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Noble Allen 2018 International Moth UK Championship at Thorpe Bay - Day 1

by Mark Jardine 11 Jul 11:55 PDT 11-14 July 2018

A day of snakes and ladders... but mostly snakes

Wednesday was hard going for the 36-strong UK Moth Nationals fleet in Thorpe Bay. A very shifty and patchy wind from the North, combined with pockets of weed strewn across the race course, made staying on the foils difficult to say the least.

The first race set the tone for the day, with Mike Lennon leading around the top mark, extending to nearly a leg ahead when approaching the leeward mark of the second lap, only to drop off the foils and watch his advantage evaporate.

Another top sailor who was caught out on multiple occasions was Simon Hiscocks, who commented, "It was tricky as the wind was pretty unstable and added to the wind was a lot of weed, to give an extra dimension to the randomness of the day. It was challenging!

"I found my way from the front to the pack on several occasions, but there were some people putting consistent results in like Jason Belben, Jim McMillan and David Kenefick."

When asked what it was that was making the difference and how the leaders were missing the weed, Simon replied, "Luck!" with a laugh.

Consistency was the key, and Jason Belben was the one to make the best of the conditions and the day, notching up a 2,3,1 score-line, where only five sailors managed three top ten results. Jason commented, "I was sailing for the pressure all the time, trying to keep my head in the right place. It was up and down like snakes and ladders, so when the wind was down you just had to try and keep going and hope it came good for you at the end, which most of the time it seemed to today. There was also a bit of luck involved I would have thought.

"I was changing controls all the time, trying to keep the power on. When it went light, and I came off the foils, I was then just searching for the next bit of breeze to get up and going again."

On the psychology involved when huge leads are gained and lost inside a leg Jason said, "You've just got to put it out of your mind and keep going as anything can happen. It was very stressful, so I think I need a lie down now to be honest!"

"It's definitely an event where the consistency will count. I think Dave (Kenefick) did particularly well as he's quite a big guy, whereas I'm quite small so good in these conditions anyway."

Some big names struggled in the conditions, including last year's runner-up David Hivey who seemed to find every patch of weed on the race course, purposefully capsizing nine times on a single run to clear his foils.

A weary bunch of Moth sailors are now enjoying the hospitality of Thorpe Bay Yacht Club, watching the tennis as a warm-up for the England vs. Croatia football semi-final.

The forecast for Thursday is promising with sunshine and a good chance of a sea breeze.

A huge thank you to the sponsors of the event – title sponsors Allen Sailing and Noble Marine as well as WetsuitOutlet.co.uk, Maguire Boats and ShockSailing.com who have provided support for the daily pasta and beer for sailors coming off the water.

Results after Day 1:

PosSail NoHelmR1R2R3Pts
14509Jason Belben2316
24533Jim McMillan41510
34148Dave Kenefick19212
44409Ross Harvey82414
54525Ben Clegg57315
64501Dan Ellis115622
74584Mike Lennon3111024
84386Simon Hiscocks134825
94149Eddie Bridle1212933
104136Ed Redfearn6141434
113980Alex Adams16101137
124534Jason Russell1881743
134544Mathew Lea10211344
144492Nic Streatfeild7182045
154541Jeremy Hartley14161545
164442Kyle Stoneham21151248
178Dan Ward96DNC52
1843Alistair Kissane15132957
194542David Hivey17172862
204208Tom Lambert24201862
213799Max Stelzl22251663
224101Andrew Sim27191965
234139Neil O'Toole20232366
244104George Boussoulas23222469
254328Alex Ringstadt25282174
264484David Jassop28242274
274036Chris Clarke19273177
284548Tom OfferDNCDNC781
293169Brad Gibson29262782
303870Eddie Gatehouse31322588
314479Adrian Coatsworth32302688
323995Charlie Coulborn30313394
334096Mark DickerDNC293096
344554David Smithwhite2635DNC98
353629Thomas Mehew33333298
364241Ian Keely343434102

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