15 boats descended on the Colne Estuary for round 9 of the Contender TT Series held at Brightlingsea SC.

Saturday provided some trying conditions for both helms and the race team. With a shifty patchy F2coupled with spring tides racing was more akin to a ‘Classic Cowes Week’!
Contender open meeting at BrightlingseaRace 1 looked to be heading Ben Holden’s way only for him to throw one to many covering tacks in on the last beat, slowing him down allowing Matt Aston to snatch the win on the line.

Race 2 followed a similar pattern with boats being left stranded at the top mark as the wind died, allowing for large gaps to appear, which then disintegrated at the leeward mark. Bernard Shapley gots to terms with the conditions and as the wind eventually arrived stole the bullet from Holden.

Race 3 and this was Holden’s from the start to finish. Aston pulled through to 2nd ahead of Simon Mussell.
Holden’s consistency left him in the driving seat for Sunday. However in race 4, with the wind a much steadier F3, when the leaders were recalled for OCS, rounding the ends resulted in bedlum. Aston recovered best, eventually finding the front for a second win from Tony Burton and Shapley.

Matt Aston at Brightlingsea 2005Race 5 and Rodger White stepped up a gear to lead all the way round, ahead of a close finishing Aston then Holden.

So it went down to a ‘last race decider’. Aston just needed to finish ahead of Holden. White again led for much of the race only to let Aston through on the last beat and then Holden at the finish.

Many thanks go to the PRO and BrightlingseaSC for another quality event.

1st GBR 702 Matt Aston Datchet  7pts
2nd GBR2315 Ben Holden Halifax  10pts
3rd GBR2314 Rodger White Stewartby 16pts
4th GBR559  Bernard Shapley King George 19pts
5th GBR613  Tony Burton King George 26pts

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