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Heron Southern Championship at Bewl Sailing Association

by Jo Mayes & Amanda Conrad 8 Jun 2021 07:00 BST 5-6 June 2021

Sailors at the Heron Southerns hosted by Bewl Sailing Association were greeted by sunshine, fair weather cumulus clouds and variable light winds. There were representatives from four clubs.

Colin Nutt, Bewl's expert Race Officer, managed to set a triangular course on Saturday then changed the windward leg as the wind varied. Four races were sailed on Saturday because the forecast for the following day suggested very little wind. This ensured that the series could be completed albeit without discards.

Dave Butler, the reigning champion, made a poor start in the first race yet he was still first round the windward mark, closely followed by Jo Mayes. Indeed in all six races Dave rounded the windward mark first. He continued to open up his lead and was never really challenged by other sailors.

Although Dave Butler won all the races, the other positions varied depending on the ability of helms to read and respond to the multiple wind shifts. There was a close finish to the second race, with five boats crossing the line within one minute. Sean Chapman had his best result in this race. Peter Moulton and Andrea Gibson sailed single-handed which was an advantage when the wind dropped. They came second and third respectively in the fourth race.

As forecast there was little wind on Sunday morning, and the Race Officer discussed postponing until midday with the sailors. By this time a sea breeze came in and gradually freshened. The first race on Sunday was rather slow and tedious so the Race Officer finished the fleet after a single lap. However, in the second race of the day and the final one of the weekend, everyone enjoyed sailing in a more exhilarating wind.

The majority of boats made good starts throughout the event, but it was the skill of seeing and responding to the shifts in the fickle winds that determined the order at the end of each race. James Russ and his crew Maggie Bolton made good use of their newly fitted spinnaker, as boats flying spinnakers had an advantage with the wind coming from behind, but sometimes needed to snatch them down when the wind changed dramatically.

Dave Butler came first in the overall results, with Jo Mayes in second place. Despite having equal points, James Russ pipped Andrea to third place. Chipstead Sailing Club was awarded the Team Trophy.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHcapBoat NameHelmCrewClub
1103501345Tiger MonkeyDave ButlerEmily ClixbyWelton Sailing Club
2103431345Little EgretJo MayesAmanda ConradBewl Sailing Association
3100891345Magic GlebeJames RussMaggie BoltonChipstead SC
4103231325ButterflyAndrea Gibson Wivenhoe Sailing Club
5100191325Simply StunningPeter Moulton Chipstead SC
693411345AvocetSean ChapmanCarol MartinChipstead SC

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