by OK Dinghy UK
16 OKs turned out for the Northern Championships hosted in the Pennine Hills by Glossop Sailing Club.
3oks5 - OK Dinghy Winter Championship
The first three races on the Saturday were held in bright Spring sunshine and a reasonably consistent force 2. In the first race Tony Woods showed he meant business on his own water, sailing up the right hand side and consistently picking the shifts to open up a big lead, closely followed by Ben Steel, the only junior in the fleet. Nick Craig picked up well from a bad first beat, getting past Keith Byers (fourth) and Gavin Waldron (third) but couldn't catch Tony. Ben was OCS.
In the second race Nick Craig and Andy Turner arrived at the windward mark together and had a good tussle all the way round. Eventually Tony Woods arrived on the scene and managed an overlap on Andy at the last mark to finish second to Nick's race win.
In the third race there was no stopping Nick who sailed off into the distance with Tony finishing second and Neil Goodhead sailing very consistently to finish third and Gavin fourth. Mary Reddyhoff showed what can be done with a cut down sail to finish seventh in this race (juniors take note).
Day 2 dawned cold, wet and windy with white horses scudding down the reservoir. By the time we started the wind had abated somewhat but the drizzle kept coming. Simon Davis had turned up with his new North sail and promptly showed us all how to do it, although he was eventually overhauled in Race 4 by Nick, Tony and Neil Goodhead showing a good turn of speed so early in the season. Further back Chris Perry, a recruit from the Laser fleet, Martin Bower and Roland Gadsby all showed excellent boat speed at times, but need to look for greater consistency and better starts.
The last two races were held either side of lunch with Nick winning both, Dave Cooper and Gavin both testing the water temperature and Simon Davis surrendering a race win in Race 6 as Nick just got an overlap at the last mark.
Many thanks to all those competitors who travelled a long way to attend the event, particularly Brian Quayle from the Isle of Man and Marry Reddyhoff from the south coast.
Many thanks to Tony Woods for organising everything, including overnight accommodation, and to Glossop Sailing club for a great weekend.