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Henri-Lloyd - For the Obsessed

Hartley Boats Contender British Nationals at Paignton Sailing Club - Day 2

by Ed Presley 16 Jun 16:15 BST 13-16 June 2024

All things seemed easy until we sailed out to the start. A massive squall before any racing had been attempted was the first warning sign, the second was the change in climate every time a new cloud rolled by. That said the RO staunchly chose action, and off we went.

Spray, wild tiller waggles and a boiling ocean made for a frantic first beat, with Ed Presley coming from the left to ease in front, chased by Simon Mussell, Ben Holden and Tom Hooton. Ed managed to squeeze a lead that was eroded by a fast advancing 3, with Graeme Wilcox beginning to surface up the next beat. Ed regained his advantage on the run and led to the end, Simon threw it in on the last gybe so that Ben claimed 2nd and Graeme 3rd. Honourable mention to Nathan who was seen heading to France on the face of a death gust only to eventually regain control and get across the line. A similar fate for Nick Arran who capsized in front of the line but was determined to make the effort count and fought hard to get across the line.

The next race started in similar fashion, Ed first with a chasing pack. This race was noticeable for its nuclear gusts, the death gust on the run will be often recalled in Contender Lore, there were many sad stories throughout the fleet. Ed managed to stay frosty to win in a god sent shortened course, from Graeme and Simon. Broken spirits and one broken mast for a surprisingly cheerful Dave Davies at the end of some proper blasting.

All this means Graeme is still 1st Ed is 2 point back and Simon the same again.

Slightly less tomorrow...

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