Please select your home edition
Edition
YY.com app (top)
Product Feature
Start Sailing by Andy Smith & Tim Davison
Start Sailing by Andy Smith & Tim Davison

Its a win for the Laser Standard Class in the RYA eSailing Spring Class Championship

by Emma Slater 22 Jun 2020 13:56 BST 20 June 2020
Class champs final race course - RYA eSailing Spring Class Championship © RYA

Whittled down from 788 racers, representing 26 different classes, the top 19 eSailing class champions took to the virtual waters on Saturday (20 June) to battle it out for the title of RYA eSailing Spring Class Champion.

Racing was incredibly tight throughout but it was Mike O'Donovan (Deja-Vu), representing the UK Laser Association - Laser Standard class, who, with some consistent racing throughout, clinched the championship title.

"It was really tight racing through-out and I'm really happy to win. It all came down to the final race where I had to make some strategic decisions," commented Mike.

With commentary provided by RYA Keelboat Development Manager, Jack Fenwick and Sam Usher, RYA NE Regional Development Officer, the final consisted of five, two lap races, with two discards and penalties resulting in racers being auto slowed for 10 seconds.

Mike started his championship campaign with a win in race one, closely followed by Sam Whaley for the WASZP class, who would end up challenging Mike (Laser Standard) throughout the final, coming in second and third going to Tom Jeffcote for the Scorpion class.

Arthur Henderson for the Merlin Rocket's clinched the best start, but fell back down the fleet due to too many penalties, "I had a great start, but it's more important to have a great finish", commented Arthur.

Race two and there was lots of bunching on the start line. At the first mark Arthur Farley for the Laser Radials was leading the fleet, being chased down by Rory Chalmers for the RC35 Scotland class, before Rory claimed a penalty and was pushed back to fourth.

Heading in to the final run and it was very close between the top three boats. Arthur pulled away but it still remained extremely close for second and third. Arthur held his lead and took the win for the Laser Radial, with second place going to Stephen Videlo for the Larks and Rory Chalmers taking third for the RC35 Scotland.

It was a battle for the pin end to start race three, with Mike O'Donovan (Laser Standard) once again challenging for a place at the head of the fleet. At the spreader mark the top three boats were within inches of each other, but as they came over the finish line it was a win for Liam Willis for the RS Aero 9, with Mike O'Donovan clinching second and Rory Chalmers (RC35 Scotland) taking third.

With no clear leader heading in to race four and with two discards available "it's all still to play for" commented Jack Fenwick.

It was a great start for Will Hitchman for the 2000 class, but it was Donnie Gillies, who is also currently the number one ranked UK esailor, for the GP14 class out at the front of the pack at the first mark, closely followed by Sam Whaley (WASZP).

With ten boats all on the port tack lay line, it was penalty after penalty at the rounding; luckily Donnie (GP14) got around unscathed and raced on for the win. Sam Whaley (WASZP) took a very close second, with less than a second between him and Donnie, and Dan Bullock (DanBullockArt) for the RS Aero 7 claiming third.

With the leader board extremely close, anything could happen in the last race!

RS Aero 7 racer Dan Bullock lead off the line but it was Arthur Farley (Laser Radial) who, with his spinnaker flying moved to the head of the fleet. Another interesting windward mark rounding but Arthur maintained the lead, followed closely by Donnie Gillies (GP14). Arthur continued to pull away from the fleet and went on to take the win. Rory Chalmers (RC35 Scotland) claiming second and Mike O'Donovan (Laser Standard) racing in to the third place.

  • Will Hitchman - 2000 - "A fantastic event with a very high standard of racing. Felt great to have some competitive sailing, in any way possible! A massive thanks to the RYA."

  • Donnie Gillies - GP14 - "Well done Mike. Another cool performance to win. Good racing though the fleet, very tough!"

  • Greg Eaton - Firefly - "Thanks to all the RYA staff for organising a great couple of weekends racing. Seriously competitive finals, so thanks to the other racers... well and truly thrashed."

"It was amazing to watch such close racing which can been seen with four different race winners from the five races. Well done to Mike on an impressive win, it was great to see it come down to a final race showdown and the tactical battle that created", commented RYA eSailing guru Adam McGovern.

Don't worry if you missed the action, you can still watch it on the RYA YouTube channel

As well as the claiming the Championship crown, Mike wins an Essential 45L Dry Tube, courtesy of Musto, a dryrobe plus a virtual Q&A session for their class with a member of the British Sailing Team.

Overall Results:

PosClassHelm
1UK Laser Association - Laser StandardMike O'Donovan
2UK Laser Association - Laser RadialArthur Farley
3WaszpSam Whaley
4RC35 ScotlandRory Chalmers
5RS Aero 7Dan Bullock
6GP14Donnie Gillies
7LarkStephen Videlo
8RS Aero 9Liam Willis
92000Will Hitchman
10Merlin RocketArthur Henderson
11International 2.4m RMegan Pascoe
12UK Laser Association - Laser 4.7Max Steele
13SB20Isabelle Waha
14RS Tera SportFreddie Sunderland
15StreakerGiles Therkelson‑Smith
16ScorpionTom Jeffcote
17MiracleIan Fryett
18FireflyGreg Eaton
19HornetJustin Jones

"The racing has been phenomenal throughout the whole championship, and the skill and quality of racing in the final is testament to that" commented Celia Edgington, RYA Shows and Promotions Manager. "We are delighted that so many racers and classes got involved in the championship, helping not only sailors to continue practicing and honing their race skills, but also as a means of keeping the racing community engaged and in touch with each other."

Next on the RYA eSailing calendar is the RYA Sailability eSailing Multiclass Regatta.

If you want to find out more about how you can get involved with eSailing or want to pick up some eSailing top tips then visit rya.org.uk/go/esailing for more information.

Love Boating? Then why not join the association that promotes and protects, safe, successful and rewarding British boating. Join today and support the RYA in protecting your boating rights and freedoms. Take advantage of free advice and support on all aspects of your boating, as well as enjoying a range of fantastic personal member offers. Find out more by calling 02380 604 159, email or visit www.rya.org.uk

Related Articles

Nord Stream Race eSeries exceeds expectations
240,000 international players started in three races on the gaming platform Virtual Regatta The premiere of the "Nord Stream Race eSeries" (NSR eSeries) exceeded the expectations of the organising St Petersburg Yacht Club in every way. Posted on 12 May
2021 Virtual Antigua Sailing Week - It's a wrap
A large number of the worldwide eSailing community took to the virtual waters Last week a large number of the worldwide eSailing community took to the virtual waters to participate in the virtual Antigua Sailing Week in an effort to be the winner of the premier challenge in the newly launched Antigua & Barbuda eSailing Nationals. Posted on 9 May
Get ready for the Canadian eSailing Championships
The top 10 competitors will qualify for the World Championships Canadian sailing fans will be able to transpose their skills from their boat to their computer with the launch of the inaugural Canadian eSailing Championships. Posted on 1 May
Virtual Semaine Olympique Française
Sailing on the virtual the bay of Hyères starts Monday From April 26 to May 2, the Semaine Olympique Française Toulon Provence Méditerranée 2021 will be virtual. As in 2020, the organising committee will be hosting a virtual Semaine Olympique Française on the Virtual Regatta Inshore game platform. Posted on 25 Apr
IOC makes landmark move into virtual sports
Sailing is part of the first-ever Olympic Virtual Series The International Olympic Committee (IOC) will partner with five International Sports Federations (IFs) and game publishers to produce the Olympic Virtual Series (OVS), the first-ever, Olympic-licensed event for physical and non-physical virtual sports. Posted on 22 Apr
eSailGP Championship returns with new innovations
New courses, new teams and new technology to kick-off eSailGP's second season With less than three weeks before the eight international teams meet on the water in Bermuda for the league's return to racing, SailGP today launched the 2021 eSailGP Championship. Posted on 1 Apr
Nord Stream Race launches eSport Regatta
Over 30,000 participants expected The Nord Stream Race (NSR), the longest offshore regatta in the Baltic Sea, traditionally takes place in summer from Kiel to St. Petersburg with stopovers in Copenhagen, Stockholm and Helsinki. Posted on 4 Mar
RYA eSailing Winter Club Championship Final
Racers ready for 3pm Sunday at the virtual RYA Dinghy Show Since the RYA announced the launch of the RYA eSailing Winter Club Championship at the virtual RYA Affiliated Clubs Conference last November, hundreds of club sailors have been taking their tactics and strategies onto the virtual waters. Posted on 26 Feb
America's Cup eSailing: AC75 Boundary Rule
Adam looks at AC75 racing on Virtual Regatta This week Adam looks at AC75 racing on Virtual Regatta, the course boundary and who has the right of way. Posted on 14 Feb
A New Sailor's Guide to eSailing
Learn with the RYA eSailing team and Virtual Regatta If you're new to sailing or want to get started in sailing, why not start learning now from the comfort of your own home! The Virtual Regatta game can help you learn some of the basic skills you'll need to get out on the water. Posted on 6 Feb