Spring Championships
Oxford Sailing Club
6 April 2013

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National Solo Spring Championship 2013

Author: Will Loy

After months of freezing temperatures and biting easterly winds the Spring Championship was held in very 'Spring like' conditions, hosted by Oxford Sailing Club. There was much confusion amongst the 67 helms as to what to wear, drysuit had been the default setting but the warm caress of the sun duped some into neoprene. The north-north-easterly wind still delivered a punch and the erratic deviation of direction caused much head scratching throughout the day. In the year that is shaping up to a huge show at Hayling Island for the National Solo Nationals’ and Nations’ Cup (July 13-19), the main players were on the water, Cumbley, Davis, Simms, Mitchell junior (sorry Dave) and Pinnell. Ian was especially chuffed as he will shortly be flying out to Barbados for the 505 Worlds. The vagaries of the wind direction soon wiped any smile off his face and there were plenty in the queue who were equally dumped on, and from a great height.

Race 1 got away following a couple of false starts, black flags took out a few of the protagonists, I shoved a few over the line as they looked to fill the nice little gap I had made myself at the committee boat. Like a new inmate at Brixton, they felt I should get a proper welcome. The fleet set off as the bands of pressure oscillated down/across the water. One moment you were genius, the next goon. Charlie Cumbley posted his intent with a win in the North Sails/Sailboat Solo (it needs a snappier name Tony) and some considerable distance ahead of defending National Champion Andy Davis in the HD Sails/Winder. Jon Clarke in the Edge Sails/Winder was third, the conditions taking him back to his days sailing at Rugby S.C. There is obviously a benefit to sailing half the race looking backwards as he tacks and gybes that way. Fourth was Tim Davison and fifth was John Blundell. There were train wrecks and I was a willing passenger. After racing an old Solo for two years I have got used to rolling the proverbial dice but they were loaded against the gambler.

Race 2 got away with a few casualties, Chris Brown and Michael Dray amongst them, at least they were saved from another snakes and ladders race. Cumbley and Davis were buried and spent the rest of the race making places like bankers make profits but could only manage tenth and thirteenth respectively. Roger Battersby nailed the race, finding the right shift at the right time and sustaining the lead, no easy feat in the erratic conditions and with 66 sailors at his heels. Simon Maskell took second, showing good early season form. Jon Clarke finished third and was having a stormer of a regatta. Ewan Birkin-Walls in the North/Boon took fourth and his seventh in race 1 put him in a sweet position overall behind Jon with 3,3.

Race 3 and all to play for. The sun was sinking slowly and the chill was seeping into the bones but on the water the breeze was holding its strength, it’s direction still yet undecided. The pin end was favoured so there was a bunch down there and like the catchphrase in Highlander, 'there can be only one' Davis managed to squeeze through the bunfight. Seeing the mess up ahead Charlie had held back a little, all the years of training, regattas and stored memories factored into his personal onboard computer (brain). Charlie tacked on the gun, and found pressure and a clear lane to take charge of the race. Davis worked the left and as the wind filled from that quadrant he benefited nicely. Mike Wilkie had been to the table and half way up the beat he looked like he had beaten the house. Alas, the wind gods decreed otherwise as he was left out on the right. He must have said a quiet prayer as the breeze swung again and he rounded in the top five. Cumbley extended, Davis consolidated, Blundell took third to go with his fifth and Ian Hopwood found his form with a fourth and no capsizes.

So Charlie Cumbley defended the title he won a year ago, Andy Davis finished second and Jon Clarke third.

The club and officials did a sterling job in organising the event, the catering I am told was lovely, I was busy fixing a sheavebox at lunchtime but grabbed some cake and I congratulate the cake maker.

1stCharlie CumbleyWarsash53871(10)1122
2ndAndy DavisBlithfield53422(13)2174
3rdJon Clarke (v)Draycote Water474833(5)116
4thJohn BlundellStaunton Harold53885(15)3238
5thEwan Birkin-WallsGrafham Water513574(14)2511
6thSimon Maskell (gm)Hunts5339102(15)2712
7thAndy FriarRudyard Lake5397(14)762713
8thDaniel GoodmanLittleton4735(17)593114
9thRoger Battersby (v)Sutton Bingham4986(20)1163717
10thPete MitchellHayling island5363(11)1183019
11thSteve DenisonHollingworth Lake5263(25)8124520
12thIan PinnellNorthampton489916(19)74223
13thBen CooperSpinnaker3462(68.0 DNF)14109224
14thTim Davison (gm)Draycote Water52054(27)215225
15thStuart Bush (vn)Shustoke5191817(68.0 DNF)9325
16thSimon Lomas-ClarkeFrensham Pond4800216(28)5527
17thIan HopwoodNantwich5384(40)2446828
18thAndy TunnicliffeRWYC53409(26)195428
19thRuss Lonsdale (v)West Oxfordshire4927623(68.0 DNF)9729
20thGuy Lonsdale (v)South Cerney45121516(20)5131
21stJohn Webster (gmn)Carsington5321269(29)6435
22ndRichard PepperdineSHSC5246(68.0 BFD)122510537
23rdRay Collins (gm)Locks53092218(27)6740
24thDavid Mitchell (v)RYA53101922(68.0 DNF)10941
25thMark Harper (v)Chichester505930(32)137543
26thAlastair RaynardCarsington5037(35)25187843
27thDavid Walford (v)Broadwater5320(29)20237243
28thPaul Hurn (v)Littleton475833(46)119044
29thChris BrownRYA484923(68.0 BFD)2211345
30thDerek Jackman (gm)Chichester5237(46)29179246
31stNigel DaviesDraycote Water53261828(33)7946
32ndAndy Anderson (v)Paxon Lakes45062821(32)8149
33rdJerome BakkerHayling Island500427(38)269153
34thMark Lee (vn)Weymouth513024(68.0 DNC)3412658
35thAndrew FoxLeigh and Lowton539839(47)2411063
36thIan Firth (v)Notts County50703730(39)10667
37thAndrew ThompsonChipstead515231(53)3612067
38thTim Wade (gm)Spinnaker52733434(35)10368
39thRobert Trend (v)Chipstead3061(49)313811869
40thCharles Stimpson (v)Spinnaker4857(56)393112670
41stGraham Wilson (gm)Northampton47363835(43)11673
42ndMock HealyChipstead5230(47)453012275
43rdPaul Whybrow (v)Tamar Lake4524(61)334513978
44thGeoff Silcock (gm)Bowmoor53784236(44)12278
45thMichael SimsCarsington530212(68.0 DSQ)68.0 DNF14880
46thMike DrayLittleton438613(68.0 BFD)68.0 DNF14981
47thPaul Bristow (v)Burghfield44833250(68.0 DNF)15082
48thMike Wilkie (gm)Littleton47724141(68.0 DNF)15082
49thD RudmanChipstead3977(54)434013783
50thJeff Dalton (vn)Frensham Pond5371(52)444113785
51stPatrick Overs (v)Paxton Lakes513843(68.0 BFD)4215385
52ndGlen Wells (v)Bartley52334442(68.0 DNF)15486
53rdJason AldousPapercourt45425037(68.0 DNF)15587
54thKevin Andrews (v)Notts County4920(57)404714487
55thEleanor DaviesSouth Staffs3576(55)484815196
56thKen Twemlow (v)Notts County502751(68.0 DNC)4616597
57thNigel PybusDraycote Water444936(68.0 DNC)68.0 DNC172104
58thNigel KingLymington Town4680(68.0 BFD)68.0 BFD37173105
59thDoug Kerr (vn)Oxford45015949(68.0 DNC)176108
60thGavin Vaughan (v)Carsington52985854(68.0 DNF)180112
61stBrenda HoultHill Head520445(68.0 BFD)68.0 DNC181113
62ndMark Fowler (vn)Littleton54056055(68.0 DNF)183115
63rdTim Polglase (v)Hayling Island514548(68.0 DNC)68.0 DNC184116
64thAndrew Boyce (v)Papercourt5115(68.0 BFD)5168.0 DNF187119
65thJo GoyderOxford4499(68.0 DNS)5268.0 DNF188120
66thWill LoyRYA540453(68.0 DNC)68.0 DNF189121
67thRob SimmondsOxford518262(68.0 DNC)68.0 DNC198130


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