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2022 DF95 Ash Trophy at Guildford Model Yacht Club

by Roger Stollery 20 May 06:16 BST 18 May 2022

This was another almost perfect day's racing at Abbey Meads Lake with a 5-9 mph southerly breeze blowing straight down the lake, ideal for DF95's A rig. 14 long two-lap races were sailed on a windward-leeward course that gave competitors a strategy as well as boat speed challenge with a constantly varying wind direction.

Despite the fact that some of the 16 competitors were amongst in the top DF sailors in the country, there were 6 different race winners and lot was learnt at the other end of the fleet at this friendly, yet competitive event, particularly when help was needed.

Following a comprehensive briefing by Race Officer, Roger Stollery there was a short wait for the breeze to fill in, as the lake was initially like a mirror. Skill and experience immediately showed itself in Race 1 with Ken Binks beating Dave Green and Barrie Martin into the podium places. Buzz Coleman, one of the originators of this class, then came to the top with wins in Race 2 & 3. Richard Calas from Emsworth then showed good pace to win the next 2 races, before allowing Barrie to win the final race before the lunch break.

Buzz and Dave were top of the lunchtime leaderboard with 14 points each with Ken close behind with 15 points.

Local Guildford club competitor, Martin Crysell then showed his skill to win Race 7, before letting Barrie, his sparring partner in Guildford's alternate Wednesday Summer Series, win Race 8. The wind at this time was shifting towards the south-east and Roger reset the course to provide a better angle and longer beat.

Experienced skipper Ken's strategy won him Races 9 and 11, his winning streak only interrupted by Buzz winning Race 10. Winning the next 3 races would be crucial to winning the event and they were both beaten by Richard who made a good start and led for most of Race 12. He was unable to follow up this win, as a battery failure put him out of action for the final two races. Dave had a bad race and had to discard a 6th in Race 13, which was won by Buzz, so keeping him in the lead. Dave then showed his skill and determination to win at least one race, by taking the final race from John Cleave, who suddenly found his form that had been missing earlier. This spoiled the results for Ken, not allowing him to take the trophy, which went to Buzz finishing one point behind him in 4th place.

At the prize-giving thanks were given to Roger and his support team of Judith and Janet for running another good event that everyone enjoyed. The club will be celebrating its 90th Anniversary & that of the Marblehead class on Saturday 28th of May with a special running of the annual Mermaid Trophy, GAMES 8.

Overall Results:

1st Buzz Coleman (Coalhouse Fort RYC) 32pts
2nd Dave Green (Huntingdon RYC) 37pts
3rd Ken Binks (Eastbourne MYC) 39pts
4th Barrie Martin (London MYC) 54pts
5th Paul Tickner (Guildford MYC) 60pts
6th Martin Crysell (Guildford MYC) 69pts

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