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Noble Marine 2022 YY - LEADERBOARD

Noble Marine Lightning 368 Travellers Trophy Series 2022 at the Bala Easter Regatta

by Duncan Cheshire 21 Apr 18:49 BST 16-17 April 2022

Six Lightnings entered this round of the Noble Marine Travellers series but we lost Jeremy due to unforeseen circumstances before any boats were launched.

With three back to back races on Saturday and Sunday and good winds forecast it was going to be a tough weekend.

Starting in the mixed handicap fleet lining up with a Fireball and a Flying Dutchman was an interesting experience but race one all Lightnings got away cleanly. Duncan Cheshire was racing his new (to him) Mk 3 LN434 at the weekend and out to give Simon a hard time. Sure enough at the first windward mark it was these two making the break ahead of Ceri James from Shotwick in his Mk1 LN 86 and our chairman (who had forgotten to tie his toe straps in; his excuse for not sitting out) ahead of new Lighting sailor Rob Sloggett in LN117 who’s aim was to finish as many races as possible. Racing finished in this order and race 2 proved to be a rinse and repeat of race 1 with boats in the same order.

With the wind really getting up before the last race unfortunately Rob capsized and got stuck in the shallows. When he was finally upright, racing had started and he decided an early shower was in order. Out on the race course Simon pulled away in the breeze. Duncan capsized after tacking to clear wind at the leeward Mark and dropping the tiller. However he righted quickly and managed to get back ahead of Ceri and Bryan on the final lap for a finishing order that was the same as the previous races.

Sunday was a lot more unpredictable and in race 4 there were major wind shifts and major holes allowing Duncan to battle Simon hard right round the course. Duncan won the battle to the windward mark, but Simon managed to get ahead again on the downwind leg for another race win. Having tied his toe straps in for Sunday racing Bryan came home third ahead of Ceri whilst Rob decided to sit out the days sailing.

For race 5 the wind arrived straight down the lake and it was full hiking weather much to the dismay of the weary sailors. Simon and Duncan once again lead the charge but going hard left on the run Duncan found pressure and took the lead only to be baulked by a Solo going to the wrong mark, allowing Simon to get a better rounding and sneak ahead slightly. Nearing the top mark Duncan once again took the right side and round ahead only for Simon to sneak back on the run/reach to finish in that order whilst Ceri reasserted his authority over Bryan.

For the final race there were fewer boats finishing with Duncan sailing off to the wrong windward mark and deciding the showers were more appealing than another hard beat on lap two. Unfortunately Ceri’s Kicker decided it had enough leaving him to be towed home. This left Bryan to follow Simon home to score his best result of the series proving the old manta of always sail the last race of a regatta.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4F5R6Pts
1st428Simon HopkinsUp River YC11111‑15
2nd434Duncan CheshireWinsford Flash SC22222(DNF)10
3rd87Ceri JamesShotwick Lake SC33343(DNF)16
4th407Bryan WestleyAldridge SC4443‑4217
5th117Rob SloggettBala SC55DNCDNCDNC(DNC)31

Next round of the Noble Marine Insurance Travellers series moves to Up River YC on 14th-15th May where on Saturday Simon will impart some wisdom on going fast and winning races, then Sunday everyone gets to put it into practice.

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