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Blaze Inland Championship at Chase Sailing Club

by Ben Harden 8 Oct 2019 19:49 BST 5-6 October 2019

A healthy 53 strong Blaze fleet made its way to the Midlands for a challenging weekend of lake sailing on Chase water sponsored by Allen, Hartley Boats, and Marine 13.

Those lucky few who could get out of work early on Friday made their way to Chase Water Sailing Club and were welcomed to a stunning millpond as the sunset. After masts had been raised and boats fiddled with the bar swiftly opened and takeaways started to arrive, giving all a good chance to catch up on what a great year of Blaze sailing it had been.

The start on Saturday was scheduled for 1100, plenty of time for early morning arrivals to rig and then enjoy England whoop the Argentinians in Japan.

As the fleet headed out to the start area, in a light and shifty 7-10Knts, it soon became apparent that the day was going to be a very interesting game of snakes and ladders.

The first start of a weekend's racing is always an interesting one. The fleet pushed hard with the top guns eager to lay down the gauntlet. However, with over 50 boats on the line in was inevitable that the first start was a general recall. The race committee then decided to hoist the U flag for the rest of the weekend.

The Race Committee had also made the choice to run courses around set club racing marks, which as it turned out, made for some different and more exciting courses than usual. Once the first race got away it was the home fleet that took the early lead and asserted their dominance with a 1st Ben Pickering, 2nd Alex Berry and 3rd Mark Blackham. Clearly, they were used to the shiftiness of the small lake!

After the first race, there was time for a quick return to shore for hot lunch and drinks served up by the club, followed by a quick bit of boat tuning to suit the conditions.

The second race of the day soon got under way and again it was Ben Pickering who, even having been out of the class for some while, showed his form with another convincing win. Followed by Ben Harden (Burnham SC) and then Alex Berry.

Race 3 and conditions continued to stay consistently inconsistent. With the shifts making for huge gains and losses. This time it was Simon Beddows (Reading SC) who would challenge Ben P for the front, fortunately for Ben P he stayed strong and rounded off the day with 3 wins from 3. Simon followed closely behind with Alex Berry continuing his consistent day with another 3rd.

Day one was rounded off with a very boozy curry night, live music from The Fazys and a surprise appearance from a certain pink flamingo.

Sunday dawned and wind conditions where a stark contrast to day 1. Wind had changed 180 degrees and built to a 15 gusting 25knts. Paired with the sore heads and 3 back to back races, it was bound to make for an interesting day.

Race 4, and it was time for the big boys to shine. Martin Hattersley (Chase SC) and Malcom Hutchings battled out at the front for the first few legs. And then, no surprise, Ben P worked his way back to the front of the fleet and took his 4th win. After some interesting gybe mark moments, position changes were inevitable. 2nd was Martin Hattersley and 3rd Alex Berry.

Race 5, by this time the fleet was already tiring, and several sailors opted for an early pack away with the breeze proving to much. At least the wind and cold moments in the water had dispersed any hangovers. This time it was current National Champion, Eden Hyland (Chase SC), who'd show his big wind skills and take the win. Ben P just needed a half decent result and the event was in the bag. He followed just behind Eden. 3rd place went to a newbie Blazer, Nick Tolhurst (Burnham SC), who despite the wind and having only sailed the boat 3 times managed to hold onto the end.

The final race of the weekend and numbers on the start line were considerably down from the full entry list. As either gear failure, body fatigue or general reasonable thinking came into play. Ben Pickering, having already won the event now the discard was about to kick in, opted for an early pack away. This time it was Ben Harden, Josh Hyland and Sam Pickering, who was sporting a MK1 blaze, to battle out for the final win of the weekend. Ben Harden took the final win of the weekend with Sam 2nd and Josh 3rd.

Thanks to Chase Water Sailing Club and all the volunteers for hosting an absolutely fantastic weekend. We will be back!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st840Ben PickeringChase SC11112(DNC)6
2nd846Ben HardenBurnham SC52‑946118
3rd839Eden HylandChase SC76‑861525
4th559Sam PickeringChase SC1410‑2184238
5th827Hugh KingdonNorth Devon YC119‑12912748
6th732Paul BuckleyRoyal Corinthian YC9‑2662010651
7th807Nick RipleyPaignton SC12813711(RET)51
8th774Mark BlackhamChase SC371519(RET)1155
9th1764Adam FroggattChase SC1512195(RET)455
10th751Josh HylandChase SC251114(RET)5358
11th843Chris DyerNorth Devon YC20147117(RET)59
12th1559Alex BerryChase SC2333(RET)RET65
13th661Nic TolhurstBurnham SC/Royal Corinthian YC62711183(RET)65
14th789John WorthingtonPaignton SC‑2915241717881
15th837Gareth HylandChase SC1818102820(RET)94
16th821Julian OwensPembrokshire YC262332109(DNC)100
17th828Paul TatemNorth Devon YC2130‑35221612101
18th833Martin HattersleyChase SC134302(RET)DNC103
19th799Richard BottingDraycote Water SC‑4135391689107
20th838Dave WatkinsChase SC1921173321(DNC)111
21st772Tim FreemanWarsash SC3317311418(RET)113
22nd759David ShaftoBurghfield SC2819182325(DNC)113
23rd800Simon BeddowsReading SC452(RET)RETDNC119
24th780Oliver MurrayBlackpool & Fleetwood YC3843‑46131510119
25th805Alan GoulePaignton SC(UFD)3616312313119
26th712Nigel McKennaHollowell SC3922341214(UFD)121
27th797Mike HolmesPaignton SC2440‑43262214126
28th811Pete BarlowBurghfield SC23162215(RET)DNC130
29th836Malc HutchingsBurnham SC/Royal Corinthian YC829535(RET)DNC131
30th826Andy McIvorBlackwater SC10134(DNC)DNCDNC135
31st761Tim MorganPaignton SC4237‑44301915143
32nd568Rob FroudHornsea SC362827(RET)13DNC158
33rd614Bob LadellKing George SC45‑4949252416159
34th810Andrew ChorltonPaignton SC27322034(DNC)RET167
35th781David EntwistleBurghfield SC162026(DNC)DNCDNC170
36th764Matt LutwycheChase SC35392321(RET)RET172
37th844Andrew TaylorBlackpool & Fleetwood YC172528(UFD)DNCDNC178
38th710Grahan G. SlaterPaignton SC32414224(RET)RET193
39th812Pip WarnerHornsea SC223138(DNC)DNCDNC199
40th809Andy MawBurghfield SC313329(RET)DNCDNC201
41st779Andy WhitcherPembrokshire YC342441(RET)DNCDNC207
42nd829Bob CowanWarsash SC403425(DNC)DNCDNC207
43rd513Mark SmithPaignton SC(UFD)383329RETDNC208
44th796Bob YatesBurghfield SC37464036(DNC)DNC213
45th680Colin SpenceChase SC44424732(RET)DNC219
46th755Bernie StanforthTudor SC305037(DNC)DNCDNC225
47th538Tim RobinsonHollowell SC47454537(DNC)DNC228
48th619Nathan VyseChase SC(UFD)51DNC27DNCDNC240
49th763Peter McFarlaneBurghfield SC(UFD)4436RETRETDNC242
50th77Andy WilsonIsland Barn SC434748(RET)DNCDNC246
51st757Seb CaunterPaignton SC4648(RET)DNCDNCDNC256
52nd804Tim HeatonYorkshire Dales SC(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC270
52nd813Mike LyonsBurghfield SC(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC270

Dates for the Diary:

  • Blaze Nationals 2020 - Stone Sailing Club - 5th - 7th June
  • Northern Championships 2020 - Hornsea Sailing Club - 25th - 26th April
  • South Western Championships 2020 - Paignton Sailing Club - 9th - 10th May
  • Southern Championships 2020 - Warsash Sailing Club - 16th - 17th May
  • Eastern Championships 2020 - Wilsonian Sailing Club - 4th - 5th July
  • Inlands 2020 - TBC


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