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Bough Beech Sailing Club Icicle 2020 - Day 1

by Nick Marden 7 Jan 06:50 GMT 5 January - 23 February 2020
Bough Beech Icicle 2020 day 1 © Trevor Chanter

Bough Beech Sailing Club celebrates its 50th year in 2020 and so it was symbolic that the annual Open Icicle series got off to a fine start on 5 January with 50 boats on the water. Over 20 of them came from seven neighbouring clubs.

Race Officer Jon Hill set a port hand trapezoid course for the 38 strong Conventional fleet including a second beat and run up the left hand side of the course. The Asymmetrical fleet sailed a simple windward/leeward course to the right.

The SW wind never got much above Force 3 favouring the lighter weather boats. The first race of the Conventional Fleet was won by BBSC Rear Commodore Guy Marks's Wayfarer, crewed by Sam Pygall. Second, after crossing the fleet on port from a perfectly timed pin end start, was BBSC Vice Commodore Richard Sharp's Finn, and third was the Wayfarer of John Clementson and Mel Titmus from Chipstead SC (last year's Icicle winners.) It was great to see three young sailors in Toppers in the top ten.

The Asymmetrical boats were led home by Eastbourne's Mick and Sarah Whitmore, last year's Assy fleet winners, in their RS400. Second were Matt Fowler and Lynne Ratcliffe (RS 200) from Pevensey Bay SC and third were local sailors Bruce Kidd and Liz Denbigh (2000).

During a very overcast afternoon the wind went agonisingly light and the Race Committee were probably wondering if they were going to need torches. Eventually the breeze returned. The Conventional fleet were blitzed by Clemetson and Titmus who comfortably got line honours, followed by Marks and Pygall and the Solo of Richard Southern (BBSC). The Whitmore's RS400 had a similarly emphatic victory in the Assymetrical fleet pm race with Fowler and Ratcliffe again in second. Trapeze boats, including a strong visiting Contender contingent from Hythe and Saltwood SC, had a sticky day, and will no doubt be hoping for more wind to stretch their legs next week.

The Icicle continues until 23 February with a further 14 races planned. As the races to count are half the total sailed plus one, there is plenty of time for others to enter the series. Single day entries are also welcome.

Results can be found here.

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