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Hyde Sails 2022 One Design LEADERBOARD

HD Sails Scottish Solo Travellers at Newburgh Sailing Club

by Ross Watson 29 Jul 20:55 BST 23 July 2022
HD Sails Scottish Solo Travellers at Newburgh © Ross Watson, Carol Marshall & Patrick Burns

On July 23 the Scottish Solo fleet descended on Newburgh for the latest event in the HD Sail Scottish Travellers Series.

In contrast to our usual venues, Newburgh is situated on the banks of the river Tay and is very compact, the river only being a few hundred yards wide. The starting line is barely 30 yards from the slipway, handy for late arrivals such as Charlie Bracknell today. The course area is restricted by the channel and the leeward mark is so near the reeds that two Solos can just get round overlapped.

Your scribe arrived at 8.50 for the early 11.00 start time to find the gate locked and no-one else there, leading to a momentary panic until a club member arrived with a rescue boat. All was well and the bacon was soon being cooked on the grill by Roger Horner. As we rigged up the wind was from the East and looked pretty steady. It did not turn out that way! After the briefing Sam, race officer for the day, decided on the course starting with a beat downriver against the flooding tide. As we launched it was clear the wind had shifted to a more southerly direction and the course was quickly changed. In order to get a decent beat we were now starting and finishing on a run which was going to be interesting.

The favoured approach to the line taking account of the tide under us was to reach along the line on starboard to the outer limit as the gun went. Stuart Gibson got it spot on with Kevan Gibb next. Ross Watson was over early as was Dave Parkin. As the race progressed Keith Milroy came through to lead with Ross Watson up to second. Keith sailed away for a good win as the wind strengthened up the last beat. This, coupled with a shift to the east, brought Charlie Bracknell up to second and Nigel Orkney third.

Race 2 started promptly with a little more wind and a more easterly direction. It was now near high water and there was no tidal effect in this race. Stuart Gibson again got the start right and led down the run from Kevan Gibb and Ross Watson. These three were line ahead but behind them the fleet were several boats abreast at the leeward mark creating some excitement. Up the beat Ross sailed up the middle and took the lead with Kevan next. The breeze was a little stronger making planning just about possible on the tight reach. The first three places remained the same but it was close with only a few yards between them all the way round.

For race 3 the tide had turned although the effect was modest at the start. After the start sequence had begun Ross realised his tiller extension joint had failed and sailed ashore. Noticing that Simon Richards had done the same he asked to borrow his rudder only to be told his tiller extension had come adrift! It looked like no more racing but Roger Horner rushed to his car and returned with his own rudder which was hurriedly fitted and Ross re-launched only 30 seconds late for the start! Keith Milroy was the early leader at the leeward mark and extended this up the beat, helped by a few boats behind him over standing the mark. This brought Malcolm Worsley up to third behind Keith and Kevan. Keith was enjoying the conditions and had pulled out a big lead as he started the last run to the line. No sooner was he past the mark when the wind began to drop and the tide began to have more effect. His lead evaporated and he had several anxious moments before he just crossed the line ahead of Kevan Gibb. The majority of the fleet crossed the line within seconds of each other.

This meant that Keith Milroy was the clear winner of the HD Sails Solo Travellers followed by Kevan Gibb. There was a three way tie for third with Ross Watson taking the place ahead of Malcolm Worsley by winning the second race. With no delays on the water we were all packed up by 3.00pm after three good and eventful races. As always we were made very welcome by Newburgh SC and the Solo fleet enjoyed the conditions that river sailing brings.

At the prize-giving we finished with a deserved round of applause for Nigel Ford who, after sailing Solos all round Scotland since 1995 has decided to sell his boat and hang up his tiller. He has been a real stalwart of the fleet during this time and is the longest serving member. Always helpful, he recently arranged for his home club St Andrews Sailing Club to host the fleet at very short notice. We will no doubt see him on the beach there next time we visit!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1st5602Keith MilroySt Marys Loch SC1‑412
2nd6043Kevan GibbLargo Bay SC‑8224
3rd5841Ross WatsonEast Lothian YC61‑87
4th4975Charlie Bracknell 25‑67
5th5613Stuart GibsonCCC Bardowie‑4347
6th4502Malcolm WorsleyRoyal Tay YC5‑738
7th5889David ParkinASYC‑76511
8th6046Nigel OrkneyLargo Bay SC3‑11912
9th4657Brian CruickshankNewburgh Sailing Club‑98715
10th5289Simon RichardsNewburgh Sailing Club119(DNS)20
11th561Bruce BirrellLargo Bay SC10‑121020
12th5447Nigel FordSt Andrews SC‑12101121

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