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RS Sailing 2021 - LEADERBOARD

Hadron H2 Open at Deben Yacht Club

by Robin Parsons 4 Jul 2022 15:03 BST 2 July 2022
Dave Barker leading on the first reach during the Deben YC Hadron H2 Open © Paul Norris

The eight sailors who came to the starting area for Deben Yacht Club's Hadron H2 Open on Saturday 2nd July certainly knew they had a day of racing.

Four back-to-back races in a gruelling, gusty Force 5 meant there was little rest to be had as Race Officer Ben Alexander kept things moving and laid a well set triangle/sausage course in the wide open stretches of the River Deben. Each race was expertly co-ordinated to ensure all were completed as the tide turned and the competitors were able to then enjoy a long, planing run back to the clubhouse against the ebb.

2 of the initial 10 entrants thought better of the conditions and chose instead to take their cameras on to the safety boats resulting in some excellent shots of the action as the photogenic H2's skimmed around the course.

Paul Norris had only taken delivery of 155 a few days previously and it soon became obvious that it was a wise decision to keep his beautiful new boat in the dinghy park for another day. The conditions were certainly boisterous as the competitors set off in the first race. Dave Barker (148) and Tim Garvin (105) vied for contention at the first mark closely followed by Robin Parsons (135) and Andrew McGaw (145). Some confusion over mark positions meant abandonment and a re-start but as they set off again in similar order it became apparent there would be a pattern for the races to follow. These four swapped positions throughout the day for some incredibly close racing in conditions which set a huge store on boat handling and heavy weather technique - particularly through the gybes.

The first race resulted in a win for Dave. Robin, Andrew and Ian Little (102) followed not far behind but only after the unlucky Tim suffered a retirement as his halyard gave out while in second. Fortunately the other competitors were sent round for another lap which gave time for the safety boat to assist Tim in re-tying his halyard so he was ready to go again in the second race.

Dave showed the way again in the second race, sailing superbly both upwind and down with his technique and boat set-up looking great in the video action that was taken - with Tim breathing down his neck in similar fashion.

The third race had Robin leading the way around the first mark with Tim pushing hard and really working the reaches. Eventually Tim won out with Robin second, Dave third and Andrew fourth.

All now rested on the last race with Tim requiring a first to pip Dave for the overall win. While others were noticeably tiring Dave continued to make things look easy and carried a good lead as he came towards the final mark which required a gybe and short beat to the finish. Unsure whether the shortened course signal was coming or not Dave elected to gybe - just as a huge gust was about to hit. Dave capsized, leaving Tim to take the win and the Hadron Dinghies trophy for overall victory. It was unfortunate for Dave but Tim's consistency in the last 2 races paid off. Andrew followed in second with Robin in third and Ian in fourth - sufficient for Robin to pip Andrew for third overall.

Tea and cakes were served at the prize-giving where Tim, as winner, thanked the efforts of all who contributed to a fantastic day of racing and Robin thanked the visitors for making the worthwhile effort to attend the event. Dave continued smiling from the enjoyment of the day despite his bad luck in the final race and the fact he now had to track down a compatible charger in Suffolk for the long car journey back to the Midlands.

Overall Results:

1st105Tim GarvinQueen Mary SCDNF2114
2nd148Dave BarkerDraycote Water11355
3rd135Robin ParsonsDeben YC24237
4th146Andrew McGawGrafham Water SC33428
5th102Ian LittleThorpe Bay YC465413
6th137Tom AlexanderDeben YC576617
7th147Alan GrantDeben YC65DNFDNC19
8th119Matt GillinghamDeben YCDNFDNCDNCDNC29
9th106Laurence BakerDeben YCDNCDNCDNCDNC30
9th155Paul NorrisDeben YCDNCDNCDNCDNC30

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