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Hansa Class UK National Championships 2024 at Whitefriars Sailing Club

by David Durston 6 Jun 07:41 BST 31 May - 2 June 2024

The Hansa National Championships were held at Whitefriars Sailing Club in the beautiful Cotswolds Water Park over three days from the 31st of May to the 2nd of June.

Attendance was good, with 32 boats taking part across the 4 fleets. We welcomed three international sailors, who traveled from The Netherlands and Ireland to compete; adding to the already highly competitive Liberty entry. There were 9 Liberty’s altogether, 12 Hansa 303 one-person entries, 7 303 2-person boats, and 4 Hansa 2.3’s in the event.

The weather threw up its usual challenges for the highly experienced and competent race team. This year the north/north easterly wind meant that it was very difficult to set a long beat on the lake. A short trapezoid course meant that there were lots of pinch points at mark rounding’s with all fleets meeting often. The windward mark threw up challenges because the tree line caused shifty conditions and a large range of wind strengths. Areas of pressure and holes led to many changes in positions across the fleets throughout the races.

In all of the fleets there were a few stand out performances who clearly read the conditions well to outperform the opposition. In the Liberty fleet Mike Everitt and Vera Vorbach dominated, with 7 1st places between them. Mike converted to the Liberty from a 303 for the event, and challenged Vera who is the current Hansa European champion and a former World champion. Going into the final day they were separated by just one point, but Mike came out on top to take the title of Hansa National Champion 2024.

In the Hansa 303 1-person fleet Rory McKinna, the 2023 National Champion was driven hard by Jazz Turner who sails with her assistance dog, Phoebe. Rory and Jazz shared the top 2 places across the board. Also down to the last day, Rory just nudged it, finishing on 9 points compared with Jazz’s 11, thereby retaining the trophy.

The 2-person fleet was more of a three horse race between Lynne Swan with her husband Stuart, father and son team Harry and Nick Holland, and Rick and Sue Jillings. With 5 1st places Lynne and Stuart took the title, the Holland’s 2nd, and the Jillings 3rd.

Lindsay Burns retained her title in the 2.3 class, with Lara Sturgis 2nd, and Phil Monk, who is a newcomer to Hansa events from the home club, coming 3rd. Phil was new to sailing at the end of last season.

Each year a sailor is awarded the Endeavour award which recognises extraordinary effort. This year it was won by Sophie Brisley. At 13, and had never attended a Hansa event, let alone a Nationals before, Sophie was nervous about taking part, coming last, and getting in the way of others. In fact she finished 10th overall and had a 6th and 7th place along the way, no mean feat in such an experienced fleet.

Alongside the racing there is always a lovely social scene between sailors and volunteers from the Hansa community and the host club. This year we enjoyed a quiz and a BBQ on the Friday, a curry night on Saturday, and finished the event with freshly made cream tea on a sunny Sunday afternoon. Many thanks to WSC members, Simon who catered the weekend, and Jo and Pauline for the delightful cream teas. The perfect end to a fantastic event.

For more photos please visit the class website, www.hansaclass.org.uk

For more information about the Hansa Class follow us on Facebook or Instagram @HansaClassUK.

Overall Results:

PosHelm (& Crew)ClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8Pts
Liberty class
1Mike EverittFrensham Pond Sailability1141152111
2Vera VoorbachWV Zeewolde3512213315
3Paul PhillipsFrensham Pond Sailability2435521421
4Paul PearsonRutland Sailing Club/Sailability6323344524
5David DurstonWhitefriars Sailing Club4256636228
6Hanneke DeenenWV Zeewolde56(RET)4765639
7Tessa WatkissFrensham Pond Sailability8777478848
8Mary DuffyBray Sailing Club Ireland9888887754
9Chris EmmetRutland Sailing Club/Sailability7(RET)6(DNC)(RET)(DNC)(DNC)(DNC)63
303 1 Person class
1Rory McKinnaClyde Cruising Club111221219
2Jazz TurnerNewhaven and Seaford Sailing Club2221121211
3Margaret ForemanFrensham Pond Sailability3446375328
4Bex FoulshamOxford Sailability5533454428
5James WoosnamFrensham Pond Sailability43751036533
6George PaxfordWhitefriars Sailing Club765105411643
7Debra PenningtonNotts County Sailing Club67941199852
8Adam BillanyDerwent Reservoir(RET)(RET)117683755
9Kim DaviesFrensham Pond Sailability896118107957
10Sophie BrisleyWhitefriars Sailing Club9111087681058
11Rebecca WillcoxWhitefriars Sailing Club1088121211121172
12Logan BellRutland Sailing Club/Sailability1110129912101273
303 2 Person class
1Lynne and Stuart SwanChesil Sailability121113129
2Harry and Nick HollandFrensham Pond Sailability2322242114
3Rick and Sue JillingsCarsington Sailing Club4134313318
4Paula Roddy and PaulNorthampton Sailing Club3543454427
5Tom Hepburn and Denise BryantChesil Sailability5455525531
6Antony Williams and GrahamWhitefriars Sailing Club6666666642
2.3 class
1Lindsay BurnsFrensham Pond Sailability1111111(DNC)7
2Lara SturgisFrensham Pond Sailability4322234117
3Phil MonkWhitefriars3433422219
4Andrew LebecFrensham Pond Sailability2244343321

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