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Jersey Electricity Gorey Regatta

by Philip Jeune 4 Jun 2023 06:50 BST 27-28 May 2023
The cruisers set off in a fresh breeze during the Jersey Electricity Gorey Regatta © Simon Ropert

Perfect conditions made for a highly successful Jersey Electricity Gorey Regatta - the 166th edition of this historic event.

Sunshine and a steady north-easterly Force 3-4 breeze throughout the two days of racing enabled regatta director Bill Harris and his starting team to complete a busy schedule of races for cruisers, dayboats, dinghies and windsurfers.

Other regattas may be bigger but racing beneath the ramparts of the 13th century Mont Orgueil Castle in the beautiful setting of the Royal Bay of Grouville holds a special attraction for sailors of all ages. This year was no exception with the trophy winners including 12-year-old Henry Edwards in his Optimist dinghy Funky Monkey and 83-year-old Peter Carnegie in his dayboat Pod.

The event also attracted national television coverage with a film crew covering the racing for Channel 5 with a camera and drone aboard one of the competing cruisers, Mystique of St Helier, sailed by Deborah Hutchings and Chris Fritot. Their shots will hopefully be included in a documentary on the Channel Islands.

In the cruiser races the main honours were shared by four yachts - Bandit (Ben Rogers), which won three cups, and Abracadabra (Nick O'Hare), Jackrabbit (Robin Jenkins) and Super Q (Team Super Q) who each took home two.

In the dayboats - the 'red sails' class - Antony Gibb's Petrina came top in Saturday's three races with Peter Carnegie's Pod taking the honours on Sunday.

In the dinghies Laser sailor James Tilley won three trophies while Jamie Washington (Topper) and Olliver Boyle (Laser) gained two apiece.

New sponsors Jersey Electricity were represented by head of operations Mark Preece who said that the company were delighted to be able to 'come on board' such an historic event, especially one that was considerable older than JE which will celebrate its centenary next year. Staff members from JE were able to go out on a RIB to see the racing action at close quarters and also give out memorabilia to the younger sailors launching their dinghies from the beach.

The 19 trophies were presented by Mr Preece at the Sunday evening prize-giving held at the Ranch in Gorey Village, where Gorey Regatta Association captain Justin Horton expressed his delight at the success of the 166th event and also the new partnership with JE.

Mr Horton concluded the formalities by announcing that 13-year-old Heath Senior, competing in his first Gorey Regatta, had been awarded the Morning Cloud Trophy, a special award given at the discretion of the GRA captain. In his first race Heath's Pico dinghy had sprung a leak that filled the boat with water. Undeterred he came ashore, went round to St Catherine, collected another Pico and returned to Gorey to compete in the remaining races, perfectly illustrating the enthusiasm that makes the oldest sailing event in the Channel Islands so successful.

Overall Results:

Abracadabra (Nick O'Hare) De Faye Memorial Trophy & Glendewar Challenge Cup
Jackrabbit (Robin Jenkins) Richardson Trophy & Commodore's Cup
Super Q (Team Super Q) Le Riche Challenge Cup & Stevens Centenary Challenge Cup
Bandit (Ben Rogers) Betty Bruce Challenge Cup, Fairey Cup & Austin Potter Cup
Giselle (Myles Winchester) 150th Regatta Trophy
Foxhound (Don Thompson) Yangtze Cup

Petrina (Antony Gibb) Orviss Challenge Cup
Pod (Peter Carnegie) Frank Jeune Trophy

Jamie Washington (Topper) Fifth Gorey Cup & Rosel Bowl
James Tilley (Laser) Assinder Cup, Norman Challenge Cup & Perchard Memorial Cup
Henry Edwards (Optimist) Ecrehos Trophy
Olliver Boyle (Laser) Gorey Cup-George Thomas Labey & Fourth Gorey Cup
Paula Boyle (RS Aero 7) Marmotier Trophy
Florian Therese (Windsurfer) Windsurfer Overall, Windsurfer Saturday & Windsurfer Sunday

Fast Cats
Adrian Jesson (Hobie Wildcat) Fast Cats Trophy

Muscatelle (Jack Horton) Horton Trophy

Morning Cloud Trophy
Heath Senior (Pico)