Gale force southeasterly winds ensured that no-one ventured out into the boiling seas that featured in St Aubin’s Bay for the first two days of Jersey’s combined clubs’ Brewin Dolphin Jersey Regatta. Held over 5 to 7 September, this was an inauspicious start to the tenth anniversary of this leading event in the Channel Islands calendar.
The situation looked bleak enough at the welcoming reception, held last Thursday in the RCIYC club-house, with all met forecasts promising stay-at-home weather for the foreseeable future, this did not dampen spirits however and the ensuing social programme lived up to everyone’s expectations. With little hope that the weather would improve, sailors were determined to enjoy the other diversions on offer.
Sadly, winds gusting to over forty knots caused last minute cancellations in respect of boats coming from both the UK and Guernsey as well as deterring a number of French entries. Despite this, Louise Morton’s Quarter Tonner, Espada, and Chris Williams’ Impala, Trudi, from Chichester were welcome arrivals, the former having arrived by ferry and the latter cheating the weather by arriving the weekend before. Thursday evening saw the arrival of two regular attendees, Loic Gourio’s First 435 Malouine and Jacques Morvan’s Sun Legende 41 Moustique, after a fast five hour run from St Quay-Portrieux.
However, as the weekend wore on glimmers of hope began to emerge with the promise of winds veering and moderating to something that might save the day. Having postponed racing on both Friday and Saturday, the race committee issued its ultimate amendment with a revised schedule for Sunday, starting at the scheduled time of 0930 hours. Encouragingly, winds veered towards the end of Saturday afternoon and by Sunday morning had gone to the northwest and dropped to force 5 to 6. With the race area now in the lee of the Island the game was on! Accordingly, racing got under way mid-morning with the cruiser/racer classes racing to the south of a still less than calm St Aubin’s Bay whilst the dinghy and sport-catamaran classes stayed in the choppy but calmer waters close to the beach.
As in previous years, race officer Ken Le Marquand and his team, running the cruiser classes, enjoyed the luxury of Jersey Harbours’ tug, the Duke of Normandy, whilst the dinghy and sport-catamaran classes team, under race officer Bill Harris, were installed on Bob Bryant’s somewhat more mobile Mitchell, Taurimina.
With three back-to-back races scheduled for each class, crews were promised a lively time in the brisk conditions. Whilst capsizes in the dinghy and sport-catamaran classes kept the guard boats relatively busy, the stiff breeze produced exhilarating, if challenging, sailing overall. Conditions were, perhaps, even more challenging for the cruiser classes, racing further out of the shelter of the land, and a number of breakages led to several boats retiring and not an inconsiderable amount of broaching as crews fought to control wayward spinnakers.
Louise Morton, sailing Espada, had a clean sweep in the Quarter Ton class with Paul Treliving’s Odd Job second in all three races. Jeff Speller’s 2Farr clinched third overall, just one point clear of Julian Barber’s Super Q (previously owned by Louise). Sadly, Peter Crabb’s Jackflash was forced to retire having been dismasted during the first race.
The Archambault A35, Abracadabra, skippered by Mike de Figueiredo, swept the board in IRC Class 1 with Alex Ohlsson’s J92S, Jaya, pipping David Jones’ First 34.7, Jackana, by just one point to take second.
Similarly, Steve Pearl’s X-79, Less Expense took all three races convincingly in IRC Class 2 with visitor Chris Williams’ Impala, Trudi, picking up second overall, one point clear of Kevin Holden’s UFO27, Matchless. An impressive performance by a visiting boat. Two French boats, regular attendees at the Jersey Regatta, featured well in the Jersey Handicap cruiser class with Jacques Morvan & Patrick Carcaillet’s Sun Legende 41 beating off Loic Gourio’s First 435 Malouine to win races one and two to take first overall by just one point. Nathan Turner’s Egythene 24, Van Diemen, won the third race to give her third overall.
Malcolm Annan’s Jamesina won both races in the traditional dayboat class from Mike Harrison’s Jigsaw the only other competitor, the older boats having remained in the safe confines of the harbour.
The Island’s Hobie 16 fleet, sailing in the Sport-catamaran class, provided its customary great splash of colour in the Bay. An OCS in the first race cost Gordon Burgis and Ken Snell, sailing Pure Energy, the overall top slot but they went on to win the remaining two races. Grant Neale and Karen Larose, sailing iCAT, won the first and with two seconds to their name completed racing with five points against Pure Energy’s nine. Luc Richard and Thomas Harris, sailing TBA, were third.
Martin Speller, sailing the Laser Radial Liquid Logic, won all three races in the ‘fast’ Open Dinghy class with Simon Le Huray and Leo Scholfield, both sailing Radials, second and third respectively.
The first two places overall in the ‘slow’ Open Dinghy class went to Optimists. Elizabeth Ellison sailing Whatever! took the first race and two second places, giving her the overall top spot. With a first and two thirds, Alex Harrison took second place from Kate Amy, sailing her Laser 4.7, Fickle Treacle, Kate having won the last race.
Sailing his Optimist Funky Fly, tragedy struck Laurence Carter whilst leading in the first race. The boom snapped when twenty metres from the finish line leaving him to nurse the boat upwind in 20 knots of breeze to cross the line but not before being narrowly overtaken by Whatever!
Although the bad weather had a great impact on this year’s Regatta, the combination of a very successful social programme and excellent racing on Sunday saved the day, providing a fitting conclusion to this most important event. Brewin Dolphin Jersey Regatta - Leading results
Class 1 - IRC Cruiser/racer
Race 1 - Dyce Trophy - Abracadabra – M de Figueiredo
Race 2 - Ken Budden Trophy - Abracadabra - M de Figueiredo
Race 3 - Commodore’s Cup - Abracadabra - M de Figueiredo
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class - Abracadabra
Class 2 - IRC Cruiser/racer
Race 1 – Mallard Cup – Less Expense – S Pearl
Race 2 – Nautilus Trophy - Less Expense – S Pearl
Race 3 – Tregear Cup - Less Expense – S Pearl
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class – Les Expense
Class 3 - Jersey Handicap Cruiser/racer
Race 1 – Moustique – J Morvan
Race 2 – Moustique – P Carcaillet
Race 3 – Bolitho Urn – N Turner
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class - Moustique
Quarter Ton Class
Race 1 – Espada – L Morton
Race 2 – Espada – L Morton
Race 3 - Espada – L Morton
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class - Espada
Class 4 - Dayboat
Race 1 – 2nd Elfin Cup – Jamesina – M Annan
Race 2 – Wings Trophy – Jamesina – M Annan
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class - Jamesina
Class 5 - Sport-Catamaran
Race 1 – Ratner Trophy – iCAT - G Neale
Race 2 – Gaiety Bowl – Pure Energy - G Burgis
Race 3 – Caprice Salver – Pure Energy - G Burgis
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class - iCAT
Class 7 – Open Dinghy (Handicap1.17 or under)
Race 1 – Benson & Hedges Transom – Liquid Logic - M Speller
Race 2 – Howard Trophy – Liquid Logic - M Speller
Race 3 – Canadian Club Trophy – Liquid Logic - M Speller
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class – Liquid Logic
Class 8 – Open Dinghy (Handicap >1.17)
Race 1 – RCIYC Shield – Whatever! – E Ellison
Race 2 – Nick Orchard Trophy – Knot a Clew – A Harrison
Race 3 – Enterprise Trophy – K Amy
Brewin Dolphin Best-in-Class – Whatever!
Detailed results may be found in the clubs and on www.shyc.je
Brewin Dolphin, is the largest independent private client portfolio manager in the UK. Its Group Executive Chairman, Mr Jamie Matheson and his wife Angela, joined the Lieutenant-Governor of Jersey, His Excellency Lt-G