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Henri-Lloyd - For the Obsessed

Solution Inland Championships 2024 at Northampton Sailing Club

by Jon Steward 17 Jun 21:22 BST 15-16 June 2024
Solution Inland Championships at Northampton © Jon Steward

The Solution Inland Championships were held in association with the Phantom class at Northampton Sailing Club on the 3rd weekend in June.

Two boats from Lee-on-the-Solent and one from Delph arrived early on Friday to take advantage of the offer of joining in with the Phantom class training day. After spending some time bimbling on shore they headed out onto the lake to participate in the training session where they enjoyed short sprint races in favourable 10-12 knot breeze, before a 25knkt squall ended the session and sent everyone ashore for a debrief.

By Friday evening several other solutions had arrived from Warsash, LOSSC,Leigh & Lowton and Great Yarmouth and Gorleston so dinner from the curry house was delivered to the club for all to enjoy.

Saturday morning arrived with more wind then anticipated and a short delay to the racing was held in the hope of missing thunder and lightening. Eight hardy Solution sailors headed downwind to the start area with thunder rumbling behind. At the start of race 1 the phantoms got away cleanly in 15knts of breeze, but with around 2 minutes to the Solution start a squall came rolling down the reservoir with breeze in the 20 gusting 25+ range making it a slog to windward, the inverted P course meant the Solution fleet was passing the Phantoms as they returned downwind on port causing some chaos.

Several Solutions sensibly retired from race one with Ian Morgan, Richard Gibbon and Jon Steward battling it out at the front, with Martin Tubb and Richard Brown a little way behind some temporary gear failure for Ian and capsizes for Richard and Jon meant they all had a turn at leading the race. After 40 mins of racing on lap 3 the windward mark dragged anchor and the race was abandoned but the sailors were unaware and confusion ensued when rounding mark 3 and heading back past the line it was discovered the committee boat had left station and located to a new starting area.

There was a long wait before the next start while the course was re laid and the whole solution fleet headed ashore to take respite from the 25knt+ gusts.

The phantom fleet eventually got under way for the restart of race 1 and from watching at the top end of the reservoir with the sun shining and the wind appearing to be easing decisions were made as to whether to re launch or find cake or indeed both!

Six boats launched and headed for the start area where we waited for the phantoms for finish there race the pleasant 10-15 knot breeze and sunshine returned giving a false sense of security but not for long as the dark clouds arrived bringing wind and rain, the solution fleet waited for nearly an hour as the course was re-laid and the Phantom fleet suffered two general recalls.

Eventually the Solutions got away for the start of race 1B with Richard Gibbon getting the best start and holding first for most of the race, Ian Morgan and Jon Steward battled it out for second before Ian shook off Jon and hunted down Richard to take the lead, Martin and Richard Brown had a tussle of their own.

With race 1b over, the wind not showing signs of abating, the fleet headed ashore to recuperate ahead of day 2.

The galley put on a fantastic roast dinner and an enjoyable and social evening in the bar.

Sunday morning came with more favourable conditions and a hope of achieving all three races, fortified by a full English breakfast from the sailing club galley all eight sailors headed out in pleasant but shifty 8-10knot winds for races 4, 5 & 6 of the championship.

With the same course as Saturday but much better weather the fleet enjoyed close racing with everyone participating in the positioning game of snakes and ladders.

Jon had the best start of race 4 and took a convincing lead up the beat until Ian won a lucky lift while everyone else was headed and took the lead for his 2nd win on the weekend, Mark Jackson and Mark Fox were having a battle of there own regularly switching places as can bee seen in the results.

In race 5 it was again very close between all sailors with Kathryn Clark motoring up the beat and troubling the leaders at the windward mark, with Richard Brown and Martin Tubb showing there prowess off wind both pulled sailors pulled ahead of Richard Gibbon who took a very different route from the leeward mark back through the gate to reclaim third place.

In the interval between races 5 & 6 while we waited for the Phantoms to have another general recall the wind increased to a steady 12 gusting 15 knots and the wind chill had many sailors reaching for their spray tops.

Richard Gibbon realising he had to beat Jon to avoid 3rd place and therefore having to write the race report closed the door on Jon and Kathryn at the committee boat end of the line allowing Mark Jackson to show the rest of the fleet how starting should be done and romped away to windward. The Final race ended with the sailors in the same positions as the overall results.

The Solution class would like to thank Northampton Sailing Club for hosing out event and providing prizes.

The next Solution open meeting will be held at Lee-on-the-Solent Sailing club on the 10th&11th of August and we hope to see any Solution sailors who haven't yet been to an open there.

More information at: www.solutionclass.org / www.facebook.com/groups/151010924993 / www.youtube.com/@solutionclassassociation

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmClubR2R4R5R6Pts
1st408Ian MorganWarsash SC‑11113
2nd464Richard GibbonLee‑on‑the‑Solent SC2‑3327
3rd444Jon StewardLee‑on‑the‑Solent SC‑32237
4th462Richard BrownGreat Yarmouth & Gorleston SC‑544412
5th456Martin TubbLeigh & Lowton SC4‑55514
6th455Kathryn ClarkDelph SC(DNC)66618
7th469Mark FoxLee‑on‑the‑Solent SC(DNC)78722
8th414Mark JacksonLee‑on‑the‑Solent SC(DNC)87823

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