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Nathan and Anna Ackroyd are RS Feva Inland Champs

by RS media on 31 Oct 2006
RS Feva Inland Championship 2006 Fotoboat.com © http://www.fotoboat.com

We promised everyone a sunny weekend in Berkshire to round the Feva season off in style and so it was. The event was graced by wind, sun and random puffs of breeze with the by now traditional geniality of the superb host club to make events run smoothly. Ian Bullock and his crew at the club can take immense credit.

Four terrific races were held in a good breeze on Saturday and with the help of miracles the PRO got two decent races in Sunday. Feva hotshots Nathan and Anna Ackroyd (OK ex-Oppie & Topper as well if you really must know!) had to be pre-event favourites but with Oppie sensation Phil Sparks, crewed by brother Josh, in the fleet for his 2nd Feva event of the year how favoured can you be? Well, 17 knots of breeze sorted out the weight handicap and some phenomenally tight racing ensued.

At the end of day one it was advantage Ackroyd with 3 firsts and a third, whilst team Sparks had 3 seconds and a 5th. The youngsters had to fight though as veterans Rob Cage and Peter Curtis, both from Island Barn and crewed by daughter Georgie and son James respectively, made a tussle of it.

Tim Gratton/Chris Taylor and James Hamer/Ben Gratton ensured that competition was kept healthy with an injection of Hayling Island speed whilst the Fevas most improved sailors of the year (with apologies to Tally) James ‘Bolly’ Bollingbroke/Matt Heathcote dug in with 3 sevenths and a second. There was in fact stiff competition for the places throughout the fleet with great performances from newcomers/irregulars/travellers. Spinnaker with the Wallis’, Burghfield with the Bullocks, Hamiltons and Gibson/Colvin as well as the Kirks from Wales all had a hand in success.

Come Sunday though it was clear that the challenge was on at the top. Light winds, 67kg v 110kg, class experience v raw talent – who was going to win.

First blood went to Sparks with the Ackroyds fighting back from a dreadful first beat to claim 5th. This left the 2 protagonists separated by 1 point going into the final race. Having limbered up on the swings over an early lunch it was time to do or die.

The wind though played a major part as it capriciously came and went seemingly at random. Whilst to most observers it was random there was no denying the Cages who seemed to cage every puff and won by a huge margin.

Behind them it was a veritable game of snakes and ladders played most brilliantly by Alex Poyner/Holly Tucker who appeared several times to have been taken by the Curtis’ and the Minors boys. Sadly the Minors challenge faltered when weed got to the rudder.

Sportsmanship though is a hallmark of the class and Alex Poyner pointed out the problem when she observed it going in the opposite direction at a mark.

As to the victors? Well, Sparks had it by several places over the Ackroyds some halfway through the race. The Ackroyds showed character and determination to slowly pick the intervening competitors off and eventually overtake. Phil and Josh had gone down one cul-de-sac too many and parked up while a number went past them. With both boats having to discard the last race the championship went to class stalwarts Nathan and Anna Ackroyd. How dramatic was all that?! Phil and Josh Sparks are such great competitors and nice characters though that everyone appreciates their presence and wishes them all the best. The class look forward to seeing them again.

Meanwhile elsewhere, Jess Lavery/ Philippa Lawson paraded their credentials and talent coming in 10th overall whilst Charlie Esse/ Josh Irons in 11th started parental celebrations early. Anthony had the winning ticket for a holiday for 2 in the Carribean courtesy of nationals and worlds sponsor Sunsail Clubs Holidays. It was fantastic seeing boats come from Aldeburgh, Norfolk Broads, Papercourt, Whitstable, Thorpe Bay, Dabchicks/West Mersea, Emsworth, Chichester, Hayling, Burghfield, Warsash, Neyland (Wales), Mudeford, Spinnaker, Island Barn, Wraysbury, Lymington, Warsash and Bewl Valley – in no particular order!

Well, attention now turns to winter training – invites for National and Transition Squads will be out by the middle of the week or so. Anyone still interested in making a regional zone squad can still do so by contacting Jon Partridge at LDC or using the form on the documents section of the website.

Final overall results :

1 Nathan Ackroyd Anna Ackroyd Norfolk Broads YC 1 3 1 1 4 -8 18 10
2 Phil Sparks Josh Sparks Mudeford SC 2 2 2 5 1 -14 26 12
3 Rob Cage Georgina Cage Island Barn SC (43 DNF) 1 6 3 3 1 57 14
4 Peter Curtis James Curtis Island Barn -10 5 5 4 2 3 29 19
5 Tim Gratton Chris Taylor HISC / Wraysbury Lake SC 4 6 4 -7 6 5 32 25
6 James Hamer Ben Gratton Hayling Island SC 3 8 3 6 11 -18 49 31
7 James Bolingbroke Matt Heathcote Dabchicks SC 7 7 7 2 15 -16 54 38
8 Alex Poyner Holly Tucker Emsworth SC 12 -13 11 10 7 2 55 42
9 Paul Minors Mark Minors Royal Lymington YC 8 -20 8 13 8 7 64 44
10 Jessica Lavery Philippa Lawson Emsworth SC 5 14 10 8 10 -22 69 47
11 Charlie Esse Josh Irons RLYC & Spinnaker SC 6 -18 9 11 9 12 65 47
12 Matt Wallis Paul Harsent Spinnaker SC 14 4 14 9 -18 15 74 56
13 Kirsty Hill Hugh Gower BVSC 9 9 (43 DNF) 14 5 21 101 58
14 Jon Holmes Hamish Ellis Emsworth Slipper SC 13 16 12 -17 12 10 80 63
15 Craig Dibb Jamie Diamond Warsash SC -22 10 16 15 20 20 103 81
16 James Aylward Otto Collier Hayling Island SC 17 11 17 18 23 -36 122 86
17 Ben Wallis Nathalie Irons Spinnaker SC 21 -27 23 16 24 4 115 88
18 Jake Bullock Dan Bullock Burghfield SC 26 17 22 -30 17 6 118 88
19 Issy Hamilton Sophie Hamilton Burghfield SC -33 24 25 23 13 13 131 98
20 Owen Gibson Katherine Colvin Burghfield SC 15 23 (43 DNF) 32 21 11 145 102
21 Laura Sanders Izzy Duce Thorpe Bay YC 11 30 20 20 22 -33 136 103
22 Alex Kirk Joel Kirk Neyland YC 25 -32 19 19 16 26 137 105
23 Nick Robson Alex Parfitt Chichester YC 23 -38 13 12 28 37 151 113
24 Holly Watson Jordan Watson Hayling Island SC 16 26 15 27 -41 29 154 113
25 Olly Kemp George Simmons Bewl Valley SC 27 22 24 21 -29 19 142 113
26 Hannah Maunder Juliet Price Hayling Island SC 19 15 26 22 34 -39 155 116
27 Robert Palmer Matt Purdon Thorpe Bay YC 20 33 18 -35 31 17 154 119
28 Clare Michelmore Hannah Lane Papercourt SC 31 19 21 25 -36 23 155 119
29 Luke Burywood Ben Dowle Burghfield SC -37 25 30 29 35 9 165 128
30 Samuel Rowell Tom Earl Aldeburgh -36 29 34 28 19 24 170 134
31 Charlotte Alderton Katie Russell Papercourt SC -34 28 28 33 14 34 171 137
32 Eilidh McIntyre Cassia Roberts Hayling Island SC -35 34 27 26 26 32 180 145
33 Josh Cripps Will Harris Papercourt SC 24 12 (43 DNF) DNC 27 41 190 147
34 Hugo Jones-Warner Hugo Tucker Chichester YC & ESC (43 DNF) 21 43 DNF 31 25 30 193 150
35 Jason Bowen Matthew Warren Burghfield SC 29 31 29 24 38 -40 191 151
36 George Gibson Harry Rout Burghfield SC 30 -39 33 34 37 25 198 159
37 William Lowes Kate Sanders Whitstable/Thorpe Bay 28 -40 31 37 32 35 203 163
38 Libby Watkins Abbie Heathcote DSC/WMYC 32 35 32 36 -39 38 212 173
39 Amber Brown Jamie Brown Burghfield SC 38 37 35 (43 DNF) 40 28 221 178
40 Izzy Allerston Eddie Andrews Hayling Island SC 18 36 (43 DSQ) DNC DNC DNC 226 183
41 Morgan Dibb Rachael Bowler Warsash SC 39 41 (43 DNF) DNC 33 27 226 183
42 Milly Stephens Cassie Symes (DNC) DNC DNC DNC 30 31 233 190

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