by Ant Law
RS Elite 2008 UK Nationals, Royal Burnham YC
The RS Elite 2008 UK Nationals were held at the Royal Burnham Yacht Club with 17 Boats from Ireland, Lymington, Hayling Island and Burnham taking part in one of this year's happiest sailing events. The title went to Jonathan Brown crewed by parents Lyn and David in Aeolus (RBYC), closely followed by RS's very own Martin Wadhams with Amanda and local guru Paul Fisk.
Socially the mix of ages and regions would have put the UN to shame, although the cabaret artist was a bit close to the bone! £14,000 was raised for MacMillan Nurses at a lively auction prompted by the fleet's generous sponsors, ELECO, and the final dinner/dance went on into the early hours to the sound of Men Behaving Sadly – guitar and vocalist provided from within the fleet.
Race management was well run by Mike Pearson and his team who have perfected the art of keeping participants in the picture – train operators please note! The racing was held over four days in 10 knots plus of breeze and the competitive standard of the fleet produced tight and exciting racing with different winners each day and six individual teams producing first place results.
Day 1 saw birthday boy Dave Wood and team racing Oink Squeal produce consistent results to leave them leading the fleet after three races and winners of the day's trophy.
Day 2 allowed three more races to be completed and following a disappointment during race one of the event when Aeolus and the Brown family missed an upwind gate, they finished the day in third place overall behind RS Sailing and ET'U, but winners of day two.
Day 3 and a further three races were scheduled and after some 8 hours on the race area the fleet finally completed 9 out of a planned 10 races for the event. This also allowed both discards to kick in and although RS Sailing won the day they were left in overall second place behind Aeolus with all to race for on the final day.
Sadly there was no wind on Day 4 so the competitors slugged it out (literally) on the local golf course while the Championship results were calculated over the nine races. The safety inspection disqualified two competitors after race seven but they took it in good heart and finished the series in the bar.
Jonathan Brown crewed by parents Lyn and David in Aeolus (RBYC) won the event closely followed by RS's very own Martin Wadhams with Amanda and local guru Paul Fisk. Third should have been the team from Lymington, ET'U (Steve Powell) helmed by Buzz Keck with Charlie Merchant and Alex Mathieson; but when the results were reworked overnight eliminating the two 'health and safety' defaulters, local boat Outlaw (RBYC) sailed by Ant Law, wife Sue and Jeremy Tolhurst sneaked into third place.
Next year the party moves to Belfast Lough (and it really will be a party) for the Nationals in June.
RS Elite - Final overall positions
|1||33||Aeolus||Jonathan, David & Lyn Brown||RBYC||14||18||2||1||2||1||3||2||10||3|
|3||21||Outlaw||A Law & P Tolhurst||RBYC||25||4||7||5||7||2||5||12||1||1|
|4||2725||ET'U||(Steve Powell), Buzz Keck, Alex Mathieson, Charlie Merchant||RLYC||26||7||6||4||1||4||2||3||8||6|
|5||48||Oink Squeal||D & F Wood & S & L Wakefield||RBYC/SSC||27||2||3||2||18||12||7||5||4||4|
|6||20||No Riff Raff||Chenevix-Trench/Warren||RBYC||31||1||5||3||12||3||9||10||5||5|
|7||56||Upfront||G Browne/J Ralston/S Robinson||RNIYC||40||11||8||6||4||7||4||4||7||14|
|8||18||Octavia||J & Y James & S Holland Brown||RBYC||47||5||4||7||5||6||8||14||13||12|
|9||26||Swansong||C Barron/ A Martin||HISC||53||8||12||8||10||9||13||7||3||8|
|11||1||Ciao Bella||M Tong & P Wareham||HISC||62||10||10||12||8||18||11||13||2||9|
|12||16||Kiss My ….||Adrian Lower||RBYC||66||12||9||10||9||10||10||6||14||13|
|13||19||Tuppence||J & S Hooper A Gardner||RBYC||68||9||14||11||11||8||15||8||11||10|
|16||23||Matterhorn Jack||Mike Patten||RBYC||126||18||18||18||18||18||18||18||18||18|
|16||38||Bacchanalia||S Herring & J Young||RBYC||126||18||18||18||18||18||18||18||18||18|