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RYA Winter Match Racing Series 2022 Event 1 at Queen Mary Sailing Club

by Paula Irish 19 Jan 16:58 GMT 15-16 January 2022
RYA Winter Match Racing Series 2022 Event 1 © RYA

The first event in the RYA Winter Match Racing Series saw James Pinder and his team mastering the challenging light wind conditions and the competition to take the win.

The Winter Match Racing 1 event over the weekend (15-16 January 2022) saw nine teams battling it out in RS21s at London's Queen Mary Sailing Club, which saw a full round robin completed despite a frequent lack of breeze, 30 degree wind shifts and thick fog.

Pinder and his team of Jem Lawson, Jamie Webb, Arthur Henderson and George Hopes won overall from Ted Blowers, who was racing with Fraser Woodley, Bobby Hewitt and Robby Boyd.

The top two teams finished on equal points - both having won seven from their eight matches - but Pinder claimed event victory having won in the match against Blowers. A close third overall was James Morson and his team of Harry Frith, Ben Webb and Brendan Lynch, who won six of their eight matches.

Day one saw very light winds and a postponement of proceedings until around 13:00. A third attempt at starting the first flight was successful only to then see the wind die completely after only three races.

The Sunday then started as advertised with the first flight away at 08:30 and the wind held for an entire round robin to be completed despite the very shifty conditions and a couple of flights having to be canned after starting due to 30 degree wind shifts and thick fog, which also meant that the course had to be moved closer to the shore.

Olympian and four-time match racing world champion Annie Lush was on hand throughout the weekend as the event coach and competitors made the most of the opportunity ask lots of questions to develop their skills.

The full results from the event can be found here and the #rockupandrace series now continues with entry open for:

  • 12-13 March 2022 - Winter Match Racing 2, 707s at Royal Corinthian YC, Burnham-on-Crouch
  • 19-20 March 2022 - Winter Match Racing 3, RS21s at Ullswater YC
  • 26-27 March 2022 - Women's Winter Match Racing, Elliott 6ms, WPNSA

Richard Moxey, RYA Keelboat Development Manager, said: "We had no more than 8 knots of wind the entire weekend and although we had to call it a day on the Saturday after only three matches, an incredibly early start for everyone on the Sunday ensured the Race Committee managed to finish the entire round robin and a great day was had by all. Despite the challenging conditions it was a good start to the series.

"Congratulations to James and his team, but I'd also like to give a special mention to the team which came in last, who sailed well, and managed to win one of their races at their first ever match racing event! This team included British Keelboat Academy sailors so it was great to see them taking part."

At the prize-giving, winning helm James Pinder (pictured above with team) thanked the umpires and the race committee for managing to run a successful and hugely enjoyable event despite the difficult wind conditions.

RYA Match Racing provides an accessible platform for young and aspiring keelboat sailors, and dinghy racers wanting to transition to keelboats or try something different, with each event having coaching support and a fleet of one-design keelboats ready and waiting at each venue.

Find out more about RYA Match Racing and all of the events scheduled for this year's Winter Match Racing Series, including NOR and entry, at www.ryamatchracing.co.uk.

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