Weston 14 Open - Fleet braves blustery conditions
by Julian Pearson on 17 May 2013
A fleet of six boats braved the very blustery conditions to attend the Weston 14 Open. In Saturday’s first race a battle developed between Roger Gilbert, Dan Holman and Julian Pearson at the front of the fleet, these three managed to hold on and avoid swims in the conditions which saw gusts reaching 30knots.
2013 Weston 14 Open i14 - International 14 http://www.international14.org/
After a fast and furious race with some brilliant rides downwind Roger won followed by Dan and the Julian who was lucky to beat Andy Penman after a capsize at the bottom of the last run.
The second race of the day ended as a bit of a war of attrition with only Dan and Roger completing. Dan Port tacked the fleet and took a massive lead until capsizing and letting Roger get his second win.
Sunday racing started much lighter with some big shifts on the course. Dan split with the fleet off to the right on the first beat and rounded the top mark with a small lead over Roger followed by Dave Edge. On the next run the wind built to 15-20 knots where it stayed for the rest of the day. At the leeward mark Dan still had the lead but capsized and broke his kicker forcing a retirement. For the rest of the race Roger had a reasonable lead being chased by Julian who had made it through the fleet to second And Penman was third.
Second race Sunday was again a windy one, for the first lap Roger Dan and Julian where all very close, with the three boats almost overlapped at the first leeward mark. Dan’s jib sheet then broke causing a capsize leaving Roger and Julian to fight it out. It was very close with Julian having a bit more speed up wind and managing to take the lead a couple of times only to lose it again. In the end Roger finally won winning him the event with a race to spare, Julian was second and Andy third.
Roger sat out the last race leaving Julian to sail round for an easy win with Dave in second.
Thanks must go to Weston SC for organising the event and all the safety boat crew who did a great job over the weekend.
1st Roger Gilbert and Adam Brushett
2nd Julian Pearson and Nick Martin
3rd Dave Edge and Martin Arnison