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Parkstone Yacht Club Easter Series

by Christina Moncur 3 Apr 13:36 BST 30-31 March 2024
Merlin Rockets during the Parkstone Yacht Club Easter Series © David Law

Parkstone Yacht Club Easter Series 30-31 March 2024, incorporating the CP from L&L Merlin Rocket South West Circuit. 61 boats entered the Easter Series at Parkstone Yacht Club across all classes with Flying Fifteens, ILCAs, Merlin Rockets, Dart 18s, RS200s, RS400s and a Wayfarer entered.

Sunshine and a south easterly greeted the competitors as they arrived on Saturday morning and the Race Team has taken the option to hoist the Orange Flag and take the Club's new committee boat to top triangle on the hunt for better windward options for the fleets.

To split the Merlin Rocket Fleet from the rest of the fleets they were sent to a windward mark and then towards Brownsea for a windward leeward before heading back to the finish for their first race. The race team turned them around quickly avoiding the ILCA and Flying Fifteen fleets for a Windward Leeward. David and Vicky Lenz (3778) finished the day with a 1st and 3rd, along with Tom Gillard and Rachel Gray (3759) leading the fleet with a 3rd and a first. Christian Birrell and Sam Brearey (3788) had a second in the first race with Ben Saxton and Matt Rainback (3804) taking the second in the second race.

For the other fleets they were sent on a mixture of windward leewards and triangle sausage courses for their two races.

The Flying Fifteen fleet saw two race winners, Crispin Read Wilson and Steve Brown (4101) in the first race and Bob Alexander and Phil Angrave (3537) in the second. Geof Gibbons and Dave Moy (4088) had a good first day with a third and a second.

In the ILCA 7 fleet Michael Atkinson (71) had a good first day with a first and a second, with Chris Whalley (210410) taking first in the second race.

In the ILCA 6 fleet Fiona Wall (30) took the win in the first race and Louis Voss (207082) won the second.

At the end of the first day of racing there were plenty of smiles in the Clubhouse and it was great to see the bar buzzing with after sailing chat.

Sunday dawned with a more substantial ENE/E winds and racing returned to the Platform to start. The Merlin Rockets were set a Windward Leeward for their first race before been sent on a three-sail reach towards Brownsea in the second.

The Flying Fifteens, Darts, Wayfarers and RS400s were sent on a Course Book course back to top triangle with some long beats testing the crews on their first weekend on the water. The RS200s and ILCAs were sent on a Triangle Sausage course. For their second race they were all kept closer to the platform for Sausage Triangles courses, although the first race length meant that several crews decided to head back to the club early.

Following racing the fleets returned to the Club for the prize-giving.

The Flying Fifteens had opted to have no discards and Crispin Read Wilson and Steve Brown (4101) won the weekend with three 1sts and a third followed by Bob Alexander and Phil Angrave (3537) were second with one first and three seconds with Geof Gibbons and Dave Moy (4101) in third.

It was close in the Merlin Rocket fleet and Tom Gillard and Rachael Gray (3759) won the weekend with a 3rd, 2nd and two 1sts. Ben Saxton and Matt Rainback (3804) were second and Christian Birrell and Sam Brearey were third.

In the ILCA 7 Michael Atkinson (71) had a consistent weekend holding on to his lead from Saturday winning the weekend. Alan Davis (220433) had a better second day with a first and second finishing second overall. Chris Whalley (210410) finished third.

In the ILCA 6 Simon Crowther (216388) had an excellent second day with two 1sts to win the weekend overall. Louis Voss (207082) was second and Gordon Bisset (203039) was third.

The Dart18 was won by Charles Hillier and Henry Keats (8014).

The RS200 was won by Ben Whaley and Alex Barker (1700).

Paul Frey and Emily Keats (1407) won the RS400.

Sean and Helen Murray (11139) won the Wayfarers.

A great weekend racing!

Full results can be found at

Whilst the dinghies were enjoying great racing conditions in the Harbour our cruising section were headed to the Solent for the first rally of the season. The weather preceding the weekend put a number of boats off, so it was a small group that headed for Lymington on Saturday. The crews enjoyed the sunshine and had a lovely sail over the bay, followed by an excellent dinner at the King's Head. All the boats enjoyed the Easterlies which brought them back on Sunday in under 4 hours.

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