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Rooster 2023 - Aquafleece Robe - LEADERBOARD

RS400 End of Seasons Regatta 2023 at Rutland Sailing Club

by Sam Knight 8 Nov 2023 14:08 GMT 4-5 November 2023
RS400 End of Seasons Regatta at Rutland © Natalie Smith

The final remnants of Storm Ciaran made a damp and chilly start for the 15 hard crews who battled through the downpours for the final RS400 Rooster National tour event of 2023. Rigging was optimised to allow maximum time in the clubhouse watching the late arrivals getting soaked while clutching a hot cup of tea to restore some feeling to cold hands.

Day one saw the breeze initially hovering around 12-15 knots before dying away through the day. A tight and shifty racecourse right on the shoreline made for close racing, with seconds proving the difference between a great race or a discard.

Finding the conditions rather too easy were series leaders Ollie Groves & Esther Parkhurst, taking a couple of bullets and a second to lead comfortably overnight.

Often sniffing around the lead, and snatching the final bullet of the day, was Dave Exley & Alistair Coates to sit in second with a gaggle of boats in close attendance behind. In with a shout of a podium finish at their first national event were Richard & Gemma Hanby proving that in the lighter conditions they could really mix it with the top crews.

An efficient turn around by the race team meant plenty of time for everyone to dry out before an evening at the local Wheatsheaf, once again very well attended and a definite highlight of any Rutland event.

Sunday dawned bright and dry, although those of us enjoying breakfast at the local Best Western were treated to an uninterrupted view of the white horses blowing down the race area. A hyperspeed reach with the kite down the startline confirmed the conditions were definitely 'fun', and those keen enough to think about such subjects as rake and rig tension were seen to be popping the pins another few holes down on the shroud plates.

The first race saw a monster course set up northerly leg of the reservoir, with only two laps possible in 40 minutes of racing. Once again Ollie & Ether were setting the pace, with a blinding last leg from Sam Knight & Chris Bownes popping them into second ahead of Dave & Alistair. With the bit between their teeth, Sam & Chris went on to take the remaining two bullets, with a second in the second race being enough for Ollie & Esther to take the overall event.

Getting their own back with a final leg move in the final race, Dave & Alistair took second by a single point from Sam & Chris, with the ever-consistent Tom Halhead & Paul Hilliar in fourth.

The final event win was the cherry on the cake for Ollie & Esther who had already wrapped up the overall series after a stellar year on the circuit. Sam & Chris had done enough to defend a close second place from Tom & Paul, closely followed by Hamish Gledhill & Ross Southwell and Sam Watson & Geoff Edwards in fourth and fifth.

112 boats took part in the national tour this year, with 63 attending more than one event, a fantastic achievement for a fleet approaching its 30th Anniversary.

Next year promises to be even better, with a special anniversary event at Hayling Island celebrating everything RS before in addition to the regular tour events. Planning is already under way for the fleets 30th National championships at Royal Torbay yc, if you have previously owned or are looking at an RS400 there isn't a better time to be getting into the fleet.

Finally, the tour couldn't continue to be so successful without the backing of its sponsors. Huge thanks must go to Rooster for sponsoring both the final event and the overall series, as well as many of the prizes right across the fleet.

See you next year!

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st1526Ollie GrovesEsther ParkhurstBeaver SC11212(DNC)7
2nd1460Dave ExleyAlistair CoatesLeigh & Lowton SC‑42133211
3rd1504Sam KnightChris BownesBartley SC3‑8521112
4th1535Tom HalheadPaul HilliarLlandegfedd SC23‑444316
5th1414Sam WatsonGeoff EdwardsBudworth sc56‑1295429
6th1510Richard HanbyGemma HanbyBeaver SC74311‑14934
7th1524Stu HalmanAnna WalshLeigh & Lowton SC9767‑10534
8th1492Martin PentyArchie BurtonBeaver SC658‑108835
9th1502Jon HeissigNicky GriffinLlangorse SC8‑9786635
10th1461Caroline ExleyHarvey LeighLeigh & Lowton SC1111‑13691047
11th1511Hamish GledhillRoss SouthwellWest Riding SC(DNC)DNCDNC57751
12th438Alastair RimmerEthan DawsonBassenthwaite SC12109‑13111153
13th1513Neil ParkhurstDave BorrettBeaver SC101210‑15121357
14th1435Matt SheahanEllie SheahanWarsash SC‑14141412131265
15th1376Tim Le CouilliardJames Le CouilliardKing George SC13131114(DNC)DNC67

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