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Etchells Ice Bucket Regatta at Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club

by Jan Ford 18 Sep 22:28 BST 14-15 September 2019

The weekend of the 14th-15th September saw thirteen Etchells competing in the confusingly-named Ice Bucket (a trophy donated by Andrew Cooper and named after his boat "Ice") - both days saw beautiful September sunshine and light winds, making up for the rather chilly Cowes Week that preceded it.

Saturday brought a light South Easterly breeze that steadily reduced as the day went on. The first race was held near Hamble Yacht Services with the majority of the boats drag racing on starboard to find relief from the strong ebb tide. While a few gambled on a right-hander that never came, some judged the port lay line from impressive distance, and others were caught out by the tide resulting in quite a few turns at the mark.

Sadly, the race was eventually thrown out as it exceeded the time limit of 75 minutes.

The second race saw a similar strategic situation with most boats heading to the north shore, although the tide was beginning to ease. The first across the line was Audrey (Jon Warwick) followed by Plant Hunter (Malcolm Offord) and Swedish Blue (Ante Razmilovic).

The final race of the day saw decreasing wind, turning tide and a shift in the top marks after the first lap. All of this conspired to create a slow motion final downwind leg that resulted in several place changes and a few differing opinions on how to get down the track.

In the end, Swedish Blue finished first, with Ice (Andrew Cooper) in second and Audrey in third. Sunday morning brought very little in the way of wind but much in the way of sunshine as the Etchells fleet were held ashore, until the allure of distant spinnakers persuaded the fleet to head out onto the race course where they waited patiently for the breeze to fill in from the South West.

With the 1430 cut off time fast approaching, the wind finally came good and allowed the race committee to get the fleet off the line. With a strong ebb tide, the majority of the teams were very line shy, allowing the Oxford and Royal Dart youth teams to get a jump on the fleet. Both teams held a small advantage up to the top mark, but with a course of only 0.5 miles and a building breeze the fleet remained extremely compact, and the downwind leg saw the pack reshuffle.

After a short, sharp and highly contested two laps, Exabyte took the lead from the Royal Dart who claimed second, with Jolly Roger in third.

The teams headed back to shore with Audrey (Jon Warwick) claiming the overall victory following their commanding first day, followed by Ice (Andrew Cooper) in second and Exabyte (James Howells) in third.

A huge thanks to the Cowes Corinthian Yacht Club race team for running a great event and for persevering in testing conditions.

The next event is the Nationals on the 27th-29th September, followed by 3 weekends of autumn racing October 5/6, October 26/27 and November 2/3.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoBoat nameCrewR1R2R3Pts
1  GBR 1351Audrey (Corinthian)Jon Warwick / Will Bedford / Adele Young / Freya Anderson13711
2  GBR 1407IceAndrew Cooper / Mike Greville / James Crampton42511
3  GBR 1437ExabyteJames Howells / David Bedford / Mark Lees85114
4  USA 1352Jolly RogerTom Abrey / Matt Reid / Bruno van Dyke66315
5  GBR 1439Rocketman (Corinthian)Rob Goddard / Bryn Phillips / Ed Haynes / Vicky Cowan54615
6  GBR 1438Swedish BlueAnte Razmilovic / Brian Hammersley / Andrew Mills31DSQ18
7  GBR 927Royal Dart YC ‑ Youth (Corinthian)Miles Jones / Fraser Woodley / James Holmes79218
8  GBR 1353The Plant HunterMalcolm Offord / Laurence Mead / Azat Ulutas / Jesse Opoku‑Ware271120
9  GBR 782Royal Thames YC Youths (Corinthian)Ollie Grogono / Jem Lawson / Verity Hopkins / Rosie Povall108927
10  1194Oxford University YC Youths (Corinthian)Rebecca Anthony / Meli / Josh / Annika9101029
11  GBR 1020Royal Lymington YC Youths (Corinthian)Robby Boyd / Ted Blowers / Aaron Rogers / Hattie Rogers1111830
12  GBR 1460MBFGrant Simmer / Ben Ainslie / Sam HainesDNSDNS432
13  IRL 1040A Little Xcitable (Corinthian)Peter Hodgkinson / Sarah Hodgkinson / Ian Kiff12121236

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