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Aspire Merlin Rocket National Championship at Looe Sailing Club - Day 1

by Tim Fells 18 Aug 18:57 BST 17-23 August 2019

For their 2019 National Championships the Merlin Rocket's have returned to one of their most popular venues, picturesque Looe on the south Cornwall coast. Generously sponsored for the third year by Aspire Financial Services, the week promises a combination of great sea sailing with a full social programme in the ever-welcoming Looe Sailing Club.

Great organisation between the club and the class meant that 65 boats were delivered down the tiny back streets, berthed around the beach wall and harbour and scrutineered with the minimum of fuss.

As the fleet gathered on the Sunday morning, the sun was out and the sea looking decidedly rough with white water showing looking downwind. The race officer confidently reported that the wind was 18 knots gusting 24 from 250 degrees with six foot waves. A nervous fleet judiciously took to the water for a screaming run down to the start.

Under a U flag, the fleet were away first time with Christian Birrell and Sam Brearey leading the charge out left with Nick Craig and Toby Lewis. Half way up the beat there was a 10 degree right hander that brought Jon Gorringe and Pete Gray into the lead at the first mark from Christian and Sam.

Conditions were superb - breezy but manageable - with close quarter racing as the lines of pressure and associated shifts came through. Christian and Sam eased up into the lead by the second beat with Chrises Gould and Kilsby climbing fast up to second. Unfortunately, their race was to end in calamity. Having missed the spacer mark, they then blew up their mast on the final reach.

Jon and Pete gratefully accepted second behind the flying Christian and Sam, with Nick and Toby climbing to third on the final beat. Will Henderson, on the back of a dominant Salcombe Yawl win the previous week, sailed an excellent race for fourth with his son Arthur, holding off the challenge of Andy Davis and Pippa Kilsby.

Results after Day 1:

PosBoat NameSail NoFleetHelmCrewFounders Cup
1Blue My Mind3788GoldChristian BirrellSam Brearey1
2Didley Squat3791GoldJon GorringePete Gray2
3Messy Monty3776GoldNick CraigTobytastic Lewis3
4Arwen3726GoldWill HendersonArthur Henderson4
5Keyser Soze3684GoldAndy DavisPippa Kilsby5
6Khaleesi3802GoldSimon PottsAlly Potts6
7Okey Dokey3712GoldIan SharpsAlex Warren7
8Bernard3658GoldChris JenningsChris Martin8
9Metachrosis3736GoldRoger PhillipsWill Crocker9
10Fancy Liquor3764GoldTim FellsFran Gifford11
11Doris3786GoldDavid WadeBen Rayner12
12Stealth3722GoldRoger GilbertJames Stewart13
13Dory3739GoldBen McGraneRoz McGrane14
14Goon3795GoldAlex JacksonMary Henderson15
15Speed Machine3742GoldPete BallantineRob AllenL05
16The Oldie3673GoldCaroline CroftTom Lonsdale16
17The Force Awakens3781GoldDavid WinderLiv Bell17
18Pokey3801GoldMatt BiggsBeka Jones18
19Quicksilver3787SilverChris MartinSamuel Bailey19
20The Bear3766SilverAndy DalbyPete Horn20
21Wild at Heart3709SilverRob HendersonJames Ellis21
22Roberta3796GoldWilliam WarrenRachel Rhodes22
23Night Fury3775GoldDan WillettPete Nicholson23
24Mockingjay3777SilverGeorge YeomanSophie Yeoman24
25Quick Fix3691GoldMike CalvertJane Calvert25
26Panther3774GoldJon TurnerRichard Parslow26
27General Lee3690SilverTim HarridgeClaire Mills27
28Stanley3749SilverBen HollisColin Anderson28
29Robert3756SilverSophie MackleyJames Ward29
30Puff the Magic Dragon3641SilverMark WaterhouseMat Currell30
31Red Mistress3759GoldSam BarkerMegan Pascoe31
32Sylvia3711SilverSam ThompsonLeanne Thompson32
33Strung Along3784SilverMark BarwellLouise Johnson33
34Never Been to Salcombe3582SilverBen PickeringNathan King34
35Fluffy3719BronzeRob MartinJan Martin35
36Why Ask3740SilverPatrick BlakeJilly Blake36
37Outnumbered3745SilverPaul DeanRussell Hall37
38Disciple3769SilverGraham Cranford SmithRob Langley38
39Carbonator3639BronzeDan HeatonRory Hunter39
40Pointer3790SilverColin BrockbankSuzy Brough40
41Ichthys3794BronzeJulian HarmsTimothy Harms41
42NKS3732BronzeJohn CooperBecci Wigley42
43DES3723BronzeGeoff KimberHelen Kimber43
44Enchanted Evening3666SilverJohn MeadowcroftOliver Meadowcroft44
45Rockatross3804SilverAndrea BrewsterCharlotte Fildes45
46Urban Warrior3668BronzeMark SmythJulie Cronshaw46
47Brambles3800BronzeRichard BramleyLiam Weighill47
48One Love3767BronzeBen ArcherOlivia Bellini48
49Velella3772SilverPhil EmeryPhoebe Paine49
50Heaven Sent3511BronzeAndrew MillsEllie Mills50
51Factory Maid3704BronzeJemma HorwoodSel Shah51
52Dark `n` Stormy3619BronzeGuy BrowneGreg Martin52
53Light Fantastic3555BronzeEmma RobertsonCarl Weighill53
54Shiny Happy People3695BronzePete SlackConnor Langan54
55Heavy Particle3482BronzeRichard BurtonPatrick Burton55
56Armed Forces3442BronzeMatt SmithJared LewisDNC
56Wizard in Blue3449BronzeCarl WhitehillSamuel WhitehillDNC
56Snorting3561BronzeJoe ShawHannah BurtRET
56Nostra Dormouse3577BronzeJoe ToshWill LoweUFD
56Monkey Puzzle3706BronzeLawrence ToshJack ToshRET
56The Clone Wars3735GoldDave HallPaul ConstableRET
56Peer Pressure3778GoldDavid LenzVicky LenzRET
56Narnia3751BronzeHuw ReynoldsPhil ScottRET
56Something3803GoldChris GouldChris KilsbyDNF
56Baloo3807GoldTim SaxtonJodie SaxtonRET

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