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ILCA Thames Valley Grand Prix Series at Brent Reservoir

by Peter Dann & Nick Heenan 17 Oct 2021 06:46 BST 9-10 October 2021
Mark Greenstreet acknowledges the standing ovation that greeted his victory in the ILCA Thames Valley Grand Prix Series at Brent Reservoir © Marc Heritier

A total of 36 ILCAs participated in very light winds during a weekend of two open meetings hosted by Welsh Harp SC and Wembley SC on 9-10 October, giving a seven race regatta.

Early arrivals on Saturday were greeted by a glassy lake and zero wind, causing several to have a coffee and leave again. Yet by the scheduled start of the first race at 10h30, a Southerly wind had filled in to 3 knots, which turned out to provide the best sailing of the day. The Race Officer wisely set a short figure-of-eight course to allow for the forecast variable, and reduced strength of wind to come. Simon Hamment (Papercourt SC) led Race 1 from the start, yet the fleet remained closely packed throughout, with many highly competitive mark roundings. An hour later it was a totally different story, when a short but highly disruptive 180-degree wind shift hit the fleet whilst under the preparatory signal for Race 2, with the wind reverting to its original direction shortly before the start signal. Boats staying out of trouble on the start line managed to get away, and the subsequent ghosting wind conditions further strung-out the fleet, with smaller clumps of boats sailing a race within a race in very sparse and patchy wind conditions.

After an excellent curry lunch provided by Welsh Harp SC, Race 3 was once again sailed in patchy wind. This time it was local hero and "great-grand-master" Maurice Futerman who showed everyone else the way around the course, establishing an unassailable lead early in the race, with Simon Hamment hanging on for a 2nd place finish - his worst result of the day. Race 4 was simply horrible for all concerned, almost no wind but kept mercifully short by the Race Officer. Given the lack of paddles, constant "roll-tacking" was the only way for the surviving boats to get back to the shore.

The promise of more breeze encouraged 15 more boats to the Harp for Sunday's event hosted by Wembley Sailing Club. A shrewd short delay allowed a teasing little northerly to fill in, with occasionally as much as 8 knots making it as far as the lake. RO Colin Brockbank and his team of magicians managed to conjure 2-3 short beats per lap out of the width of the Harp, with the side benefit that students of 1950s dam architecture got plenty of opportunity to admire the concrete up close during the pre-starts. With such a tight first beat a good start was critical, as the first few boats tended to break away at the windward mark ahead of those enjoying a more companionable and sometimes conversational mark rounding: a pattern that was repeated throughout the day.

In Race One Wembley SC's Mark Greenstreet put his week's training in the wind and waves of Vassiliki to immediate use by ghosting through the throng to hit the line at speed. He, Roger Wilson (of both Harp clubs) and John Cant of Erith YC tacked right into more breeze and rounded the first mark with a decent lead over the rest of the fleet. These three remained close until the end of the second and final lap when the breeze died and the pack closed in. Greenstreet rounded the final windward mark in the lead but that Baldrick of the Harp Julian Bradley (WSC), in a move more cunning than etc etc, gybed off to the South shore where his usual private breeze was waiting to whisk him past six boats, finally and cruelly robbing Greenstreet and Wilson on the run to take the horn.

Race Two saw the first black flag after an inevitable recall with the wind oscillating as it filled in. On the first reach Paul Beard (WSC) pulled away from the leading group in which Wilson and Bradley were joined by Simon Hamment and Peter Dann (WSC). Beard showed his light wind pace to increase his lead throughout, while Wilson and Dann kept in the best of the pressure on the last leg to take second and third.

By the start of the final race there was a more consistent breeze, and once Mark Greenstreet had rounded the first mark first he was not to be denied a second time. Hamment had the measure of Dann to take second place. With neither Bradley nor Beard troubling the scorer the Wembley Open Trophy was Greenstreet's, with Wilson taking second and Bradley third. Simon Hamment's second was more than enough to crown him Victor Ludorum for the weekend ahead of Nick Heenan in second and Julian Bradley in third.

Overall Results:

PosHelmSail NoClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7Pts
1stSimon Hamment207509Papercourt1121‑11‑527
2ndNick Heenan69Wembley Sailing Club5433‑2014‑1829
3rdJulian Bradley130596Wembley Sailing Club3DNF(DNC)(DNC)14938
4thAndrew McLeish204719Fairlop Waters(DNC)54616‑191041
5thMicha Mayers200942WHSC2252(DNC)(DNC)DNC48
6thJohn Ayre179100London Corinthians10610718(DNC)(DNC)51
7thGareth Wilson186043WHSC48911‑22‑222254
8thLydia Evans177569WHSC6364(DNC)(DNC)DNC56
9thMuffin Green184015Wembley Sailing Club9111110‑1916‑1957
10thSophie Blanchard217833WHSC119121313‑18‑1458
11thMaurice Futerman156150WHSC8719(DNC)(DNC)DNC62
12thCaroline Brown193703WHSC141285‑25‑242463
13thYossi Shahar217832WHSC12DSQ78(DNC)(DNC)DNC85
14thPaul Beard174486Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC51787
15thMark Greenstreet209003Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC310188
16thPeter Dann205771Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC83388
17thHannah Burt166603Wembley Sailing Club7DNF(DNC)(DNC)24201789
18thRoger Wilson166571WHSC(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC221593
19thJoe Noun5WHSC15161412(DNC)(DNC)DNC94
20thJohn Curran215933Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC97696
21stJoza Cic211870Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC6812100
22ndJohn Cant120537Erith Yacht Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC4158101
23rdAlec Gass160554Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC10134101
24thMo Ali191851WHSC18DNFDNF(DNC)21‑2625101
25thColin Carver209002Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC12125103
26thGareth Jones196557Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC17913113
27thDaniel Stegmeier8Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC71716114
28thAkira Blackah196556Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC14621115
29thLenore Cannon162610Wembley Sailing Club1613(DNC)(DNC)2821DNC115
30thAlan Holloway209487Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC151120120
31stGerry Woodcock183185 191513(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC121
32ndMaciej Matyjaszczuk217832WHSC(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC23DSQ11136
33rdJohannes Menzel188422WHSC1710(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNC138
34thAilish HinchionBTYC7 1314(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNC138
35thMatt Barr205121WHSC(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC262323146
36thRICCARDO BINDI174116Wembley Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC2725DNC163
1stJohn Cant164918Erith Yacht Club1111(DNC)(DNC)DNC9
2ndMaddie Childs174459King George SC(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC11113
3rdMac Raymond212382Bough Beech Sailing Club(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC22216
4thAnne Fredborg207749Papercourt SC(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNC33319
1stAnita Nadkarni198827WHSC    2215
2ndRichard Eastmond143162 (blank)Wembley Sailing Club    11DNC6
3rdChristina Cannon(4.7 no num)Wembley Sailing Club    RETDNCDNC12

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