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Chase Sailing Club Sprint Championship 2023

by Dave Watkins 19 Oct 2023 09:41 BST 14-15 October 2023

29 club members signed on for the Chase Sprint Championship over the weekend of the 14th and 15th October at the Chase Sailing Club.

The race, now in its second year was scheduled for 20 races over the two days. The challenge for the RO and race team was could it be done?

The forecast for Saturday was for a steady F3 coming from the NW, The RO Chris Anderson had done his homework and set the course up the previous day, with some minor tweaking of the marks a trapezoid was set for the morning session.

Once the briefing was complete it was time to head out on the water for what looked like a fantastic days racing, although a little chilly the forecast had held so far.

The committee boat on station, the racing would be split into two fleets, fast and slow, split at PY1070. It was the slow fleet to get away first with everyone heeding the warnings by the RO that the U flag would be flying from the start. The fast fleet lined up next with the Chase Phantoms and others ready to get going. Everyone got away cleanly, and the championship was under way.

Just 1 Lap was set for the first race, however the wind had other ideas and increased to the top end of a F4 making for a short first race. Josh Hyland taking the first race win overall.

The laps increased to 2, and the course marks moved by the race team, the second race got under way. Some amazing conditions were enjoyed by the competitors, a true beat and some great reaches were enjoyed by everyone with close racing throughout the fleets. This time it was the GP of Rob Stringer and Peter Tate that took the win, followed by the GP of Neil Davies and Michelle Evans in 2nd, with Josh in third.

After everyone had calmed down in the committee boat, it was time to go again, with quick starts and hectic finishes it was truly a busy day for the race team.

With the wind increasing slightly the Championship was really getting going, everyone once again getting away without a hitch. After a poor start in the first two races it was time for Finlay Watson in his Laser to go for it showing some excellent speed to win the race, with Josh in 2nd and Elsa Minton, sailing the Laser Radial in third.

The course stayed true, and the fleets got away, the conditions getting testing, especially on the gybe mark, there was some excellent racing throughout the fleets, Sam Coxon in his new Phantom enjoying the conditions, Richard Instone in his new Solo also showing excellent pace.

These were really Fin's conditions, winning the race, followed by Josh, and Mark Blackham in his Blaze posting a third.

The last race of the session was a cracker for the fast boats, breeze was up and the sun was out! Josh and Sam having an excellent race, however it was Josh who got the win from Sam by 15 seconds, Fin showing great form with a third.

Everyone came in for a well-earned rest and some lunch whilst the race team re set the course for a windward/leeward course.

A second briefing was held, to let the competitors know that the course would be changed.

The racing got underway, the wind moderating, a relief for some. It was at this point that the wind gods decided to make the race teams life difficult. A 45 degree shift meant a one sided race, Richard Instone in his Solo making the most of the shift to win the first race, Rob Stringer and Peter Tate in the GP getting back on the score sheet in second, with Neil and Michelle getting a third.

The course reset and Chris Anderson our RO getting frustrated, once again the wind started to shift. Again another one sided race, but this time it was Fin who made the most of the shifts to take the win, followed by Adam Froggatt in the Grad, Rob and Peter in third in the GP.

Another reset of the course for race 8 and Chris finally got the even split that he was after when the fleets came through the Leeward marks. Niel and Michelle in the GP making the most of the angles downwind with some excellent spinnaker work to take the win, Alan Williams in his Solo having a great race to finish second, and Else in the Laser taking third.

A slight tweak to the course and we were off again, with lots of different winners and everyone getting plenty of start line practice someone was bound to test the RO, unfortunately for him, it was Fin Watson who found himself the wrong side of the line under U flag posting an OCS.

It was Rob and Peter in the GP who took first, followed by Richard in the Solo taking second, Elsa showing great consistency in third.

The final race of the day was under way, this time everyone kept well back although there was plenty of action, everyone in the slow fleet looking to get on the line for the gun, by this time the fast fleet were slightly depleted with only the diehards staying out. It was Fin who bounced back from his OCS to post yet another first, Josh keeping up the pressure taking second with Mark Blackham in his Blaze posting a third.

By this time the RO and race team could almost taste the first pint, everyone got packed away and into the club house to watch the first of the rugby matches. The galley served an excllent curry with all the trimmings, once again doing the club proud. The mini beer festival was in full swing with a packed clubhouse enjoying the entertainment.

The Commodore, Dave Watkins thanked everyone for the days sailing, the galley, the race team and announced that Fin had won the slow fleet on Saturday, Josh had won the fast fleet, both winning a very nice Chase towel and a bottle of wine each.

A great night was had by all, would everyone's legs work in the morning for part two?

The second day promised to be a great days sailing, if not a little colder, the forecast was for the wind to moderate and the sun to be out. It did not disappoint.

The RO, Chris Anderson was keen to get everyone off early as the plan was to get another 10 races in, with time to watch the England match in the clubhouse!

The first races of the morning were set for the windward/leeward course as per the previous afternoon, the trapezoid would be later in the day.

It was decided to start al the boats together rather than splitting the fleets, 16 boats lined up for the first race, the RO got everyone away.

Who would make the move to challenge Fin? With Josh still in bed it was Richard Instone who managed to just beat his wife Linda to take the first race win, Elsa managed an excellent second, with Linda in third.

It was now getting extremely competitive on the start line, the RO had warned everyone that U flag would be used again today. Nobody was eager to be in the RO's book and everyone stayed well back.

The race team decided to teak the course to get the racing down to a 10 minute sprint, which proved exciting to watch. The race could be won or lost on the beat, or positions gained on the downwind run.

It was Fin in his Laser who was spotting the pressure and shifts to pull out a big lead, taking the win, Eden Hyland posting his first result in a Kestrel, much to the race teams interest! "What's that boat?" Richard in his Solo getting a Third.

Still in the hunt for the Championship were Fin, Richard, Josh, Mark and Elsa. It was going to be an interesting afternoon session, however still two races left of the morning session. Once again everyone lined up and were on best behaviour, the constant teaks by the race team had been worth it, with an even beat/run. It was Mark Blackham who really pulled out a lead to cross the line first, but Richard in his Solo took the win on corrected time, Mark got the second with Fin doing enough for third. Linda took fourth after a super start, Elsa in fifth tied with Adam in the Grad, and Alison Hopkins had an excellent race to be the lead lightning finishing sixth, the ladies of Chase SC really taking to the sprint racing format!

Race 14 was another clean start, the wind started to shift a little, Richard really showed his experience getting the right side of the beat to take the win, Fin posting a second, Josh coming in third.

Race 15 started cleanly, The RO getting everyone away quickly as he wanted his lunch and Richard wanted to watch the rugby. This time it was Josh who got the win in his Phantom, Fin getting a good second, and Richard taking third.

Everyone took to the shore for some tea and lunch, the race team had a lie down in a dark room before getting ready for the last session, Trapezoid it was, the race team setting up the course.

Had Fin done enough, was the others going to match race him?

Fin Watson - 44pts
Richard Instone - 48pts
Josh Hyland - 54.5pts
Elsa Minton - 86.5pts

The RO had briefed everyone that the course would only be one lap, this made for a nice 10 minute race. As predicted, everyone lined up to maximise their position, Josh helping Mark move his racks away from his Phantom by giving them a gentle lift.

But Mark was not to be moved and got away to get round the course in style, enjoying the fast reaches in the Blaze to take the win, Elsa taking second, with Fin showing his consistency in third, tightening his grasp on the Commodore's Cup!

Another great result for the chase lady helms, Cath grove in her GP getting a fourth, Alison Hopkins in her Lightning getting fifth.

Another tweak of the course, Stuart Green on the race team commenting that he had moved more race marks this weekend than he had ever done in all the years he had been at the club. Super work by Stu and Dave Humphrey!

Their work paid off, another great course, everyone got away, some interesting pre-start moves by Richard taking across the fleet, was it the pressure getting to him?

Fin sniffing victory and sailed an excellent race to take the win, Linda taking second in her Solo, beating Richard, with Adam in the Grad taking third. Cath and Rob Slack once again getting fourth in the GP.

With the wind slightly increasing and the RO shortening the course race 18 was to be fast, however it was Adam in the Grad who took the win, excellently crewed by young Josh, followed by Josh Hyland in second, Elsa taking third in the Laser, Fin taking the fourth.

It was now that everyone decided to test the resolve of the RO and assistant RO, Everyone lined up in the breeze to get on the startline, Adam in the Graduate deciding to try to sneak through under the Enterprise of Anthony Morris, crewed by Margaret. Unfortunately for them they were spotted and given their OCS.

Fin wrapped up the championship with another win in the Laser, Richard taking the second place, with Mark in the Blaze taking third.

The final race got under way cleanly, the race team eager to get the marks away in anticipation for the rugby followed the fleet, nobody retired from the race, everyone continued the tight racing throughout the fleets Richard in the Solo getting the final win, Fin taking second, Josh in third, the top three battling hard as they had done so all weekend.

That was a wrap, everyone back to the clubhouse for more beer and rugby, at the prize-giving the Commadore and assistant RO, Dave Watkins thanked everyone for their participation in the event, the race team, the RO Chris Anderson, the Galley crew, Trish Blackham and Linda Instone for their hard work.

It was Fin Watson who took the overall win, and winning the slow fleet, Josh took 2nd place overall and the fast fleet, Richard Instone taking third overall.

Everyone agreed that the Sprint racing Championship is here to stay and that all had enjoyed the weekend immensely.

The Commodore said "What a fantastic weekend of sailing, enjoyed at all levels, what a truly superb club we are all part off!"

Overall Results:

PosFleetClassSail NoHelmCrewPYR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10R11R12R13R14R15R16R17R18R19R20Pts
1stSlowILCA 7 / Laser210288F Watson 1101‑94113615(OCS)141322314.51245.5
2ndFastPHANTOM1437J Hyland 100213221‑115472(DNC)48.531662.57368
3rdSlowSOLO6076R Instone 11426(DNC)6451462513113(DNC)992.5169.5
4thFastBLAZE774Mark Blackham 103321283(DNC)511‑1483.575244184.52.5797.5
5thSlowILCA 6 / Laser Radial210917E Minton 1150983‑1394833‑11275.5772102.565101
6thSlowGRADUATE2955A Froggatt 112014917(DNC)(DNC)92746565.566731OCS4150.5
7thSlowENTERPRISE23141A MorrisMargret1126‑18141514141410139109DGADGA11881110(OCS)12.5209.1
8thSlowLIGHTNING 368407B Westley 1160‑1715‑16151315131212121010.5121411914131310223.5
9thSlowSOLO5837L Instone 11421316.514(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC3849513212511310.5
10thSlowGP1413751Rob StringerPeter Tate11334145823818(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC356
11thSlowLIGHTNING 368334A Hopkins 1160191818(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC1212713145121499357
12thSlowGP1414246C GroveR Slack1133(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC6138.559447412.5385
13thFastFINN658Paul Lester 104937997799113.5(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC386.5
14thSlowGP1414048Neil DaviesMichelle Evans1133926743716(RET)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC396
15thFastRS 200967Graham Flynn 10461211111268610107(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC405
16thSlowSOLO5837A Williams 114211101211111312259(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC408
17thFastKESTREL16Eden HylandMary Duckham1038(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC821181214711815408
18thSlow200023A HopkinsKay1114201919(OCS)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC1415.517181818DNC1715DNC463.5
19thSlowILCA 7 / Laser161544M Rudd 110115.51313810121411(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC486.5
20thSlowLIGHTNING 368167Kirsten 1160(DNC)(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC1615.5161616151616DNC17494.5

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