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Noble Marine Supernova Travellers at Attenborough Sailing Club

by Paul Earnshaw 24 Jun 2019 09:49 BST 15 June 2019
Attenborough Supernova Open © Mike Pritchard

Saturday 15th June saw the now annual open meeting of the Supernova class arrive at Attenborough Sailing Club. Run as part of the Noble Marine Travellers Trophy.

Based in the Midlands, within picturesque Attenborough Nature Reserve, set conveniently between Derby and Nottingham. The small yet challenging Lake offers much interest to sailors with a number of islands, shallows and an abundance of wind shifts to help fine tune boat handling skills and sharpen tactics.

This year, the fleet were greeted by the recently opened new club house. Gone are the drafty portacabin changing rooms and showers. Replaced with a purpose built, modern clubhouse. With a luxurious panoramic decking and view of the lake for the families and spectators to enjoy the closely fought contest.

Eighteen boats took to the water (a record for an Attenborough Supernova open event), ten visitors joining eight home boats. Hoping that their local knowledge would stand them in good stead against the circuit regulars.

Fleet hotshots Gavin Young (Cotswold SC) & Tony Critchley (Bolton SC) returned for the second year running. Last year these two finished in that order with some close racing with local sailor Kev Last in 3rd. Another regular at the front of the Supernova fleet, Gary Butterfield (Haversham), launched for his first taste of Attenborough Sailing.

So the scene was set for a day of tough racing in the forecast Force 3 that would see some solid gusts & and various shifts to catch out the unwary with a fair few capsizes.

Race Officer Mike Pritchard set a course to make the best of the prevailing South Westerly. Which consisted of two beats, a long run, and various reaches.

Race one started with the leading contenders of Young, Critchley and Butterfield all running out of space at the port end of the line. Resulting in contact, that saw Young completing turns. This allowed local sailor Paul Kelly (who was just to windward of this group) to sail into clear air and round the windward mark free of the chasing pack. Gavin Young recovered well, from his incident at the start, to be in 3rd place by the end of lap one. Tony Critchley was in 2nd place with Gary Butterfield in 4th.

By the end of Lap 2 Young had managed to pass Critchley and gave chase for the lead. Paul Kelly had however extended his lead nicely whilst the battle for 2nd took place. But by the end of the 60-minute race, and a total of 6 laps, Young failed to make any inroads. The race finished Paul Kelly, Gavin Young, Tony Critchley, Gary Butterfield.

The fleet retired back to the shore and the clubhouse, for sandwiches and cake kindly provided by Paul & Amanda Smith.

The afternoon races were to be sailed back to back and set to be 45 minutes duration each. Mike Pritchard set a slightly different course with a tighter reach to make the best of the slightly increased breeze.

Race 2 saw another start with Young, Critchley, and Kelly all at the Pin End, this time a clean start ensued.

The first windward mark saw Gavin Young lead, pursued by Paul Kelly with Dana Church (Nottingham SC) a close third, and local sailor Kev Last in forth.

It was Gavin's turn to control the race, never relinquishing his lead. With Kelly always in second. Tony Critchley moved through to record his second third place, and Dana Church sailed an excellent race to record a very solid 4th place.

The final race saw the gustiest winds of the day. With Kelly and Young each having recorded a 1st and 2nd. The final race would be the decider for the overall win.

Race 3 saw a Gavin Young masterclass. Nailing the start at the pin end, saw him round the first windward mark in the lead. Kelly rounded second and gave hot pursuit. Dana Church, enjoying the conditions, again rounded third. With Alistair Boyd (Haversham) an excellent 4th (setting him up for his best result of the day). Tony Critchley got caught up in a busy start line incident, putting him out of contention at this stage of the race.

By the end of lap 1 Young enjoyed a healthy lead with Kelly still in pursuit. Mid way through lap 2 Kelly had cut Young's lead substantially, but a poor windward mark rounding saw a brief dry capsize, followed by a frustrated moment in irons. This enabled Young to blast away on a gusty reach to create an unassailable lead. Tony Critchley, having ended lap one in 7th place, had the 'Bolton Red Mist' surrounding his boat, and was on an absolute mission. Blasting through the fleet to gain his best result of the day finishing in 2nd place. With Kelly 3rd and Kev Last close behind, also scoring his best result of the day in 4th.

Gavin's second bullet of the day secured him the event, with Paul Kelly 2nd overall and Tony Critchley 3rd (first Veteran), Kev Last's fourth in race 3 secured him 4th overall (first Master), tied on points with visitor Gary Butterfield.

Overall a great event. With close racing throughout the fleet. And a fantastic first showcase for Attenborough SC's new club house. Thanks to all the travellers that made the journey. And to Race officer Mike Pritchard and his race team consisting of Katy Turquoise, Malc Davidson, Gareth Lewis, Paul & Amanda Smith.

Hopefully 2020 will see another record turnout at ASC for this fantastic, friendly class.

The next Supernova event is the Nationals at Paignton, which, start on the 28th of June with over 100 boats registered to enter.

Overall Results:

PosHelmSail NoClubFleetR1R2R3Pts
1stGavin Young1192Cotswold ‑2112
2ndPaul Kelly1241Attenborough 12‑33
3rdTony Critchley1246BoltonVeteran‑3325
4thKevin Last1077AttenboroughMaster5‑1549
5thGarry Butterfield1184BartleyMaster45‑79
6thDana Church1139NottinghamVeteran‑74610
7thAlistair Boyd1219Haversham 6‑8511
8thAndrew Goodman‑Smith1062Attenborough 9‑11817
9thRob Corner1156AttenboroughMaster89(DNF)17
10thNick Whiles1234AttenboroughMaster‑1561218
11thDavid Stephen1180Bartley 117‑1418
12thBob Cuerstemont1075AttenboroughVeteran10‑13919
13thTony Bleasdale1254GirtonMaster(DNC)101020
14thPaul Bates1218Haversham 13‑171124
15thNick Turnbull‑Ross708AttenboroughMaster‑14121325
16thRoger Day1185AttenboroughVeteran1214(DNC)26
17thStuart Stephen1167BartleyVeteran‑16161531
18thDavid Bibby1140ChelmarshMasterDNFDNF(DNC)35

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