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RS400 Rope4Boats Northern Tour at Yorkshire Dales Sailing Club

by Sam Waller 24 Jun 2021 13:43 BST 19-20 June 2021
RS400 Rope4Boats Northern Tour © Tom Penty

Round 3 of the Rope4Boats RS400 Northern Tour will be remembered by those who attended as "The Black Flag Regatta" with every race having the black flag flown to try and holdback the eager 19 boats that took part at Yorkshire Dales Sailing Club.

Saturday started with a shifty South Easterly 7 knot breeze with occasional 10 knot gusts and the odd bit of sunshine. After two general recalls and the blag flag being raised the fleet finally started racing after the third start and found Neil and Ian Parkhurst (Beaver SC) rounding the windward mark first closely followed by Dave Exley and Alastair Coates (Leigh and Lowton SC) and the rest of the fleet. By the time the fleet had got to the leeward gate Dave/Alastair and Ollie Groves and Sam Waller (Beaver SC) had gained a gap from the fleet with Ollie/Sam holding out for the race win.

Race 2, Dave and Alastair lead from start to finish with Ben Williamson and Charlie Ticehurst (Ripon SC) managing to grab second in front of Wayne Fletcher and Martin Cooper (Scaling Dam SC) before the fleet went in for lunch.

In the afternoon the wind had increased to 10-15 knots and swung easterly with the wind coming down the lake enabling a longer course. Race 3 Ollie and Sam lead the whole way with Dave and Alastair never too far behind and on the final rounding of the windward mark Dave and Alastair had pressure and planed towards Ollie and Sam before sneakily taking the race win right at the end.

Race 4 had consistent planning conditions with Chris Pickles and Matt Sharman (Bassenthwaite SC) being the only boat that made the left side of the beat pay giving Dave and Alastair a run for their money at the front with Wayne and Martin never too far behind in third. Ollie and Sam had to battle against Martin Penty and Luke Dickinson (Beaver SC) for fourth as the rest of the fleet had some close encounters at the leeward gate throughout the race.

Dave and Alastair were overnight leaders as the competitors enjoyed a BBQ on a pleasant sunny evening.

Sunday was forecast to be 10-20 knots with rain but it appeared it had blown through early in the night as we were met with a cooler NE 8-12 knot breeze.

Race 5 was Wayne and Martin's turn to give Dave and Alastair a fight for first but once again Dave and Alastair downwind speed prevailed.

Race 6 once again found Dave and Alastair at the front with Chris/Matt and Ollie/Sam closely behind. On the final run Ollie and Sam managed to get by Chris and Matt as they gybed later for the lay line but fortunately for both boats Dave/Alastair hadn't noticed the shortened course flag being raised and managed to nick 1st and 2nd. It later turned out Dave/Alastair were black flagged for that race anyway.

Finally race 7 got away however four boats had been black flagged, Hamish Gledhill and Ness Evans (West Riding SC) were in the mix amongst Chris/Matt, Dave/Alastair and Ollie/Sam battling for first. Ollie and Sam managed to find pressure down the right side of the second downwind leg to find the front of the fleet with Chris and Matt working the right side of the next beat to keep pressure on them with Hamish/Ness and Dave/Alastair Closely following to the finish.

Dave Exley and Alastair Coates (Leigh and Lowton SC) finished the day as they started as the weekend's winners, followed by Ollie Groves and Sam Waller (Beaver SC) in 2nd and Wayne Fletcher and Martin Cooper (Scaling Dam SC) in 3rd.

A huge thanks to Yorkshire Dales SC for managing to go ahead with the regatta under the circumstances and Ian Escritt and his team for a great weekend's racing along with the galley and their lovely food as always.

Rope4Boats vouchers were won by Erica Caswell (YDSC) and Neil Pankhurst (Beaver SC). Rope4Boats hats were won by John Simms, Peter Slingsby (YDSC), Ben Williamson and Charlie Ticehurst (Ripon SC).

The Rope4Boats Northern Tour now moves on to the iconic Lord Birkett Memorial Trophy at Ullswater in the Lake District on 3rd and 4th July.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7Pts
1st1460Dave ExleyAlistair CoatesLeigh & Lowton21111(OCS)‑46
2nd1316Ollie GrovesSam WallerBeaver1‑624‑5119
3rd1428Wayne FletcherMartin CooperScaling Dam‑733324(OCS)15
4th1283Chris PicklesMatt SharmanBassenthwaite SC6‑852(OCS)2217
5th1492Martin PentyLuke DickinsonBeaver47‑8545(OCS)25
6th1511Hamish GledhillNess EvansWest Riding SC(OCS)56‑767327
7th932Jonathan LyeMilly Latham 3‑1010‑1273629
8th1518Ben WilliamsonCharlie TicehurstRipon82‑998(RET)734
9th572Barry ThorntonNick Hunt (OCS)978(OCS)6535
10th874John Gay Amanda HendersonLochaber SC911(OCS)1038(OCS)41
11th1508Richard CatchpoleGary CoopLeigh & Lowton5446(DNS)(DNS)DNS42
12th1123Carl WhiteheadCarol Milner/OllieFiley SC10‑16111110‑13951
13th1131Erica CaswellIan CaswellYDSC1312‑15‑14991053
14th1362Neil PankhurstIan PankhurstBeaver111313‑171110(OCS)58
15th1133Lester MulliganTim HaskinsYDSC‑14‑1514131212859
16th1161Chris JonesRobert TempleTreaddur Bay SC12‑1712151311(DNS)63
17th1248Wolfi DyerAndrea DalstonYDSC1514‑16‑1614151270
18th532John SimmsPeter SlingsbyYDSC1618(DNS)(DNS)(OCS)141182

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