Traveller, Thorpe Bay Yacht Club 23-24 April 2005

On 23-24 April the first event of the Sprint 15 fleet Summer Traveller series was held at Thorpe Bay. 11 travellers joined 7 from the home club making an entry of 18. On Saturday Race Officer, Geoff Appleton, set a large rectangular course with an immense beat and run in a force 3 easterly breeze. Race 1 got away on time - which was a bit of a shock to about half the fleet, who were late due to a long sail to the starting area. Because of this the race was a bit of a procession favouring those who started on time. The finishing sequence was Bob Carter, Philip Howden, Gordon Goldstone and Peter Richardson. Race 2 was sailed back to back with race 1 and Carter led with George Stephen in second place for much of the race until Stephen hit the penultimate buoy of the race letting Howden through into second place, so Stephen had to be content with third.

On Sunday the proceedings started with a one lap Pro-Am training race where the hot shots help the less experienced sailors go quicker. The K2 team - Keith Bartlett aided and abetted by Keith Ball won by a large margin but many useful hints and tips were exchanged down the fleet.

By time for race 3 of the series the wind had freshened to a force 4 Easterly and the sun was shining in glorious sailing conditions. The port bias on the start line spread the fleet and it was Carter who led Ball from the port end of the line. The conditions were very much to Ball's liking and he held second for the whole race. 3rd place was hotly contended and it was class Chairman, Nick Dewhirst who narrowly took 3rd at the end from Howden and Richardson. In race 4 it was Ball who took an early lead from Carter and Chris Maloney, who had got the bit between his teeth after the Pro-Am. By the windward mark it was Carter leading Goldstone, who had found an advantage up the shore but on the run Ball sailed by Goldstone into a second place which was never seriously challenged. On the second lap Howden also sailed past Goldstone who was seriously lacking downwind speed on the day.

Thus after a very pleasant weekend sailing it was the Grafham trio of Carter, Howden and Ball who scored 1,2,3. Andrew Hannah was the leading local of a young and improving fleet but Duncan Ford and Chris Maloney were not far behind. The only swimmer of the weekend was Gerald Sverdloff

The next event of the series is at Rutland on 14-15 May.

Overall Results
1st R. Carter Grafham 3pts
2nd P. Howden Grafham 7pts
3rd K. Ball Grafham 11pts
4th G. Goldstone Queen Mary 11pts
5th N. Dewhirst Whitstable 13pts

Pro-Am Winner: K Bartlett

Top Locals Results: 9thA Hannah, 11th D Ford, 12th C Mahoney

For the full results, see the series table here.