2014 International OK Dinghy British National Championship - Day two of the OK Dinghy Nationals dawned with an average wind speed of 25 and gusting 32 knots which prompted a two hour postponement ashore.
The racing got underway at 14:30 with a more steady 25 knots under an incoming tide. Those who started at the pin came out smiling at the windward mark due to increased tide at the left side of the course. Will Turner led the charge with an impressive lead followed by Charlie Cumbley and Jim Hunt. A tight pack behind blasted down the reach and places four, five, six and seven were all within two boat lengths come the very choppy gybe mark. The top 10 remained tight for all of the race considering the freshness of the breeze.
The next drama was to be had on the third lap again at the gybe mark of doom with increased pressure just as Cumbley and Turner arrived. The ‘wind over tide’ in the deepest part of the Blackwater had created a steep chop with just three feet between each wave making the timing of the gybe extremely difficult. They both managed to delay their gybes long enough for the gust to pass but had lost 100 yards or so over Hunt. Many a capsize were to be had here across the 40 boat fleet; Richard Burton being the highest place swimmer who went from eighth to eighteenth in one acrobatic move.
The lead swapped a couple of times and it ended with a photo finish and neither knowing who had won until ashore, but it was Cumbley from Turner. Jim Hunt was a solid third and Jon Fish found an extra yard of pace and just took Andy Couch on the line for fourth.
The second race of the day was cancelled so the fleet look forward to three races tomorrow with an earlier start time which combined with a hard day’s racing today might reduce the beer intake tonight.
Hunt remains the man to beat, extending his lead today but with three different race winners so far and some still finding their feet, everything is still up for grabs.
The OK Dinghy Nationals runs between 16-19th August and is kindly supported by Synergy Marine, Hiking Bench and English Braids. Overall Standings:
1. Jim Hunt - GBR2162 - 6 pt - 2,1,3.
2. Jon Fish - GBR2151 - 11 pt - 1,6,4.
3. Lee Child - GBR2167 - 13 pt - 5,2,6.
4. Robert Deaves - GBR2156 - 15 pt - 3,3,9.
5. Charlie Cumbley - GBR211 - 16 pt - 6,9,1.
6. Terry Curtis - GBR2118 - 16 pt - 4,4,8.
7. Will Turner - GBR2169 - 20 pt - 8,10,2.
8. Andy Couch - GBR2150 - 23 pt - 7,11,5.
9. Tony Woods - GBR2145 - 30 pt - 10,7,13.
10. Tom Lonsdale - GBR2147 - 31 pt - 11,8,12