Postcard from Wales- GBR 420 Nationals, Last day, Final series
by Rob Burn on 14 Aug 2013
Winners are Grinners, Taylor Burn and Henry Gibbs, Team NZL win the British 420 Nationals by a clear margin of 10 points.
GBR 420 Open National Winners - NZL GBR 420 Nationals, Pwllheli, Wales Rob Burn
This was the Final Day of the GBR 420 Nationals in Pwllheli, North Wales. The GBR Nationals were sailed over four days of racing before the Junior European 420 and 470 Champs start next week on the same race track.
Misty rain this morning, a little cool and the promise of more shifty conditions from the same wind direction as yesterday. Not as much wind but still very sailable at 9-11 knots.
Gold Fleet was first start today and all the sailors were keen to get into their work.
Same, same as yesterday for Taylor and Henry, great start, lousy upwind looking for the shifts and getting out of sync completely. Top mark rounding was 22nd and giving us on-water spectators cause to lose more hair.
Downwinds are certainly their strength, climbing up through the fleet and finishing a more than acceptable eighth.
Second race more of the same, great start, 26 around the Top mark ...deep! More hair lost but with hearts in mouths, watched them climb through the fleet again, take out a few Black Flag disqualified sailors out and they finished 11th...still not bad.
The GBR coaches are coming to us now and let us know the points and what their sailors have to do to beat Taylor and Henry. They say it all comes down to the last race.
Race three and the final race, the wind is dropping but hangs in there, still very shifty. Coach Sarah warned the boys that GBR was gunning for them, watch for the Team sailing tactics on the Start Line.
Sure enough, they had the worse Start of the regatta, dead last off the Line, dipping all the boats to head out to the right. The question was asked at the Finish of the race, why was your start so bad? The answer was predictable, the Team sailing tactics paid off but some irony ...... and Karma...crept in. Taylor and Henry were forced out to the side they didn't want, it proved to be the correct side, they rounded the Top Mark in fifth, stayed at the front few of the fleet and finished fourth.
All done, jobs a good'un...give us a tow home, please. Black Tie Dinner and prize giving awaits.
Registration and Measurement for the Junior Europeans starts tomorrow, but a couple of days off the water for our boys. The wakeboard park and Go kart track behind our accommodation looks inviting.
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