Please select your home edition
Edition app (top)

RYA National Match Racing Championship Series 2021 Qualifier at Burnham

by Paula Irish 15 Jul 06:11 BST 10-11 July 2021

Light airs at Burnham-on-Crouch made for a close finish in the second event of the RYA National Match Racing Championship Series 2021.

The Summer Match Racing 2 event in 707 keelboats was hosted by the Royal Corinthian YC, 10-11 July, and saw day one abandoned when the wind failed to arrive, with teams enjoying instead the hospitality of the club and a chance to catch up with friends.

The race team then managed to smash in nine flights in tricky light winds and strong tide on day two, enabling the eight teams entered to complete between three to six races each.

Joint overall winners were the teams of skippers Ted Blowers and Robbie King after each sailed and won four races without having the chance to compete against each other during the day, leaving them tied for first place.

Ted said: "It was so difficult for the race management team to set a course, they did well to get the event in given the conditions and the racing was good when we did it. When the number of races is limited it bunches up the results and because everyone else raced really well, it was really close overall. You only had to lose one race and you were out of the top few.

"For us the big learning point, especially with the tide, was that it was really important to know your time on distance. Getting that wrong had big consequences and it would be game over, which was kind of stressful but we were lucky enough to get it right most of the time."

Ted's team at Burnham had Amy Sparks on main and kite, Zak Bermon on jib and pit, and Patrick Bray on bow, and as Ted explains: "It was quite short courses so we needed good teamwork and Patrick had a bit on because it was ever-changing. You couldn't plan, you just had to make decisions, and he did a really good job."

Jack Fenwick of British Keelboat Sailing said: "It was a very light wind day with a lot of tide across the course, which had a big effect and meant that people had to work out their starting procedures differently. The breeze piped up to about 8 knots at the most but the matches were very close and everyone had a good time."

Joint winner Robbie King, sailing with Bethan Matthew, Callum Farnden, Haydn Sewell and Alex Colquitt, added: "We greatly enjoyed the weekend, and appreciated the race committee sticking at it with the sub-ideal forecast. The regatta is particularly sentimental for me, since I am planning to move to California in September to begin a PhD at Caltech, so this weekend is most likely my last British match racing regatta for a while."

The close results at the top of the leaderboard also saw a tie for third place with the teams of Alex Smallwood and Sophie Otter having an equal win rate. However, having raced each other in a match won by Alex, it was his team that was able to claim the spot on the podium.

Full results from the event can be found here and entry is now open for all the remaining upcoming events in the RYA Match Racing Series:

  • 4-5 September - Harken Youth Championships - Elliott 6Ms at WPNSA
  • 11-12 September - Marlow Ropes Women's Championships - Elliott 6Ms at WPNSA
  • 2-3 October - Summer Match Racing 3 - RS21s at Poole YC
  • 9-10 October - Summer Match Racing 4 (Ceilidh Cup) - Sonars at RN&CYC, Helensburgh
The winning teams from each event qualify to take part in the National Match Racing Championship Grand Final in RS21s at Queen Mary SC in October 2021. For further information and entry visit

Related Articles

Morrish wins Ceilidh Cup for RNCYC
Blustery conditions made for challenging match racing Blustery conditions made for challenging racing for the seven teams competing in the Ceilidh Cup / Scottish Student Sailing (SSS) Match Racing event, hosted at the Royal Northern and Clyde Yacht Club in Rhu, Scotland. Posted on 12 Oct
RYA Summer Match Racing Qualifier 3 at Poole
Home win for Olympian Kate Macgregor and her team It was a home win for Olympian Kate Macgregor and her team at the RYA Summer Match Racing Qualifier 3 over a breeze-on weekend at Poole Yacht Club. Posted on 6 Oct
Marlow Ropes Women's Match Racing Championship
Cumpsty claims crown at the WPNSA The Marlow Ropes Women's Match Racing Championship returned to Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy with glamour conditions and epic racing. Posted on 16 Sep
RYA to launch pioneering online programme
Teaching yacht and keelboat racing essentials For the past twenty years the RYA has been running programmes to help young sailors transition from dinghy racing into yacht and keelboat racing. Posted on 8 Oct 2020
Fresh start to 2020 match racing season
Blowers wins again at the WPNSA High winds were forecast for most of the weekend so it was some trepidation that the eight teams headed out in to Portland Harbour in winds of around 30 knots but it wasn't long before racing was under way. Posted on 14 Jan 2020
Blowers crowned National Match Racing Champion
Queen Mary host the culmination of 13 qualifiers Fourteen teams representing the culmination of 13 qualifiers over the past twelve months of the National Match Racing Championships gathered at Queen Mary Sailing Club in London this weekend to decide who would be the next team to have their names engrave Posted on 19 Nov 2019
Royal Thames YC triumph at British Keelboat League
Eighteen teams representing 16 clubs gathered in the Solent With club honour at stake each team was going to give it their all and so they took advantage of the offer by the host club, the Royal Thames Yacht Club, to get in a quick training session in their J/70s on the Friday morning. Posted on 1 Oct 2018
Marlow Ropes Women's Match Racing Championship
Owen relishes in favourites tag at the WPNSA Octavia Owen and her West Kirby team clinched the 2018 Marlow Ropes Women's Match Racing Championship at Weymouth & Portland National Sailing Academy on 8-9 September confirming their status as pre-event favourites. Posted on 11 Sep 2018
British Keelboat League qualification complete
After big weekend of action at opposite ends of the country The weekend of 18-19 August saw not one but two British Keelboat League Qualifiers taking place at opposite ends of the country. Posted on 24 Aug 2018
British Keelboat League at Torbay
Clubs battle each other and the scorching heat for honours on the English Riviera West Hoe Sailing Club clinched victory in the latest round of the British Keelboat League as six teams from six clubs did battle in Torbay, Devon. Posted on 25 Jun 2018