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By Stuart Jones

Despite a grim light wind forecast for the weekend of 15th & 16th August, 24 Contenders turned up at Weston SC for a combined meeting with the Europes. This decent turnout was helped by an impressive 10 boats from the home club and a couple from nearby Netley.

Race 1 started with a bit of hope of some breeze, but as with the rest of the day, it proved to be fickle, shifty and unpredictably selective as it drifted down from Southampton City Centre. Local knowledge seemed to be paying as Mike Murley and Keith Paul were best at deciphering what was going on. Carl Tagoe, with his new Germanic technology did well to hang on in third, with new World Champion Simon Mussell, showing he can do it in the lighter stuff in fourth.

Race 2 set off, after a little shuffling of the marks, in the same type of wind only with bigger lulls. Stuart Jones was seen reaching in from the right of the beat, only to be thwarted and still having to do a couple of tacks. This let Roger White in, to lead from Graeme Wilcox. Robert Angus was showing impressive speed on all points and was not far behind. Roger looked comfortable until boat preparation let him down, literally in this case, his trapeze line breaking. This left Graeme to lead down the run. A shift on the next beat saw Robert, Stuart and Jeremy Blaydes nip past to finish in that order. Simon (the WC), popped his nose in the mix after a great second beat only to disappear again having included a step overboard without trapeze attached manoeuvre. It was that sort of day!!

The marks were shuffled again for race 3 before the fleet got away at the second attempt on a port end biased line. Those at the port end were left to rue their starting prowess, however, with a big right shift lifting the fleet past seconds after the start. This race turned out to be a Weston local knowledge benefit as the wind became lighter, shiftier and patchier. Sir Keith showed his many years of knowledge at the venue, picking his way round to win. He was followed by the consistent Dennis Fisher and the all or nothing Mike Murley. Special mention should go to David Bate, in the very old borrowed club boat, for showing good boat speed and putting it in the right place to finish sixth, with only Weston boats in front of him.

Then it was off to the bar for games, beer and curry. Some of the talk was of Sundays forecast and the flat calm expected which, as Sunday dawned, was received. So that was it, Sir Keith Paul had added a Weston open win to his Worlds Grand Masters title showing that consistency pays. Robert Angus and Dennis Fisher were close behind with Stuart ‘I’ve so done badly’ Jones in fourth for the golden pen award.

Pos

No

Helm

Club

R1

R2

R3

Total

Nett

1st

589

Keith Paul

Weston

2

8

1

11

11

2nd

703

Robert Angus

Weston

7

1

5

13

13

3rd

673

Dennis Fisher

Weston

5

7

2

14

14

4th

2465

Stuart Jones

Datchet Water

9

2

7

18

18

5th

2373

Mike Murley

Weston

1

15

3

19

19

6th

2607

Carl Tagoe

Oxford

3

5

14

22

22

7th

2439

Gary Langdown

Highcliffe

6

9

8

23

23

8th

622

Graeme Wilcox

Netley

11

4

9

24

24

9th

2522

Chris Boshier

Thorpe Bay

8

6

13

27

27

10th

2588

Jeremy Blaydes

Weston

15

3

16

34

34

11th

2572

Ed Presley

Chew Valley

10

10

15

35

35

12th

2347

Martin Jones

Wilsonian

12

17

10

39

39

13th

652

Nick Curry

Weston

22

14

4

40

40

14th

89

David Bate

Weston

25.0 DNC

11

6

42

42

15th

630

James Spikesley

Netley

13

12

17

42

42

16th

716

Richard Franks

Weston

14

18

12

44

44

17th

2420

Simon Mussell

Highcliffe

4

16

25.0 DNF

45

45

18th

2496

Tony Brooks

Oxford

19

19

11

49

49

19th

2432

Jerry Hone

Lancing

21

13

20

54

54

20th

2599

Tony Cook

Downs

17

21

19

57

57

21st

4

Mark Jackson

RYA

20

20

21

61

61

22nd

58

Clive Evans

Weston

16

25.0 DNC

25.0 DNC

66

66

23rd

686

Ralph Drew

Weston

23

25.0 DNC

18

66

66

24th

712

Rodger White

King George

18

25.0 DNC

25.0 DNC

68

68

 

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