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Frensham Pond Sailing Club Saturday Pursuit Winter Series

by Megan Pascoe 31 Mar 11:16 BST
The top 4 in the Winter series – Jeremy Hudson, Clive Eplett, Megan Pascoe, Kate Hedley © Frensham Pond Sailing Club

We made it to the end of the winter Saturday series at Frensham which started in November. 20 races (we missed one due to ice), 150 boats, 107 different helms, average of 28 boats in a race, 3 races with over 45 boats entered.

28 different classes participated including 25 RS200s, 13 ILCA 7s, 17 ILCA 6s, 26 Cadets and 12 Solos. 30 boats did 8 or more races so qualified for the series. Yes it is a small bit of water but we can fit a lot in.

Easter Saturday was the last race of the series and we were all a little pessimistic over the forecast. Although it was southerly (not one of our better directions) there was a nice 8 knots and it was sunny and warm. We race for the Spring Challenge Trophy on Easter Saturday so more into the bargain than just the series scores and bragging rights. John Brickwood and Andy Hicks in the Lark took home the trophy with Jeremy Hudson in the K1 in second. Thanks to Megan Brickwood also for coming and coaching the Cadets.

The series was won by Megan Pascoe in the 2.4mR. A light wind winter definitely helped and being out in front of the pack at the start of the pursuit race is an advantage. It is totally different to Handicap racing where you are stuck in amongst the other boats. The rest of the podium was undecided until today. Clive Eplett (RS 100) was doing his safety boat duty so left it up to Jeremy to make his move. 5 points separated them going into the final race and because Jeremy was counting averages for competing away it was difficult to do the maths. Jez did a good job but ultimately 2nd today wasn't quite good enough and he lost to Clive by 0.3 of a point. Kate Hedley (2.4mR) has been a little in no mans land for the last couple of months not being able to catch those in front but each week staying in front of those behind. Winter isn't normally Kate's forte with the wind and cold so it was great to see her in the prizes. The battle for 5th and 6th was tight between the Phantoms of Richard Moore and Simon Bond. Richard got Simon in the ending the series with a 3rd and 4th. Simon never quite managing to get rid of his early teens result that he was having to count.

4 out of the next 5 boats were Solos with John Brooker taking first Solo. Will Stratton-Brown and Will Ahlheid (RS Feva) were first double handed in 10th. Really looking forward to see what they can achieve alongside Zoe Lomas-Clarke and Mark Soars in the Feva this year. First Cadet was current National Champion Sam Nee and new crew for the year Isabelle Davies finishing in 13th place. The Cadet and Tera fleets are having big numbers out training each Saturday morning. The kids really are the lifeblood of the club and it is great to see them race on a Saturday afternoon and further afield. It is definitely one club where keeping up with weekly results at home and away is not easy. First ILCA 6 was Tristan Harding in 21st who along with Jago Moore are having great fun competing in the ILCA qualifiers. First RS200 is Stefan Bennet and Nicki Yelland in 18th. My performance of the series if I'm allowed to nominate goes to Dan Shaw (ILCA 7). A former Commodore who was bullied into buying a newer Laser to replace one that was elderly. Dan finished 12th overall with a string of top 6 results and first ILCA 7. I would say the new Laser was worth it.

Easter Sunday sees Solo, Enterprise, ILCA, 2.4mR, GP14, and the Mixed Handicap (K Class) finish their winter series. Whilst Pursuit/Handicap racing is great it is nice to class race. The K Class racing will come down to the wire with the podium all tied on points. Summer series starts next week, Wednesday evening are only a few weeks away and Sailability are opening back up for the Summer.

Overall Results: (top six)

1st Megan Pascoe 2.4mR 9pts
2nd Clive Eplett RS100 8.4 29.5pts
3rd Jeremy Hudson K1 29.8pts
4th Kate Hedley 2.4mR 36pts
5th Richard Moore Phantom 40pts
6th Simon Bond Phantom 41pts

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