfedd SC676470(DNC)201
149th42004Lily SpeedItchenor SC / Chichester YC597469‑75202
150th46520Kaitlyn WyattPapercourt SC‑76656473202
151st46467Thomas TempleSouth Staffs SC8059(DNC)66205
152nd47002Joseph GreenRutland SC70‑817760207
153rd44351Lotte PostGrafham Water SC‑80676677210
154th47615Harry AsplinSaltash SC5268DNC(DNC)211
155th47719Megan ThomsonIsland Barn Reservoir SC/ RLYC75‑796770212
156th48437Taylor BerryChase SC7053DNC(DNC)214
157th48138Wanda PayneLlandegfedd SC73‑776477214
158th47264SACHIN GHOLKARErrwood SC6973‑8078220
159th48332Anna FosterGoring Thames SC6980(DNC)72221
160th47077Sam WaltonMaidenhead SC‑79787569222
161st45398Maddie SmithPoole YC78‑846580223
162nd47855Lauren IronsPapercourt SC6571DNC(DNC)227
163rd46076Oliver WattamFelpham SC777674(TAL)227
164th28197Archie McEwan 83(DNC)6783233
165th30619Tilly PhelpsParkstone YC7879(BFD)76233
166th45837Charley WhiteNBYC(DNF)DNC6679235
167th15725Joanna LeakeIsland Barn Reservoir SC81‑827879238
168th44523Harry WhiteNBYC7783(DNC)80240
169th47306Andrew ScottDale YC‑82807982241
170th47771Thomas BiggerGrafham Water SC76‑81DNE78245
171st Joshua DonleyGWSC(BFD)82DNE81254
172nd46350Rebecca SmithBrixham YC/Paignton SC8383DNC(DNC)257
173rd11734Lukas Tyrrell 82DNFDNC(DNC)263
174th48574Bethany DogaLlandudno SC(DNF)84DNCDNC267
175th47488Malachy BrownOxford SC(DNC)DNCDNCDNC273
175th43333Benjamin ShackletonPapercourt SC(DNF)DNCDNCDNC273
177th25056Adele BurbidgeGrafham Water SC(DNF)DNCDNCDNC273
177th Dominic AthertonGrafham Water SC(DNF)DNCDNCDNC273

4.2 Rig

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1st48535Sam GraytonNotts County SC311(DNF)16
2nd48617Immi ReesWarsash SC (JETS)222‑339
3rd46223Graydon McLeod FlemingHunts SC5‑842213
4th45770Bjorn HandleyQueen Mary SC4‑551515
5th48318merryn attridgeSwarkestone SC‑7734418
6th47768Charlotte CooperWest Lancashire YC63‑86722
7th48361Noah WoodCHIPAC‑131175831
8th46688Raife PiggottNotts County SC86‑1371031
9th48508Alex PurrierParkstone YC9‑10108936
10th45438Hayden MooreNotts County SC‑1496111137
11th19145alissa marshallRhs149(DNF)DNC40
12th46168Gwyneth LanyonNotts County SC121211‑13641
13th47120Finley BriggsLargs SC10141210‑1546
14th46205Caitlin ThomasNotts County SC‑15151591352
15th32455Amelia GreenRutland SC11131614(DNF)54
16th48572Jemima FryWarsash SC (& JETS)(RET)2314121261
17th46303Harriet WoodJumbles1816‑20161464
18th27192Edward QuinnNotts County SC1717‑18171667
19th42613Edward PalingNotts County SC‑201917151768
20th44954George BiggsLlandegfedd SC19‑201918TAL78
21st46512Jessica HedgecockHollowell SC‑212121191879
22nd47625Ellie ThwaitesRoyal Norfolk and Suffolk YC / NBYC1618(DNF)DNCDNC86
23rd45197Polly McMullanHollowell SC222222(DNF)DNC92
24th46611Jack WrightLlangorse SC(DNS)24DNFDNCDNC102
25th47158Charlotte Plant (RET)DNCDNCDNCDNC104

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