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Noble Marine 2020 - LEADERBOARD

2021 Gul Fireball UK National Championship at Hayling Island Sailing Club - Day 1

by UKFA 1 Oct 07:16 BST 30 September - 3 October 2021
Commodore's Reception on day 1 of the 2021 Gul Fireball UK Nationals © Derian Scott

Day 1 Sponsored by Gul and North Sails

As the boat park filled up and the measurement team scrutinised our boats, the clouds were moving faster & faster across the sky. With flags tugging on their poles, competitors were raising cups of tea instead of raising sails, and sampling the lunchtime menu.

Race Officer Charlie Bradshaw made the announcement shortly after noon that there was to be no racing today. With average windspeed over 30 knots over Chichester bar, there were no arguments from the competitors.

It's been a long time since we'd seen so many Fireball sailors together, with travellers from all over the UK, Ireland and the Czech Republic, so a few hours just chatting were truly appreciated.

At 5pm we scheduled an impromptu discussion forum, where we debated quick release trapeze harnesses, spinnaker pole systems, how we can get more people out to try a Fireball, and ideas for celebrating 60 years of Fireball next year. Even though there was no racing, we still had the day's prize-giving. This year, we've upgraded the hat and pieces of paper with a novel Python program to draw the day's winners. Rick and Lawrence won a Gul Evorobe each, and too many names to mention won a variety of goodies donated by North Sails, including jackets, holdalls, tops, T-shirts and caps.

We were then invited to Commodore, Andy Partington's, reception in the evening, with nibbles and bucks fizz.

Fridays's forecast looks encouraging and we hope to get three races in.

We're incredibly fortunate to have support from our main sponsor, Gul, and further prizes donated by North Sails, UKGlobal, Ropelocker and Hyde Sails.

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