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Selden 2020 - LEADERBOARD

National Solo President's Trophy at Portchester Sailing Club

by Doug Latta 12 Jul 18:42 BST 11 July 2021

Portchester Sailing Club hosted the 2021 Solo Class President's Trophy on Sunday 11th July. It was fourth time lucky for the club which had planned Solo events in 2019 cancelled due to high wind and 2020 cancelled twice due to high winds and no wind!

Class President Doug Latta welcomed the 26 visitors and 6 local sailors to the club while keeping everything crossed that the relatively light winds would hold. Competitors rigged their boats from within the Portchester Castle grounds, marvelling at the age of the Roman fort dating back as far as AD285, later a Saxon and Norman castle. Meantime Club Sailing Secretary Steve Rukin and his family donned their chef's hats and provided bacon and sausage sandwiches to keep sailors fuelled for the three back-to-back races ahead. Race team Paul and Mariea Oakey, themselves renowned RS400 Sailors, briefed competitors from atop the club's race box supplementing the online briefing which described the sausage-triangle format with a leeward gate.

Assisted by the Club's keen youth contingent, sailors were helped afloat and the fleet were set loose to check the tidal effects, wind bends & shifts of the race area set to the east of Portchester Castle within Portsmouth Harbour. Ordinarily Portchester would enjoy steady SW breeze with little disturbance as prevailing winds pass over the low Gosport shores to the South. But thanks to the position of the Jetstream and unusual South Easterly wind direction this meant shifty and variable conditions were to be the order of the day.

15 to 25 degree shifts made the race team's job harder, but having kept the mark layers busy setting up, the first start sequence got under way quickly. With a somewhat Port biased line and the fleet keen as mustard to get their hands on the impressive glassware, a general recall ensued, followed quickly by a second. The third attempt got away under black flag, but not without a couple of sailors receiving BFD results. Local sailor Mark Oakey had borrowed a boat and the President's spare sail to make a speedy start and quickly opened up a very impressive lead of over half a leg. Oakey who had previously sailed with his dad and PRO Paul to win the RS400 Nationals and currently turning his hand to RS800 sailing was certainly quick to master the Solo! The chasing pack was lead by Guy Mayger with Mark Maskell and Fraser Hayden in hot contention. But the lead was never in doubt and Oakey took the gun. Major wind shifts and differences in pressure across the race-course had caused the fleet to try taking different sides of the beat and downwind legs, sometimes to great effect, sometimes to great disappointment.

Race 2 got under way cleanly under black flag and now it was the turn of Alex Butler who had been BFG in race 1 to demonstrate his exceptional skills at picking the right way to go - always following the pressure and pulling out an unassailable lead in the softening winds, Butler didn't put a foot wrong reading the clouds and water with near mathematical genius. Guy Mayger stepped up to keep the pressure on the Hayling Island sailor holding Richard Lovering also part of the Hayling Island 'massive' and mark Maskell at bay. Again the fleet suffered in the shifting conditions, describing the snakes and ladders effects as competitors found themselves going from mid-20's to early teen positions (or vice verse) in the space of one beat. In the hour-long race the pressure to hold position was intense, but when the counting was all done there were still a quarter of sailors who had recorded only single figure results after 2 races.

As the breeze started to fill in and swing further East, the race committee worked fast to adjust the course, and the deciding race again got under way cleanly under black flag. Now it was the turn of King George sailor Vince Horey to show his mettle and find some consistent pressure to move into the lead. Guy Mayger, who had sailed very consistently throughout did his best to catch Vince but had to settle for his score-line of three second-place results. Alex Butler fought hard and demonstrated his true class with a third place which put him on equal points with Mayger. Tim Lewis, had found a return to form to take 4th place while Mark Maskell was 5th.

With all the maths done, Alex's Butler's 1st place in race two ensured he was the leader in the tie-break, with Guy Mayger wishing for an earlier version of the tie-break rules but nonetheless happy with his 2nd place overall. Mark Maskell took 3rd overall, while local Mark Oakey was first Portchester SC boat and 4th overall.

Alex Butler thanked competitors for coming and the home team for their organisation which was now topped by a 'race tea' provided by the club. With the much-awaited finale in the Euros 2020 football final, competitors were keen to head home to support their team. With the benefit of hindsight and the result in that competition a deflating defeat for England, some might have stayed longer to continue enjoying the hospitality of the club.

The class now awaits with growing excitement the Rooster National Championships at Mounts Bay in August where 100 competitors are fully entered with another 30 plus sailors still on the waiting list.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1st5781Alex ButlerHISC(BFD)134
2nd5691Guy MaygerFelpham SC(2)224
3rd5779Mark MaskellBlackwater SC34(5)7
4th600Mark OakeyPortchester SC18(10)9
5th5704Tim LewisRYA5(13)49
6th5693Fraser HaydenPapercourt SC45(9)9
7th5831Richard LoveringHISC(7)3710
8th5954Vince HoreyKing George SC12(19)113
9th5487Roger BennetSilver Wing SC67(11)13
10th5871Tim WadeLymington Town SC86(18)14
11th5393Simon DerhamLittleton SC9(10)615
12th5291Ed RogersSpinnaker SC13(14)821
13th4656Mark FlewPortchester SC / HISC10(17)1222
14th5914Paul DavisLymington Town SC(26)91423
15th5744Iain MgregorSalcombe Yacht Club1711(21)28
16th6000Doug LattaPortchester SC11(27)1930
17th4679Mark FullerPapercourt SC15(25)1530
18th5354Robin MilledgeLymington Town SC1912(20)31
19th5771Tim JacksonPapercourt Sailing Club18(21)1331
20th5836Mark HarperDell Quay SC1615(24)31
21st5668Peter BinningDell Quay SC1423(28)37
22nd4956Chris HopkinsWeir Wood SC2316(26)39
23rd5570Malcolm BuchanonLymington Town SC24(26)1640
24th5923Jamie MorganRutlamd SC(27)241741
25th5168Stephen HolcroftDell Quay SC20(22)2242
26th5374Chris DavesPortchester SC21(30)2344
27th4669Alan FullerPapercourt SC22(31)2547
28th5900Andy HylandLymington Town SC(DSQ)18DNS50
29th5369Andrew RitchieHykenham SC(BFD)20RET52
30th5110Ross UnderwodPortchester SC25(28)2752
31st5526Neil BurdenPortchester SC28(29)2957

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