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Phantom Eastern Series Open at Southwold Sailing Club

by Bill Taylor 6 Aug 2019 21:47 BST 3-4 August 2019
Phantom Eastern Series at Southwold SC © Lee Kelly

The much anticipated Southwold open started on Saturday 3rd August but most of the fleet turned up Friday afternoon to take full advantage of the cracking setting and pitch their tents and motor homes up just down river of the club on the river Blyth. Once everyone was set up they retired to the clubhouse for refreshments and a Chinese meal.

In the morning a forecast of a light north easterly breeze got the fleet wondering whether to have a full or half breakfast from the cafe. After the briefing the courses were set on the Walberswick side of the coast and after a tricky exit to get to the start line race one got under way. New to the fleet Will Cleverley made a good start and was first round the windward mark, but was not able to keep the speed on all points of sailing and the fleet soon got back to him. Clearly one to watch in the future though!

Ian "Windy" Miller was very fast considering that he hasn't sailed since the nationals, and he took the win from Matt House with Graham Dale Jones third.

With three races scheduled the starts came thick and fast; race two saw Bob Portway putting the hammer down after being beaten to the windward mark again by Will who displayed great upwind speed. Matt "Jock" House took second and Windy third.

Race three saw Graham Dale Jones at the windward mark first due to a shifting wind but he was unable to keep the lead to the end with Matt taking his first bullet meaning that there had been three different race winners on the day. With Bob in second and the impressive Windy in third it meant that there was all to play for on day two.

After a night of sampling the local ales and dining on fish and chips, the fleet woke up to another light forecast - south easterly this time - so another tricky sail beating out of the Blyth to get to the triangle sausage course.

Race four started with quite a short line which made timing your start very important. Bob managed this very well making it to the windward mark in first place and staying there ahead of matt in second and Bill "Slayer" Taylor in third.

Matt House was still fighting and clearly not letting Bob have it all his own way. He won race five with one dayer Nick Favell taking second and Bob third it meant that it all came down to the last race.

Race six started with a congested line and a shifting wind no chance of a port tack flyer. Bob Portway just piped Matt House and Windy meaning that Bob had won the event on count back.

Well done to Southwold sailing club for putting on a great event. The next stop on the Eastern circuit is the East Coast championships at Burnham on Crouch over the Bank holiday weekend.

Overall Results:

1st Bob Portway (RHYC)
2nd Matt House (RHYC)
3rd Ian Miller (Alton Water)
4th Eric Howe (Creeksea Sailing Club)
5th Bill Taylor (Creeksea Sailing Club)

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