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Solution Open at Felpham Sailing Club

by Kathryn Clark 15 Jun 2023 07:08 BST 10-11 June 2023

We'd like to start this report by saying that Felpham SC welcomed the Solution fleet once again with wall-to-wall sunshine, perfect breeze and champagne sailing conditions. Unfortunately, the wind that they'd ordered was delivered late, only arriving in time for the last race.

Nevertheless, the club put on a fantastic open meeting and the final race was as good as it gets weather-wise, leaving everyone with smiles on their faces. Race officer Richard Bentley and his team did a sterling job to get 6 good races in given the challenging conditions. Even the local fishermen were supporting the Solution fleet, marking their lobster pots with a friendly Solution fish.

In terms of racing, Martin Tubb took a dominant lead and was virtually untouchable in the first two races. By race 3, newcomer to the fleet Richard Gibbon decided he'd had enough of being polite and decided to take a turn at the front instead. Behind Martin and Richard, the racing was very tight with places changing all over the place. Come Sunday morning, Richard once again took line honours making it 2 firsts apiece and the title to play for. In race 5, Kevin Clark, sporting a new flat-cut sail, decided he'd had enough of these lightweight leaders. After spotting a left-hand shift in the light and fluky breeze, he took the lead from Richard and Martin and managed to just sneak his way around the bottom mark before a major windshift turned the rest of the race into a procession. With Kevin Clark not just completing a race in light winds but actually winning it as well, the fleet started to worry that hell had finally frozen over.

There wasn't much time to worry though, as the major windshift foretold the arrival of the breeze and with all to play for in the final standings, the last race was completely different to the previous 5. Kevin once again took the win, which meant the top 3 each had two 1sts and a 2nd with four races to count. Richard's other result was another 2nd place, Martin was counting a 3rd and Kevin's next best result was 4th meaning they finished overall in that order.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st413Richard GibbonLee‑on‑Solent‑2‑211226
2nd456Martin TubbLeigh and Lowton112‑33‑47
3rd464Kevin ClarkLee‑on‑Solent‑54(DNF)2118
4th455Kathryn ClarkLee‑on‑Solent‑7334‑5515
5th469Mark FoxLee‑on‑Solent‑6‑5454316
6th405David CraddockThornry Island SC‑86(DNF)76625
7th431Tony LordFelpham SC4(DNS)(DNS)6DNCDNC28
8th439Ian KingFelpham SC3(DNS)(DNS)DNSDNCDNC30

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