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2021 Dragon Edinburgh Cup at the Royal Forth Yacht Club - Day 1

by Emma York 1 Sep 2021 07:13 BST 31 August - 3 September 2021
Dragon Edinburgh Cup at the Royal Forth Yacht Club day 1 © Emma York

Tuesday saw the start of the 2021 Edinburgh Cup, the 72nd edition of the British Dragon Nationals. This year's event is hosted by Granton Harbour's Royal Forth Yacht Club who previously held the Edinburgh Cup in 1997. Between 1964 and 1997 Royal Forth sailors won the Edinburgh Cup a memorable seven times.

Granton Harbour greeted the Dragon sailors with a gentle Easterly breeze on day one of the Edinburgh Cup 2021. Racing was unable to get under way on time as the wind had not filled in as predicted across the Firth of Forth and the morning was spent under AP.

A post-lunch increase in wind offered some optimism and soon the fleet was heading to the racing area for the start of race one.

All 16 Dragons sailed away from a clean start with GBR 761 Jerboa taking the clear air at the pin end of the start line to inch ahead of the fleet. The team of four, led by Gavia Wilkinson-Cox kept to the left of the course from the start as the fleet split going up the first beat.

Jerboa led around the first windward mark followed by GBR 810 Badger. While the wind remained light Jerboa continued her lead of the fleet and for the second time around the windward mark went through ahead of Badger, GBR 633 Fei-Lin's Flirtation, GBR 515 Basilisk and GBR 192 Bluebottle.

Just behind the leading Dragons the pack, starting with FRA 428 Bande a Part, GBR 731 Kestra, GBR 763 Bertie and GBR 764 Naiad made their way down the final spinnaker run.

The final downwind gate was an opportunity for several Dragons to make up ground before the hook to the finish. One such Dragon was Gery Trentesaux's four-up team onboard Bande a Part we sailed well to claim third overall.

On taking the race one win, Jerboa skipper Gavia commented "it is always good to win the first race."

Part of Gavia's four-person team is 18 year old, Royal Forth Yacht Club sailor, Kate Angier. Stepping in at the last minute to join the team, this is Kate's first Edinburgh Cup and the youngest sailor at the event. Talking excitedly after their win, she said "Sailing a Dragon is always something I have wanted to do, there are so many Dragons in the harbour and I have seen them sailing and racing and I have always wanted to get into it. This has been a really great opportunity and with such an experienced crew with Gavia I have learnt so much so quickly. I am absolutely loving it."

Race One Results:

1. GBR 761 Jerboa
2. GBR 810 Badger
3. FRA 428 Bande a Part
4. GBR 633 Fei-Lin's Flirtation
5. GBR 731 Kestra - 1st Corinthian Winner
6. GBR 192 Bluebottle
7. GBR 515 Basilisk
8. GBR 764 Najad
9. GBR 763 Bertie
10. GBR 818 Harry
11. GBR 402Meteor
12. GBR 790 Flotation
13. GBR 508 Kismet
14. GBR 489 Red Kestra
15. GBR 343 Wiz Too

16. GBR 509 Stargazer

Further racing was abandoned for the day. Day Two is scheduled for racing to start at 1055 on Wednesday 1st September 2021. Follow the BDA Facebook page for livestream race reports.

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