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Noble Marine Streaker National Championship at Staunton Harold Sailing Club - Overall

by Neil Firth 6 Oct 2021 13:08 BST 2-3 October 2021

Staunton Harold served up the two key ingredients of a memorable Championship on the second and final day of the 2021 Noble Marine Streaker Nationals - sunshine and wind! With two races scheduled and only one point separating the top three sailors after day one, there was still everything to play for at the top of the fleet.

The first race of the day (race 4 of the Championship) saw southerly winds of 15 - 20 knots, allowing the Race Officer to set an ideal course with the start line immediately off the clubhouse and a beat up the length of the reservoir. With the pin end of the line heavily favoured, it was no great surprise to see an over-eager fleet brought back for a general recall.

The black flag was then in place as the fleet once again transgressed, with three boats sent ashore to sit this one out. The race got away at the third time of asking and it was Tom Gillard (Sheffield Viking) who set the early pace, leading Steve Blackburn (Leigh & Lowton / WLYC) at the windward mark.

As the race progressed, Tom stretched his lead while Martin Penty (Beaver) fought his way back from a challenging first lap to eventually reel in Steve and take second. While these three leaders from the first day were consolidating their podium chances, there was a tight battle for fourth between James Sinclair (East Lothian), Pete Gray (Staunton Harold) and Duncan McDonald (Newhaven & Seaford), eventually finishing in that order.

This left Tom and Martin on equal points going into the final race, although Tom was counting a higher potential discard. Martin, on the other hand, needed a boat between himself and Tom to hold on to his 2019 title.

Race 5 got away first time in similar winds but with some hefty gusts topping 25 knots at times. All but the very best sailors were left hoping to get their gybes in at a quieter moment! The leeward mark, just off the clubhouse, was often the windiest point of the course, providing some entertaining capsizes for those ashore and plenty for the rescue crews to keep an eye on.

Only 12 boats finished the race, but with all the top guys remaining to show how it should be done. Tom Gillard provided a masterclass in the conditions, sailing away from the fleet to secure the Championship. Martin Penty finished second, holding off James Sinclair who took third with his best performance of the regatta, despite a spectacular capsize on his last gybe.

So, after the 'blip' of 2019, Tom Gillard reasserted his standing in the Streaker Class, winning his ninth National title. Defending champion Martin Penty took second overall and Steve Blackburn, third. Local sailor Pete Gray narrowly missed the podium, taking fourth at his first Streaker Championships.

Pete, along with Nigel Pepperdine and Alan Bennett, also secured the The Altogether Shield for Staunton Harold Sailing Club (top three from the same club). Elsewhere in the fleet, Peter Matthews (Waveney & Oulton Broad) took the Silver Fleet trophy coming twelfth overall, which was also enough to win the 'Tune it Up' trophy for the most improved sailor since the last Nationals.

The Cadzow Trophy for the best presented boat went to Chris Kelly's 'Baloo' (1549); Chris, from Snettisham Beach, is both new to the class and to sailing.

2021 will be remembered for many things, but for the Streaker Class it will be the year that Staunton Harold Sailing Club generously invited the Class back in October, having lost their July Nationals to zero wind. And what a great Championship it finally turned out to be! Thank you to all their volunteers, ashore and afloat, for a thoroughly well run and enjoyable event.

Next year, we head to old Streaker favourite Filey Sailing Club for our 2022 Nationals. Will Tom Gillard be able to match his dad's ten Streaker National titles or will the other Yorkshireman Martin Penty once again have his day... or will someone else spoil their party?! Save the date, 24-26 June 2022, and we'll see you all there!

Overall Results:
If you finished in the top ten at the Streaker nationals then enter your Gear Guide information here

PosFleetSail NoBoat nameHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1stGold2111Single Use PlasticTom GillardSheffield Viking11‑6114
2ndGold1982 Martin PentyBeaver‑421227
3rdGold1942TyphoonSteve BlackburnLeigh & Lowton2‑423411
4thGold2100 Peter GraySHSC‑5345517
5th 1973 James SinclairEast Lothian6‑774320
6thGold2102ChopsDuncan McDonaldNewhaven & Seaford7‑1436925
7thGold1922 Philip PriestleyYorkshire Dales8‑1297630
8thGold2136 Nigel PepperdineSHSC11958(DNF)33
9thGold2106 Ian PriestRipon98‑1110734
10thGold1977White SatinNeil FirthBanbury101013(BFD)1043
11thGold1616 Giles Therkelson‑SmithWelton(DNF)16129845
12th 1654SkippyPeter MatthewsWOBYC12111414(DNC)51
13thGold2126BadgerGraham SextonFishers Green36DNF(BFD)DNC54
14th 2124 Michael AlexanderRutland14‑1917121154
15th 1569 Richard BrameldWelton‑17151511DNF57
16thGold1972 Veronica FalatWOBYC(DNF)58DNCDNC59
17th 1783RaptorAlan BennettSHSC131310(DNC)DNC59
18th 2132 Chris SmithIsland Barn16‑171613DNF61
19th 1585 Richard TannerNottingham151818(BFD)1263
20th 1549BalooChristopher KellySnettisham Beach182119DNF(DNC)77
21st 1951Dynamite SpecialAngus BeytsNewburgh(DNF)20DNFDNCDNC88
22nd 1384 Matilda HarrisonOgston(DNF)DNCDNCDNCDNC92

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