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Bermuda International Race Week - Dickinson and Young top Comet Class

by Colin Thompson on 24 Apr 2012
Stevie Dickinson and Patricia Young won the Comet Class with four bullets and one throw-out race in Bacardi’s 2012 Bermuda International Race Week Talbot Wilson - Copyright
Bermuda International Invitational Race Week 2012, presented by Bacardi in Bermuda's Great Sound, is organised by Royal Bermuda Yacht Club and is being held from the 22nd to 27th April.

The dynamic duo of Stevie Dickinson and Patricia Young captured the first piece of silverware up for grabs yesterday. And they did so in dominant fashion, posting four successive bullets in ideal sailing conditions to clinch the five-race Comet Class series with a race to spare.

'We were very, very fast going to weather, offwind and all the way around the course,' Dickinson said.

The veteran sailor managed solid starts in all of the races and was able to put considerable distance between himself and the chasing pack.'We opened up very comfortable leads in each race and in all it was a very good day,' he said.
Dickinson was denied a fifth straight victory when he capsized in the last race gybing on the final leeward run to the finish. But by then the title was already in the bag. 'I was leading the race and decided I wanted to gybe and all day I wasn’t comfortable gybing in the boat,' Dickinson said. 'Thank God my swim came on the last run.'

Winds on the sound started out of the SSE at 12kts and built to 18+ in the afternoon, a sunny sailing day in Bermuda.

There were no further results provided on the Comet fleet by press time last night. Pre-race favourite, Rudy Bailey, did not compete in the Comets after encountering difficulty finding a crew.

Also competing on the Bravo Course yesterday was the Laser Class.

Provisional results show former World Sunfish Champion Malcolm Smith leading the Laser fleet after five races. Smith managed four bullets and a third to set the early pace in the 16-race series which will switch to the Alpha Course when racing resumes.

'It was hard work and good breeze out there,' the local sailor said. 'It was also quite shifty so you really had to pay attention to the shifts.'

Setting the early pace in the Etchells fleet after four races is Bermuda’s Tim Patton who reeled off three successive bullets and a second.

'We had a good day and I want to give all the credit to Peter Martin and Hal Kempe who are sailing with me,' Patton said. 'It was a tough day and there was a lot of funny angles out there, and they did a great job helping me to get through all those funny angles. It was a very one-sided race course, but you couldn’t just go to that one side. You had to pick the right angles to get across and they helped me do that in a great, great way.'

Two-time World Champion John Burnham leads the International One Design (IOD) fleet by a solitary point over nearest rival Giles Peckham after four races on the Alpha Course. Burnham laid down an early marker after posting two bullets and two seconds.

Bermuda’s Penny Simmons, who had three top five finishes on the day, currently sits in third in the IOD fleet.

Due to unsuitable weather — 30kts with gusts to 40 and rain predicted — Race Week organisers have postponed Monday’s scheduled racing in the Great Sound. Conditions should improve by race time Tuesday. Wednesday was scheduled as a spare and will be used to replace the lost Bermuda International Race Week website
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