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Noble Marine Streaker National Championship at Carsington Sailing Club

by Veronica Falat 7 Jul 2018 00:01 PDT 29 June - 1 July 2018
Noble Marine Streaker Nationals at Carsington © Karen Langton

Under brilliant blue skies, this year's Noble Marine Streaker National Championships was held at Carsington Sailing Club in Derbyshire from Friday 29th June to Sunday 1st July. 35 boats took part, including 2 from Scotland.

Although the breeze was light for the training on the day before, all three days of racing featured winds from 10 knots, predominantly from the north-east, with plenty of shifts and, especially on the Saturday, some much stronger gusts. The race team did an excellent job of course setting in the shifty conditions.

Tom Gillard first won the Streaker Nationals back in 2010. Since then he has only been beaten to the trophy once and for most of this time his main rival has been Ian Jones, who was runner-up last year. True to form, this year's event immediately carried on from where last year's battle left off with Gillard and Jones in top form, plus several others ready to prove themselves. In the last 12 months some really good sailors have joined the fleet and the competition was bound to be hot.

Race 1 saw Jones leading at the first windward mark while Gillard was a few places back. Veronica Falat was in 2nd place for most of the first lap but Gillard was soon fighting for the lead with Jones and these two had their own private battle until Gillard got clear and took the win. Behind them, Phil Manning made some big gains and squeezed past Falat to take 3rd place.

Race 2 was a more straightforward affair for Gillard who sailed off into the distance on the first beat. Ian Priest, sailing the newest boat in the fleet, followed along in 2nd, while Jones had to fight off a bunch of five or six other boats to take 3rd. Therefore, with two wins under his belt, Gillard came ashore on Friday with a 3-points lead.

On Saturday morning two races were sailed in a breeze that became increasingly gusty and unstable. There were some alarming moments when the breeze seemed to switch off suddenly and capsizes to windward caused grief to a few and great amusement to others! In Race 3 Jones took the lead early on and stayed ahead to the finish. Gillard came in 4th, behind Martin Penty and Phil Manning. This meant that Gillard and Jones were now equal on points. Game on!

In Race 4 a group of four boats got clear and had a high-speed race which finished with Gillard 1st, Jones 2nd, Isaac Marsh 3rd and Manning 4th. The fleet then came ashore for lunch and a bit of a rest! The breeze had been veering during the morning and so the course was re-set as a triangle-sausage course because the wind direction wasn't allowing enough space for the trapezoid we had used until then. Race 5 was the windiest race of the weekend and Isaac Marsh made the most of it, charging off into the lead for a good win with Manning 2nd and Gillard 3rd while Jones was back in 7th.

After five races the discard kicked in and so Gillard ended the day on 6 points to Jones's 8. However, Race 6 on Sunday morning had all the ingredients to make it a frustrating experience for Gillard and to leave the Championship wide open again. The breeze was lighter than the day before but just as shifty. For the only time in the event there was a general recall plus a slight delay as the windward mark was re-set. When the race eventually got going, Jones and Falat worked the right-hand side of the beat and, along with Mark Langston, were the leaders at the first mark. Jones then caught a good gust on the first reach which shot him off into the distance while everyone else sat there watching! Falat held on to 2nd place for a lap or two but Marsh and Gillard caught her up. For a while it looked like Gillard might get through to 2nd place but on the final beat he ran out of favourable shifts (in fact ran out of breeze completely!) while Falat regained 2nd and Marsh took 3rd and these were the finishing positions. Jones was now right back in with a chance of winning the championship. With just one race to go, he had a 1 point lead.

Everything now depended on Race 7 – and Gillard made no mistakes. At the start, he held Jones to windward of the committee boat. When the gun went Gillard could accelerate away but Jones couldn't. The leaders on the first beat were a bunch of boats that had started at the port end of the line; first round the windward mark were Ian Priest, Debbie Degge and Lucy Priest. Gillard rounded in 4th and then picked off the boats ahead during the next couple of laps, to eventually finish the race with a good lead. Jones meanwhile had recovered from being back in the teens for much of the race but his 7th place wasn't enough to help his cause. Tom Gillard was the championship winner again!

Although the shifty wind had made for tricky conditions, it also meant the racing was very tight and exciting. There was plenty of place changing in each race and you couldn't relax on any leg of the course. The hot sunny weather and the sparkling water added to the occasion and really this Championship was a load of fun.

The Streaker class would like to thank Noble Marine Insurance, the main sponsors of the event, plus North Sails for some extra prizes. The Championship is also part of the Rooster Super Series and so thanks go to Rooster Sailing for their prizes too. Ian Jones now leads the Super Series with Doug Horner and Phil Manning tied on points for 2nd place.

Overall Results:
If you finished in the top ten at the Streaker nationals then enter your Gear Guide information here

PosFleetSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7Pts
1stGold1951Thomas GillardSheffield Viking SC11413-5111
2ndGold1759Ian JonesDovestone SC2312-71716
3rdGold1995Isaac MarshNorthampton SC55-8313320
4thGold1942Phil ManningDelph SC3-133427928
5thGold2106Ian PriestScaling Dam SC62710-234231
6thGold1982Martin PentyBeaver SC-12425461031
7thGold1940Doug HornerSwanage SC965-12612846
8thGold2102Duncan McDonaldNewhaven & Seaford SC7896810-1248
9thGold1923Lawrence CreaserHayling Island(DNC)116111011453
10thGold1881Steve BlackburnWest Lancs YC8713814(BFD)555
11thGold1972Veronica FalatWaveney & Oulton Broad412-30151521159
12thGold1985James DawesRedditch SC-3091299191573
13th 1696Andrew RawsonWeston SC161710145-221375
14thSilver1957Debbie DeggeBartley SC1916-3416139679
15thSilver1977Neil FirthBanbury SC-221418711171885
16thSilver1920Mark LangstonBeccles Amateur SC151014-231782387
17thGold1817Ian BradleyOuse Amateur SC10-27192012141994
18thGold1887Paul GraceChipstead112011221821(OCS)103
19thSilver1933Lucy PriestScaling Dam SC13251619-311516104
20thGold1703Jon AldhousBeaver SC-26191713191620104
21stSilver1953Alex ReindorpChipstead21-241521162014107
22ndSilver1844Chris SmithIsland Barn Reservoir SC2415-2517212417118
23rdSilver1864Emma GraysonBeaver SC14(RET)2624241321122
24thSilver1716Paul NobleEast Lothian YC201821252618-29128
25thSilver1970Richard EaglandRipon SC17212326-282322132
26thSilver1912Robert CockingDelph SC-28232427202526145
27thSilver1902Chris AbelaWest Oxfordshire SC183027302226-32153
28thSilver1731Elaine RossAnnandale SC232228-33252930157
29thGold1681Rupert SmithNewhaven & Seaford SC32292018(DNC)DNCDNC171
30thSilver1808Peter HeyesWhitstable YC27322232(DNC)3327173
31stSilver1870Peter AngwinBurghfield SC253129-35293128173
32ndSilver1568Jonathan BlankleyBeccles Amateur SC2926(RET)31RET2725174
33rdSilver1929Peter WithringtonBurghfield SC(DNC)DNC3329302824180
34thSilver1968Tim CraigElton SC31283228(RET)3231182
35thSilver1905Phil HalldronDowns SC333331-34273033187

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