BKL Qualifiers 4: Hayling Island 12-13 June event report by Tom Low
Photo Credit – Peter Hickson
What a weekend!! The most fantastic venue, glorious sunshine, best racing format on the planet, 12 highly competitive club crews represented by competitors from all four corners of the UK, and all we needed was some wind.
HISC provided 4 teams, introducing some younger members into keelboat racing with a couple and the rest of the field was made up by strong teams from West Hoe, Queen Mary, Dorchester, Swansea Alumni, Middle Nene, Royal Thames, Felpham and London Corinthians sailing clubs.
Saturday morning looked a little bleak. 2-4 knots and competing wind directions meant that racing was postponed for a while as we all waited for something to settle. Just before lunch it arrived and off we went with a 5-7 knot sea-breeze providing absolute champagne sailing conditions. A forgiving wind strength combined with negotiating the tide and shallow shifts made it super-interesting on the racecourse and delivered hope and heart-ache in equal measure within each race.
13 races were sailed on the Saturday and the Race Officer and team did a great job in getting them in the bank. Hayling Island was absolutely glorious – turquoise sea, white sandy beaches, lovely breeze and great racing – we could have been in Freemantle or the Bahamas.
Day 2 threatened to start in the same way as day 1 but the sky was clearer and the sun stronger and the breeze arrived early at about 7 knots and pretty steady. Racing was tight and competitive and aside from the odd gear failure, everyone was buzzing.
Cracking conditions and lots of sunscreen enabled us to get 17 races in on the Sunday to bring the final tally up to 30 for the event.
The end results saw the HISC boat sailed by Frances Partington, Tristan Jaques, Paul Childs and Chris Oneill triumphant with a very deserving victory from a fantastic and consistent set of results (7 bullets, 5 seconds, 2 thirds and 1 forth). Second was Royal Thames – Scott Wallis; Jemima Lawson; Matt Wallis; Dave Robertson , third was Middle Nene – Simon Childs; Kate Greer; Mark Greer; Phoebe Connellan, fourth for Queen Mary, fifth and sixth were HISC, the very talented and good-looking West Hoe were seventh, eighth Swansea Alumni, ninth was HISC, tenth was Royal Corinthian, eleventh was Felpham and twelfth was Dorchester.
Congratulations to all the crews, some of which were in keelboats and RS21s for the first time and also a massive thank-you to the race committee, HISC and of course the Umpires. Anecdotal feedback from the latter indicated that we were a pretty forgiving fleet and many infringements were either not noticed or just not protested.
This event, programme and format is what sailing is all about. Superb venue and conditions, competitive racing, teams of all ages, great boats and lots and lots of smiling people.
Pos – Keelboat Team – No. Races – Total Pts – Average Pts
1st Hayling Island SC (P) – Frances Partington, Tristan Jaques, Paul Childs and Chris Oneill- – 15 – – 78 – – 5.2 pts
2nd Royal Thames YC (T) – Scott Wallis; Jemima Lawson; Matt Wallis; Dave Robertson – – 15 – – 66 – – 4.4 pts
3rd Middle Nene SC (M) Simon Childs; Kate Greer; Mark Greer; Phoebe Connellan- – 16 – – 70 – – 4.38 pts
4th Queen Mary SC (Q) Christopher Eames; Rachel Tilley; Emily Wiltshire; Tom Williams- – 15 – – 62 – – 4.13 pts
5th Hayling Island SC (F) Finley Dickinson; Sam Dickinson; Sam Edwards; TBC- – 15 – – 56 – – 3.73 pts
6th Hayling Island SC (Z) Dave Dobrijevic; Emily Covell; Rachel Dobrijevic; Jock Calvert- – 16 – – 59 – – 3.69 pts
7th West Hoe SC (H) – Tom Low; Ed Low; Inga Lovric; Ben Gilbert – – 15 – – 51 – – 3.4 pts
8th Swansea Alumni SC (S) – James Curtis; Sarah Jarman; Ryan Casey; Patrick Ratcliffe- – 13 – – 41 – – 3.15 pts
9th Hayling Island SC (V) – Leo Wilkinson; Sam Jones; Monique Vennis-Ozanne; Robin Stein- 15 – – 43 – – 2.87 pts
10th London Corinthians SC (L) – Peter Hamment; Anna Dobson; Catherine Martin Jones; Michael Gorzowski – 14 – – 38 – – 2.71 pts
11th Felpham SC (C) – Dylan Collingbourne; Tom Twist; Ellie Hutchings; Haydn Sewell- – 15 – – 32 – – 2.13 pts
12th Dorchester SC (D) – Benjamin Broadbent; Dan Batty; Eleanor Butler; Toby Broadbent – 16 – – 31 – – 1.94 pt