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RS Aero Open at Lymington Town Sailing Club

by RS Aero UK Class Association 18 May 2021 12:08 BST 15 May 2021

WOW what a day! 65 RS Aero sailors arrived at Lymington full of anticipation. This was a new RS Aero Class record for attendance at a one day open meeting and the forecast was fully loaded!

The tide was set to turn half way through the racing, which is perfect for a varied race day. However, a south-westerly wind was also expected to build against that tide to create an increasingly exciting sea state and wind strength. The fleet was duly forewarned of the likelihood of progressively testing conditions and the probability of wobbly water. However, they could also looked forward to the earlier races being much easier, which would then provide something for everyone. The stage was set for a big day on the western Solent, it was going to be memorable and the hosts were keen to try to ensure that those memories were pleasant ones!

True to forecast, sailors arrived with an easterly wind. As they rigged there was not a breath. Sailing to the race area in a gentle 6kn from the southwest they must have wondered what all the fuss was about! Right on cue for Race 1 start time the wind rose to 12kn, which then saw a very pleasant 12-14kn through the race with beating against the tide. By Race 2 the wind had built to a feisty 18kn, gusting 23kn, and the tide was starting to turn. As the last boats finished the wind then started to drop right off with the fleet sitting in a northerly of about 5kn under postponement for just 20 minutes between races.

Thanks to WeatherFile at Hurst the race officer knew the SW breeze was coming back at us with a vengeance. As it hit the 5 minute gun sounded for the final race with the course already set perfectly square as if by magic! A 'fresh but not quite frightening' 20kn wind gusting 25kn against a strong ebb put the fleet to the test as the tide waves quickly built. Forewarned is forearmed and the fleet managed admirably. Wild rides downwind produced several capsizes as sailors were challenged by the western Solent, however, for the large part they self rescued and continued on their way with the safety cover never stretched.

The series was set at three races and no discard with the racing deemed too valuable to throw a third of the day away by dropping a score! Therefore the challenge for the racers was to keep alphabet scores off their results sheet. That was not so easy with the challenging conditions and with the tide sweeping sailors over the start line several sailors eventually fell foul of the Black Flag later in the day.

There was some spectacular sailing in the strong winds across the reaches of the trapezium with the run providing the test of balance and handling whilst veering through the confused sea. Once at the leeward mark the western Solent conveyer belt was full engaged, ready to sweep everyone on a free ride upwind back to the top mark again!

Greg Bartlett (Starcross) and Peter Barton (Lymington Town) swapped the 1sts and 2nds in the RS Aero 7 fleet with Peter's first two race wins enough to seal the title. A consistent 4,3,4 secured third for Noah Rees (Torpoint and Cawsand) just ahead of Craig Williamson (Staunton Harold). Paul Bartlett (Starcross) took the Masters title in 8th after a quick dip in Race 2 cost a few points. Top Youth was Sam Brackley (Felpham).

Ex RS Aero 5 World Champ Andrew Frost (Sutton Bingham) came to form after the breeze arrived with a dominant 2,1,1 with rising star and Top Youth Will Homewood (Lymington Town) in 2nd with a solid 4,2,2. Richard Bullock (Itchenor) won Race 1 to take 3rd overall. Top Lady and double Olympic Gold Medallist Sarah Gosling (Keyhaven) made light work of her RS Aero 5 in the breeze after being more used to hiking a Yngling flat for 4th, pipping Euan Etheridge (Lymington Town) in 5th.

Many thanks to the small army of Lymington Town SC volunteers that it takes to but on an event like this. Race officer Rob Martin expertly enabled a completed schedule of excellent racing on what was a very testing but rewarding day. Thanks to Rooster, Harken, Selden and Noble Marine for the awesome spread of prizes.

Next up for the UK RS Aeros is the RS Aero UK Southern Championships at WPNSA in Weymouth on 29/30th May and online entry is open!

RS Aero UK events list

Movie by Jason Ludlow

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubM / YLadyR1R2R3Pts
RS Aero 5
1st1312Andrew FrostSutton Bingham SC  2114
2nd2936Will HomewoodLymington Town SCYouth 4228
3rd3305Richard BullockItchenor SC  17614
4th2919Sarah GoslingKeyhaven YC Lady36514
5th1551Euan EtheridgeLymington Town SCYouth 93416
6th1568Caitlin AtkinStarcross YC Lady54716
7th3661Graham TribbeckLee‑on‑Solent/ Hill Head SC  155323
8th2505Tom WharmbyLymington Town SCYouth 129930
9th1566Abby HireLymington Town SCYouthLady717832
10th3303Sammy Isaacs‑JohnsonMaidenhead SC  68DNC37
11th1705Kate WharmbyLymington Town SCYouthLady14131037
12th3700Beth MilledgeLymington Town SC Lady18101240
13th2146Simon ToppingPoole YC  17121342
14th2551Julie WillisLymington Town SCMasterLady19151145
15th2949Jenny BennettLymington Town SCMasterLady816DNC47
16th2620Emma McEwenRoyal Lymington YC Lady1311DNC47
17th2677Jeff JacksonLee‑on‑Solent SCMaster 1614DNC53
18th2571Sarah DesjonqueresHighcliffe SC Lady10DNCDNC56
19th2468Dave HairsHighcliffe SC  11DNFDNC57
20th3017Sue HunterHighcliffe SCMasterLady20DNCDNC66
21st2955Mark HawkinsHighcliffe SCMaster DNCDNCDNC69
21st1402Peter ConwayLymington Town SCMaster DNCDNCDNC69
RS Aero 7
1st3597Peter BartonLymington Town SC  1124
2nd3174Greg BartlettStarcross YC  2215
3rd73Noah ReesTorpointMosquito/CawsandBay  43411
4th2719Craig WilliamsonStaunton Harold SC  34714
5th3000Steve NorburyWarsash SC  97319
6th3535Andy KilburnLymington Town SC  58821
7th1590Chris HattonLymington Town SC  610622
8th3438Paul BartlettStarcross YCMaster 109524
9th2890Andrew RawsonWeston SC  715931
10th1843Chris JenkinsBowmoor SC  8111231
11th2464Tim HazelWarsash SC  15141342
12th3342Jack MillerFelpham SC  12211043
13th3675Nigel RolfeBurghfield SCMaster 19191654
14th3397Matt PerkinsLymington Town SC  22231459
15th1891Samuel BrackleyFelpham SCYouth 27201562
16th2572Andy HillWarsash SCMaster 25221764
17th2738Spike DanielsHayling Island SCMaster 176DNC67
18th2673Jonathan BurnsSpinnaker SCMaster 1117DNC72
19th1038Nicholas ThorneWarsash SC  28271873
20th1232Tim NorrisWarsash SC  1813DNC75
21st3688Paul GardnerStokes Bay SC  DSQ241179
22nd2114Fernando GamboaLee‑on‑Solent SC  2412BFD80
23rd2384Simon GeymanDatchetWater/LymingtonTown  1326DNC83
24th3023Richard WatshamStarcross YC / RNSA  2316BFD83
25th2922Andrew WishartBroadwater SC  2118DNC83
26th3328Klaus HarrisSwanage SC  365DNC85
27th69Julius HornungDubai Offshore SC  29BFD1992
28th2199Chris BunceLymington Town SC  3025DNC99
29th3326Peter ChaplinBurghfield SCMaster 14DNFBFD102
30th2204Alan MarkhamLymington Town SCMaster 3128DNC103
31st3669Chris RustPortsmouth SC  16DNCDNC104
32nd3391Roop StockRoyal Lymington YC  20DNCDNC108
33rd0Edward ParsonsEmsworth SC  26DNCDNC114
34th1490Graham PlattHighcliffe SC  32DNCDNC120
35th1031Stuart PhilbeyDatchet Water SC  33DNCDNC121
36th1224Adrian WhaleySwanage SCMaster 34DNCDNC122
37th2504George HoskinsDatchet Water SCMaster 35DNFDNC123
38th1813Simon EtterDatchet Water SCMaster 37DNCDNC125
39th1332Nicholas RyleyRoyal Lymington YCMaster DNFDNCDNC132
39th2542Chris HughesWarsash SCMaster DNCDNCDNC132
39th2543Robin RussellWarsash SC  DSQDNCDNC132
39th2836James RusdenHighcliffe SC  DNFDNCDNC132
39th3170Nigel DakinSeafarers SC  DNCDNCDNC132

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