Please select your home edition
Edition
A+T Instruments 2024 Leaderboard

Comet Open Meeting at Shustoke Sailing Club

by Dave Turtle 21 Jul 2023 15:10 BST 16 July 2023

Shustoke Sailing club hosted its first ever Comet Open on Sunday 16th July. There was some doubt, in the days leading up to the event, whether or not the meeting would take place due to the forecast of high winds and thunderstorms. However, the decision to go ahead was agreed and turned out to be correct with the wind having moderated overnight to a pleasant force 3-4 blowing straight down the 100+ acre reservoir. It was going to be a good sailing day!

The club is located close to Coleshill in the West Midlands with excellent motorway links and attracted ten visiting boats from across the country. There were representatives from Baltic Wharf, Beer, Burghfield, Merthyr Tydfil, Ogston, Staunton Harold and Winsford Flash. Also, we were honoured by a surprise visit of the Comet designer and builder, Andy Simmons.

The Comet event was run successfully alongside normal club sailing using the same course with a five-minute interval between starts. There were two back-to-back races before lunch followed by a third race in the afternoon. The race team set some excellent courses making full use of the lake; there were no general recalls and on the few occasions where penalty turns were required, these were done without a fuss so often evident in some other classes!

The first lap of the first race saw several different leaders with close racing throughout the fleet as sailors became accustomed to the conditions. There were many place changes on both the upwind and downwind legs but on the second lap Eddie Pope (Ogston) was out in front and maintained that position to take first race honours. After many place changes, Chris Robinson (Burghfield) claimed second place and Dave Turtle (Shustoke) third. A sudden squall towards the end of the race swept through the fleet but everybody survived the gybe. However, nobody could escape the torrential rain which, thankfully, didn't last too long.

At the start of the second race there was a slight shift in wind direction giving port bias to the start line and the home boats took full advantage. Cole Briscoe led at the first mark from Dave with the rest of the fleet closely bunched behind. As the race progressed Eddie worked his way through to challenge for second place but was held off after a close tussle all the way to the finish. Meanwhile Cole had established a comfortable lead to take first place.

There was then a well-earned break while competitors and supporters enjoyed various baked potatoes and plenty of cakes provided by Dav and the team. There was another downpour during lunch which resulted in a short delay to allow the storm to pass.

A change of course for the final race added to the growing excitement with any of four boats able to win the event at this stage. However, at the first mark it was Ben Palmer (Baltic Wharf) setting the pace and went on to extend his lead throughout the race. Eddie and Chris had a long battle for second which left Chris in a wind-shadow allowing Cole and Dave to slip past on the last lap.

So, three races with three different winners but, after the number crunching, Eddie was a clear winner on three points with the next three boats all on five points. Ben claimed second place by virtue of his win in the last race and Cole third by winning the second race.

The day was concluded by prize-giving and a very welcome afternoon tea to sustain the visitors on their way home. Thanks went to the race team, safety crew and galley without whom these events just wouldn't take place. In conclusion, a successful event providing enjoyable and exciting racing from both on and off the water.

Overall Results:

PosRigSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3Pts
1stXw377Eddie PopeOgston SC1‑323
2ndStd597Ben PalmerBaltic Wharf SC‑4415
3rdXw840Cole BriscoeShustoke SC‑5145
4thXw815Dave TurtleShustoke SC‑3235
5thStd867Chris RobinsonBurghfield SC2‑557
6thXw698Nigel WilkinsShustoke SC6‑9713
7thXw694Alun BevanMerthyr Tydfil SC‑98614
8thXw311Steve BellamyWinsford Flash SC77‑1014
9thXw845Nigel FernStaunton Harold SC‑106915
10thXw705Martin LoudWinsford Flash SC‑1210818
11thXw864Peter MountfordStaunton Harold SC8(DNC)1119
12thMino852Zara FranktonShustoke SC11(RET)DNC25
13thXw800Henry JaggersBeer SC(DNC)DNCDNC28

Related Articles

Border Counties Midweek Sailing concludes
Final event at Winsford Flash sees Pete Coop win overall Border counties midweek sailing has now completed the 2023 series and what a great series it has been without a fantastic turnout throughout, with 84 individual entries (15 of which were double handed boats). Posted on 19 Oct 2023
Staunton Harold Comet Open
Good to see other visitors from South Wales, Reading, Bristol and Devon The final Comet Open of the year was held on a sunny, chilly day with good westerly wind forecast. It was a joint event with 7 Solos. As well as Midland based helms, it was good to see other visitors from South Wales, Reading, Bristol and Devon. Posted on 16 Oct 2023
Border Counties Midweek Sailing at Winsford Flash
Pete Coop wins the event, and so the series overall Winsford Flash Sailing Club hosted the final round of the 2023 Borders Counties Series. 24 boats(27 sailors) entered with a healthy mix of dinghies including - Comet, Streaker, Miracle, Solo, Supernova, RS100, Laser, Topper and British Moth. Posted on 10 Oct 2023
Comet Nationals 2023 at Ogston
Set in the beautiful Amber Valley in Derbyshire Ogston provided the perfect venue for the 2023 Nationals. Set in the beautiful Amber Valley in Derbyshire. 35 boats entered with a strong competitive fleet featuring 5 previous National Champion winners! Posted on 6 Oct 2023
Merthyr Tydfil Comet Open
Slow motion "nip and tuck" racing The forecast was for very light winds turning from the north to the south with bright conditions. When I arrived at the club, there was near zero wind in places on the reservoir. I wasn't too worried as we had over three hours until racing. Posted on 7 Sep 2023
Border Counties midweek sailing at Llyn Brenig
380m above sea level makes it the highest sailing club in Wales The Border Counties Midweek Travellers series sailed at a venue new to them on Tuesday 25th July - Llyn Brenig, on the border of Conwy and Denbighshire. Llyn Brenig Sailing Club is based on a 900 acre reservoir, almost 380m above sea level Posted on 31 Jul 2023
Border Counties midweek sailing at Chester
When the weather is fine then you know it's a sign for messing about on the river The third round of the very successful Border Counties Midweek Sailing series was held on Tuesday the 6th June on the river at Chester. There were seventeen boats of all shapes and sizes ranging from a Topper to an RS100. Posted on 21 Jun 2023
Silver Wing Comet Open
The wind however, had decided to be sneaky... Saturday 17th June saw Silver Wing SC hold its second Comet open meeting. We welcomed fourteen competitors from as far away as Ogston SC (Derbyshire), Baltic Wharf (Bristol Docks) and Beer SC. Posted on 19 Jun 2023
Comets at Burghfield
Light steady winds for the 15 sailors Fifteen Comet sailors arrived at Burghfield Sailing Club for the Comet Open on Saturday 22nd April to find a becalmed reservoir with mist on the water. Race Officer James Anderson postponed the start until after an early lunch. Posted on 23 Apr 2023
What was intriguing at the RYA Dinghy Show 2023?
Remote operated self-bailers set one man's heart a flutter Determined not to let moving house (the day before) put him off, YachtsandYachting.com's website developer, Magnus Smith, attended his favourite boat show during the last weekend in February. Posted on 6 Mar 2023