Please select your home edition
Ocean Safety 2021 - LEADERBOARD

Blaze Fathom Trophy at Royal Corinthian Yacht Club, Burnham

by Phil Aspinall 12 Jun 2020 13:02 BST 7 June 2020

Racing finally returned to the RCYC with the first 2 races of the Blaze fleet. The anticipation was palpable especially after 12 weeks of lockdown and tension increased further when the wind played its part and racing was deferred from Saturday to Sunday.

Yet even so, at 11:05 on Sunday 7th June, 10 competitors from the ever expanding Blaze fleet cleared the start line at the end of the club pontoon and headed up river to West Quay in Race 1 of the Fathom Trophy series and the first competitive RCYC race of the COVID year

Malcolm Hutchings (836) led from the pontoon end as Nic Tolhurst (661) circled the pin-end just in case he'd been OCS. The westerly breeze at 13-15 knots was at the top end of the new "considerate and conservative" scale yet, despite general rustiness, all boats stayed the right way up as they turned at West Quay and reached for No2, gybed their way to No.5 and fetched back across to the pontoon to complete the first of 2 laps.

Hutchings had streched out a lead, Tolhurst had recovered to 2nd hotly pusued by Paul Buckley (732) and Trevor Bawden (705). Nick Milton (719) decided he needed more match fitness and returned to the pontoon desparate for the early beer that he can't have until July. Lap 2 saw Hutchings extend his lead and the podium positions stayed unchanged.

Race 2 had an equally conservative start with Buckley accelerating hard to the middle of the line and leading a much more together fleet on a repeat of the same course....and the fleet stayed closer together for both laps with several position changes in the upper/mid fleet as Charlie Matthews (666) and Robert Coyle (844) got into the groove. The final positions probably reflected the amount of post-lockdown sailing as Hutchings and Tolhurst secured another 1-2 combination with Coyle only a boat length behind in 3rd.

A socially distancing safety boat crew took the great photo of the start with the clubhouse in the background. Thanks to Team Kahneeta for the race management and keeping it simple ("go to the yellow buoy then the red buoy then the green buoy then the orange buoy until I say stop).

By and large, a great return to competitive sailing for the club. No dramas, plenty of scope to expand the number of competitors and all bodes well for round 2 in 2 weeks time and then onwards to Squib racing and an open clubhouse.

Related Articles

Blaze Eastern Championships at Burnham
Miniature boat racing adds amusement to evening social The 2020 Blaze Easterns was my first event in the Blaze and it was a matter of hanging on (quite often to the centreboard) for survival in the strong winds. This time round I was prepared and had even acquired a Fire sail "just in case". Posted on 24 Aug
Aberdeen & Stonehaven YC Annual Regatta
Not all dolphins followed the SIs Following the easing of restrictions, it was good to see 13 visitors joining a healthy local fleet for the annual ASYC regatta held in Stonehaven bay. The 10 strong D-Zero class looking to use this Northern traveller event as a warm up for the nationals. Posted on 22 Aug
What's their secret?
We speak to the classes which are seeing a boom in attendance The sailing landscape is changing just as fast as life in general. While some classes have struggled with this, others have embraced it and are seeing huge growth as a result. Posted on 28 Jun
Blaze Nationals at Paignton
Biggest turnout in the history of the class! The Hartley Boats Blaze Nationals took place over the 11th - 13th June, hosted by Paignton SC on the waters of Torbay with an astonishing 70 boats making the final score card. Posted on 18 Jun
Blaze National Championships Runners and Riders
Entries about to hit an all-time high as the fleet gets set for Paignton Entry for the Blaze Nationals is about to hit an all-time high and with only one weekend left before the fleet takes to the big open waters of Torbay at Paignton Sailing Club we thought it would be great to establish "who to put your money on". Posted on 1 Jun
Blaze Southern Championship at Warsash
New sail unveiled at the event After what felt like an eternity, Warsash Sailing Club resumed open event racing and hosted the Southern Championship. With 17 boats in attendance, there was of course a little bit of palpable nervousness. Posted on 25 May
Blaze Northerns at Dee
The first regional championship of 2021 for the fleet Saturday 15th May and four travellers met with the three home helms at the picturesque club of Dee Sailing Club for the first Regional Championships of the Blaze fleet. Posted on 20 May
Blazes at Burghfield
Champagne conditions were a little fizzy at times The first open meeting of the year at Burghfield, and for the Blaze class, attracted 16 entries and included five visitors. Champagne conditions were ordered and that is what we got, if it was a little fizzy at times! Posted on 28 Apr
Blaze Class ready and rearing to go
The 2021 season is looking like a good one! The Blaze class is ready and rearing to go for the 2021 season, and it looks promising for the class with six main events already scheduled almost 50 sailors entered for the 2021 National Championships. Posted on 27 Mar
Update from Burghfield Sailing Club
Autumn Falling Leaves Pursuit draws 88 boats As the Summer moves into Autumn, Burghfield Sailing Club continues to be very busy. The Autumn Falling Leaves Pursuit Race is proving a very popular draw and five races into the series a total of 88 boats have competed so far. Posted on 29 Oct 2020