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Wayfarer Western Area Championship at Arun Yacht Club

by Nick Rusbridge 29 Oct 2019 06:56 GMT 19-20 October 2019
2017 Wayfarer National Championship at Arun © Sue Blessett

After re-arranging this event from August, Arun YC was pleased to welcome 11 visitors and 5 boats.

On Saturday, the competitors had a WSW F4 -5 with a choppy sea state. However, the Race Management Team was still able to get in the three scheduled races. There had been a rumour that a fourth race may be added on the day, but after three very challenging races, the fleet was more than happy to be returned to the safety of the harbour.

Race One had a keenly contested start but after a testing first beat, Andrew and Tom Wilson were first to round the windward mark. They then extended their lead on some exciting downwind legs. Leaving the rest of the fleet to battle for the remaining four places.

Race Two saw Andrew and Tom get away and hold onto the lead until the finish line. The wind strength increased further, making for a very exhausting race. Well it was for those of us at the back of the fleet, Andrew and Tom made it look very easy indeed. Scott giving his recently acquired Mk4 an outing (Blueberry Pie) ably crewed by Sue soon got to grips with the testing conditions and showed he will be a force to contented with next year.

By the time Race Three started, the current had changed which caught out a few competitors and meant the windward mark was over stood by some boats, that was Brian Lamb's excuse anyway! Andrew and Tom were again leading the fleet, and even had time to capsize with the spinnaker up and still secure second place. This allowed Dave Roberts and Tegwyn to capitalise and turn their 2nd place into a 1st across the finish line.

In the evening, the sailors enjoyed a warming meal and a live band. Everyone had lots of stories to share, not to mention bruises to compare from the day's racing, and were all feeling ready for a good night's sleep.

On Sunday, the weather gods were kind and gave us perfect sailing conditions. The NNE F4 meant a flat sea, which both the competitors and the Race Team were happy to see.

Race Four again saw Andrew and Tom establish a lead which they consolidated throughout the race. Paul and Cam Hughes were OCS by the smallest of margins but thought they were okay, as Dave Roberts and Tegwynn, thinking they were the culprits, had gone back to repair their non-OCS.

Race Five had everyone pushing for a good start and this time all got away fine. The shifting wind made for an interesting beat to the windward mark. Once again, Andrew and Tom got to the mark first but this time they were closely followed by Brian Lamb and his substitute crew Tristram Webb (from Arun YC), with the remainder of the fleet in hot pursuit. Local knowledge wasn't helping Paul and Cam who, through some tactical errors, found themselves having to catch up on the last lap. They too joined the Wilsons in the capsize club when they got caught out by a gust on the final downwind leg.

Race Six. The final race saw the Wilsons show another clean pair of heels and gave us all a great demonstration of how to get the best out of a Wayfarer. Paul and Cam had decided that it wasn't their day and retired.

As you may gather, Andrew and Tom won all the trophies.

Congratulations to them and thank you to Arun YC from all the competitors for hosting this event. Also to Nick Rusbridge for all the administration and to the Race and Safety Teams, along with the Beach Team, entry desk, galley and bar made for a successful and fun event. Race Officer, Paisley Thompson and her team did a great job setting some excellent courses, especially on Saturday, when a rocking and rolling committee boat severely tested the sea legs of those onboard.

This was the penultimate event in the Craftinsure sponsored UK Wayfarer National Circuit and Travellers Series 2019. There remains the Finale to be hosted by Bough Beech SC on 9/10 November at which the scores will be counted to award the overall Series trophies and also the grand draw will be held. Supporters of the grand draw include Craftinsure, Hartley Boats, McNamara Sails, Allen Brothers and Pinnell & Bax.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st11093Andrew WilsonTom WilsonDatchet Water SC11‑21115
2nd10673David RobertsTegwyn TrickeBough Beech SC‑32133211
3rd11170Brian LambTristram WebbWilsonian SC2‑5422313
4th10878Scott HamiltonS RiobridgerDWSC‑53344418
5th11129Paul HughesCam HughesArun YC445(OCS)5DNS24

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