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Heron Open at Bewl Sailing Association

by Amanda Conrad 10 May 2022 06:19 BST 7 May 2022

The single Bewl home boat was delighted to welcome eight visitors to its beautiful expanse of water, with competitors coming from as far afield as Norway, Wales and Yorkshire plus a contingent from Chipstead.

As mentioned by one of the visitors, the annual Bewl Heron Open provides extremes of weather and this year was no exception. The light wind was coming from all directions, but was predominantly north-easterly, so the Race Officer set a simple triangular course on the far side of the lake.

By the first start, the wind had dropped somewhat so competitors had quite a sedate three-lap race. In the light airs, Matt Pickett sailing single-handed took advantage of his large genoa to come second. Dave Butler and Emily Clixby with their red spinnaker led the fleet from start to finish, and the other boats with this extra sail confirmed its benefits.

The second race proved challenging when the wind completely died just after the start gun. Good concentration was required to avoid drifting back over the line. Then light rain brought a breeze which enabled boats to get round the course, though Jo Mayes and Amanda Conrad found to their cost that the reach was too fine to fly a spinnaker! It took over 40 minutes to sail a single lap, so the Race Officer shortened course to avoid further frustration. Dave and Emily took the gun.

When the wind backed, a change to a windward leeward course resulted in a perfect beat for the final race. This confused some competitors, and the visitors were not the only sailors to lasso the weather station near the new windward mark! The freshening wind led to a good race and, although Matt Pickett was first over the line, Dave and Emily beat him on handicap.

Competitors and the Race Management team all enjoyed a selection of home-made cakes and tea whilst Commodore Mark Munday presented the prizes. A big thank you to Race Officer Colin Nutt, his assistants and the shore team.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClub
110350Dave ButlerEmily ClixbyWelton Sailing Club
29812Matt PicketttUp River Yacht Club 
310343Jo MayesAmanda ConradBewl Sailing Association
410089James RussMaggie BoltonChipstead SC
52200Graham LongArmy Sailing Association 
69338Lesley DuttonSimon PrattChipstead SC
79400Ruth MurgatroydPeter Murgatroyd 
88428Nigel LambMaria LambChipstead SC
99341Sean ChapmanCarol MartinChipstead SC

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