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RS400 Harken Sprints and Rooster National Tour Round 2 at Rutland Sailing Club

by Jon Heissig 29 Apr 18:07 BST 20-21 April 2024

The forecast was not completely sure about the wind direction, but it was right about the temperature - cold to very cold!

Thirteen RS400s from diverse corners of the British Isles arrived at Rutland SC, with the sprint format ideal for getting the boat and teams up to speed and to clear off the Winter cobwebs. The race team provided the fleet with 12 races of approximately 30 minutes, with minimal waiting between the races.

Day 1 - wind 3 - 4 North Easterly

The starts were competitive, and the first beats were especially close. Tactics upwind often depended on missing the aerator bubbles, and a quick decision after the top mark was required for a gybe to clear the water tower which could make all the difference on getting into a gust or not. Despite plenty of place changes in the shifty and gusty conditions, Ollie Groves and Esther Parkhurst consistently had the speed and ability to find the right breeze to lead overnight, followed by Tom Halhead and Paul Hilliar, and Ian Walker and Anna Warren.

Day 2 - wind 3 to 5 North Easterly

After a sociable evening, the wind on Sunday felt stronger and colder with white horses showing in patches of sunlight. Ollie and Esther were packing up their boat, an injury had stopped play, whilst Steve Restall and Chris Stubbs decided to take their tea in the clubhouse instead of stocking up the picnic hamper.

The races remained very competitive with many position changes, with improvements from Max and Amy Burrows, Andy and Hannah Wilcox, and Matt and Ellie Sheahan. Tom and Paul won all but one of the remaining races closely followed on the water by Ian and Anna. Special mention goes to birthday boy David Swift who lost his hat in the first of his two birthday dips. As an indication of the standard of racing, the RS400s got a mention from the excellent principle Race Officer, John Fothergill, for the quality of starting. Going on the hoot the fleet was crossing the line within 2 to 3 seconds and no recalls. Although some were apparently very close!

So despite the cold it was a very enjoyable weekend. A big thank you to Rutland SC for hosting such a well-run event. Huge thanks to event sponsor Harken. And thank you to RS400 National Tour sponsor Rooster.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10R11R12Pts
1st1535Tom HalheadPaul HilliarLlandegfedd SC12522112111120
2nd1481Ian WalkerAnna WarrenWarsash SC43233533222234
3rd1502Jon HeissigNicky GriffinLlangorse SC66444321343343
4th1489David SwiftRobert BurgessWarsash SC34656649434559
5th1272Andy WilcoxHannah WilcoxHunts SC578971054657679
6th1435Matthew SheahanEllie SheahanWarsash SC8121089865565789
7th1526Ollie GrovesEster ParkhurstBeaver Sailing Club211112DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC92
8th1324Richard WatneyGrant ShoebridgeHISC1091111DNF7867784102
9th1189Steve RestallChris StubbsDowns SC753654DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC114
10th517Max BurrowsAmy BurrowsRutland SCDNC1313101213979968123
11th1355Paul ReynoldsMatthew ReynoldsBanbury SC118121311117888DNCDNC125
12th1029John CunninghamEmma BennisonCarsington SC12117710910DNSDNCDNCDNCDNC136
13th1383Phil RobinsonTim CresswellCarsington SC910912812DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC144

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