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Bala Catamaran Open 2023

by Mike Allen 12 May 06:06 BST 6-7 May 2023

Bala Sailing Club's annual catamaran open welcomed eleven boats, a slightly smaller entry than normal, not helped by a date clash with a King and a very light wind forecast on Saturday. Despite this, competitors travelled from Cumbria, Yorkshire and London. Hugh Davies and Cheri Johnson won the furthest travelled, some two hundred and fifty miles from Stokes Bay SC.

At the briefing the PRO detailed his optimistic plans to run three races in the shifty south easterly wind which was blowing over the club. This was the right decision as a gentle force two greeted competitors as they headed out to the race course. Sailing an F18, Paul and Jude Allen from Bassenthwaite SC won all three races in the mixed handicap fleet of eleven catamarans.

Overnight, locals John Tuckwell and Mike Cleaver, sailing a Hurricane SX, held second overall counting five points. Charles Watson and Wayne Crompton, sailing a Spitfire from Yorkshire Dales SC, held third overnight counting six points. The breeze slowly faded as the day progressed with the last race just finishing before it shut off completely. Competitors and members enjoyed a BBQ on the patio after racing, with the clouds parting and the sun making a welcomed appearance just in time.

Day two looked entirely different, with the favourable south westerly forecast fully bedded in at 9am. Competitors enjoyed full trapezing conditions throughout the day, on a 1 mile windward leeward course with an upwind gate used to accommodate the varied speed of the different classes. Continuing the previous days form, Paul and Jude won races four and five to claim first overall.

The real excitement was in the race for second and third, which looked close between Pete Jones and Fraser McMillan, sailing an F18 from Tresaith Mariners SC and John Tuckwell and Mike Cleaver, sailing a Hurricane SX from Bala. Pete and Fraser sailed a solid second day, counting a 3rd, 2nd and a 1st but unfortunately this wasn't enough to make up for an average first day. John and Mike claimed second overall by two points.

Next up is the legendary Bala Long Distance on 17/18 June. Full details here.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoClassSCHRSHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st1825NACRA F18 CATAMARAN1Paul AllenJude AllenBassenthwaite SC11111(DNC)5
2nd500HURRICANE 5.9 SX CATAMARAN13John TuckwellMike CleaverBala SC‑43234416
3rd957NACRA F18 CATAMARAN1Pete JonesFraser McMillanTresaith Mariners SC57‑823118
4th1100UNICORN CATAMARAN1.197Richard Bette Queensmead SC‑62555219
5th1588NACRA F18 CATAMARAN1Liz HowellMike HowellTresaith Mariners SC8(DNC)342320
6th227SPITFIRE CATAMARAN147Charles Watsonwayne CromptonYorkshire Dales SC24‑777626
7th47AA CLASSIC CATAMARAN (STRAIGHT / CONSTANT126Steve Tellwright Bala SC36468(DNC)27
8th106206HOBIE 161.218Hugh DaviesCheri JohnsonStokes Bay756(DNC)6529
9th2123DART 16 CATAMARAN1.324Andrew BovingtonDave AnsellBala SC(DNF)DNCDNC99749
10th2049DART 16 CATAMARAN1.324?????????????  (DNC)DNCDNC810850

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