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EAORA & DXB Pumps Ralph Herring & Pattinson Cup 2023

by Paul Wood 13 May 2023 05:36 BST 7-8 May 2023
EAORA Ralph Herring & Pattinson Cup © Andy Wise

It was an 8am start for the competitors with the line just off the Nass Beacon at West Mersea.

The yachts representing their clubs came from Haven Ports, Royal Harwich, Pin Mill, Royal Burnham and West Mersea. It was a delight to see four yachts from the Royal Burnham Yacht Club, Cobra a Beneteau 34.7, Slipstream a Corby 25 and the Galloway family onboard Titian an Elan 40 who have returned to EAORA after a few years away. It was great to see Jon McColl from the Royal Burnham YC with his trimaran Shockwave racing for the first time with EAORA, this hopefully is the first of many Trimarans racing under MOCRA to join us, our racing rules have been amended to accommodate the MOCRA fleet this season. Shockwave is familiar to Offshore racing with an Atlantic crossing in 2005.

The race was slow to start with a gentle breeze taking the yachts out towards the Spitway with a course around west of the Gunfleet sands, then it took the yachts through the Spitway whilst there was enough water for everyone. The finish was at the entrance of the river Crouch. The tides were not favourable with a foul tide most of the race and with the light winds the race committee decided to shorten course to give everyone enough time to motor to Burnham. Unfortunately, there was a slight breakdown in communication from the race team during the shortening of the course, but it was mutually agreed by all the competitors to run with a set of results generated by the race committee.

This made a first for Lizzie Brown on Slip Stream, second for Phill Collard on Cobra and a third for Pelham Etherington on Magic Moments a Sigma 33.

The Royal Burnham Yacht Club had an array of silverware to distribute amongst the fleet. It was the second time for Lizzie Brown to win the RBYC Cecil Gatti Trophy being the first RBYC yacht on corrected time.

60 sailors enjoyed a night in the Royal Burnham yacht Club with a lovely meal and complimentary wine from EAORA to kick start the offshore season.

On Monday morning Andy Wise, our principal race Officer onboard "Jane" his classic Fairey Huntsman started the return race at 8 am from the Branklet Buoy to Mersea for the Pattinson Cup. There was a bit more breeze and it wasn't long before the race committee was on station at 1300 hrs at Mersea ready to finish Shockwave the MOCRA Tri, who was fast approaching at 12 knots + and a favourable tide.

It was delightful to see Michael & Jason Wheeler with their Classic Sparkman & Stephens Golden Fleece win the Pattinson Cup overall with Slipstream Lizzie Brown on their heels only six minutes away on corrected time. Third was Paul Scott with his Sigma 38 Spirit.

A Big thank you goes out to our two member clubs, West Mersea Yacht Club & Royal Burnham Yacht Club for organising the two races and the skippers for missing the tail end of the Coronation to bring their yachts to the starting area at Mersea.

12 EAORA boats have already entered the RORC North Sea Race on 19th May from Harwich to Scheveningen. The overall EAORA winner will be awarded the prestigious Charlie Mills Cup.

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