Please select your home edition
The Cruising Village 2021 - LEADERBOARD

Larks at the Salcombe Gin Regatta

by Harry Pynn 13 Aug 08:09 BST 1-6 August 2021
Larks at the Salcombe Gin Regatta © Flora Winter

The annual Salcombe Gin Regatta is fast becoming one of the must do fixtures of the Lark calendar. A fantastic holiday town, beach fun at Mill Bay, navigating the beautiful Kingsbridge Estuary, not to mention the hot competition, it's easy to see the appeal.

UK holiday accommodation in 2021 has been hard to come by, but the Larks are a resourceful bunch and a raft of cruising yachts on the visitors moorings proved to be an ideal solution that looks to be repeated next year. Chris Allen had sailed from Hayling Island and tagged the regatta on the end of his family yachting holiday in the South West. Dan Watson and Flora Winter travelled the furthest, having sailed their yacht all the way from the East Coast.

This year's event featured a number of former Lark National champions drawn back to the fleet by a boat suited to all comers.

It was a week of two halves. The first four races were sailed in force 2 to 3, before the windier conditions kicked in for the final 2 days. Salcombe did not disappoint with ample opportunities for place changing and big leads diminished in the blink of an eye.

The first 3 races were all won by Harry Pynn and Gemma Cook who found some epic tacking battles to their liking.

In race 1, Chris Allen and Ann Ashworth snuck past Tim Fells and Ben Meek just before the finish line to take 2nd.

In race 2, John and Vicky Brickwood were unable to keep Pynn and Cook behind them and had to settle for 2nd place. Megan Brickwood and Connor Dickson enjoyed this one, coming through to 4th by the finish.

In race 3, Fells and Meek were leading on the final beat and elected to cover the Brickwoods allowing Pynn and Cook through.

Race 4 was more interesting as the course was set to go to sea. On the start line, more pressure and a favourable shift made the right hand end appealing. Allen and Ashworth took the bait and while it didn't look too bad initially, they stayed on the west side of the estuary all the way out to sea and by the time they reached the turning mark they were a long way behind. The Brickwoods judged the beat to perfection and kept Fells and Meek behind them to win the race.

The wind had increased significantly for Race 5. The Brickwoods revelled in the conditions to take their second win far ahead of the war of attrition behind them as boat and crew breakages took their toll. Pynn and Cook, with a jury rigged kicker, overtook Allen and Ashworth to take 2nd.

The final race had 30 knot gusts. The Brickwoods could win the event if Pynn and Cook finished worse than 2nd, but unfortunately for them, everyone else was too broken from the previous day's sailing to race. The Brickwoods spotted a big squall and ditched their spinnaker in time leaving Pynn and Cook floundering on their upturned hull. The Brickwoods third victory in a row was not enough as Pynn and Cook finished the race and won the regatta.

The Larks are already planning for the 2022 Salcombe Gin Regatta which runs from the 7th to 12th August. Those not planning on taking their yacht to stay on are well advised to book their accommodation now!

Overall Results:

PosBoatSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1stRollergirl2520Harry PynnGemma CookWaldringfield Sailing Club111‑3227
2ndMowgli2528John BrickwoodVicky BrickwoodFrensham Pond SC Netley SC‑4231118
3rdFloozie2527Tim FellsBen MeekSalcombe YC33224(DNC)14
4thFlorence2492Chris Allen Ann AshworthHayling Island SC25463(DNC)20
5thThe Great Spud252Megan BrickwoodConnor DicksonNetley sailing Club64545(DNC)24
6thDylan2472Daniel WatsonTo ObtainedWaldringfield Sailing Club5665(DNC)DNC29

Related Articles

Waldringfield Centenary Cartoon Trophy
The Lark class continues to flourish at Waldringfield The Lark class continues to flourish at Waldringfield, following on from the Centenary Regatta held earlier in the year, a fleet of 16 Larks enjoyed a mixed bag of sailing conditions at Waldringfield Centenary Cartoon Trophy regatta over 11th & 12th Sept. Posted on 16 Sep
Larks look forward to Nationals in June 2022
Only one day's annual leave needed to compete at Pentewen Sands SC The Lark Class are excited and delighted to announce their 2022 Nationals will take place at Pentewen Sands Sailing Club, from Wed 1st June to Saturday 4th June 2022, over the Jubilee Bank Holiday/Half Term holiday. Posted on 21 Aug
Lymington Dinghy Regatta 2021
Over 100 dinghies sailed on 2 race courses The Lymington Dinghy Regatta, hosted jointly by the Lymington Town SC and Royal Lymington YC took place on the 3/4 July, proudly sponsored by local companies Harken UK and Nick Cox Chandlery. Posted on 8 Jul
Lark class at the Lymington Dinghy Regatta
Lucky to get entries in to this sold-out event Five larks were lucky enough to get entry to this sold-out event. The Larks were paired with the Seafly class on the West Course, sailing a starboard rounding trapezium course in a steady SE force 4. Posted on 6 Jul
Lark resurrection at Waldringfield
Racing complimented by training, crabbing, SUP, beach games, fancy dress... Thirteen Larks descended on Waldringfield Sailing Club to celebrate the club's 100 years of existence. This happened to be the largest turn-out of Larks at Waldringfield after some lean years. But the Larks are back! Posted on 29 Jun
Larks at Banbury
What a great experience to get back to sailing open meetings! What a great experience to get back to sailing open meetings and welcoming guests from across the UK! Banbury Sailing Club hosted the annual Midlands shift-fest and the racing was excellent. Posted on 28 Jun
The Lark class - a new perspective
Thoughts from Tim Fells after his first Lark Nationals in 24 years Twenty-four years ago, I hung up my Lark boots for what I thought would be the last time. I had enjoyed an incredible 20 years of Lark racing and socialising, beginning with my first experience of a National Championships as a Birmingham student. Posted on 22 Jun
Larks at Barnt Green
Prize-giving choices present a dilemma of huge proportions An excellent day of racing saw an impressive twelve Larks take to the water for the 2021 Lark open at Barnt Green SC and it was smiles all round! Posted on 17 Jun
Musto Lark Nationals at Rock overall
A challenging and fitful breeze on the final day The final day dawned to grey skies, some rain and a forecast of possible thunderstorms. Though they didn't materialise, they would probably have been a better option than the challenging conditions the fleet had to endure. Posted on 2 Jun
Musto Lark Nationals at Rock Day 3
Blessed with glorious sunshine and good breezes Day 3 of the Lark Nationals at Rock Sailing Club sponsored by Musto was blessed with glorious sunshine and good breezes. Posted on 1 Jun