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Horning Sailing Club Regatta Week 2019

by Holly Hancock 10 Aug 2019 07:44 PDT 3-9 August 2019

Horning Sailing Club's annual Regatta Weekend began on Saturday 3rd August with racing on Hoveton Little Broad. Some thirty plus boats took to the water over the weekend, including River Cruisers, Reedlings, Yeomans, Rebels, Yare & Bures and an assortment of dinghies.

With the Broad so busy, there was plenty of action. The winds were also noticeable over the weekend for being mainly light and shifty, meaning that large advantages could be gained or lost on each lap. Saturday afternoon saw racing begin with the Reedlings, with Robert Hancock sailing Siskin pulling out an early lead to win the first race, before an incident on the second race forced his retirement on the final leg just before the finish, allowing the race to be won by Derek Jones sailing Merlin. Geoff Stubbs started strongly in the Yeomans with two wins, whilst Toby Fields had temporarily defected from the Yeoman Fleet to helm a Rebel and consequently win a race, the other won by Amanda Barnes sailing Rebel Jade. The Yare & Bures were also split, with a race each won by Alastair Fields (Rosy Wave) and Ron Jackson (Holly Blue). The first dinghy race was won by Edward Wildman sailing his Laser, and the second by Ellie Edwards sailing a Splash, whilst Abbey Penny won in the Allcomers C class sailing her Topper. First cruiser on handicap was Mike Reilly sailing Cygnet.

Back at the Clubhouse the Pursuit Race was run - it being third time lucky after it had been postponed twice previously due to the weather. It was sailed for in a variety of boats, from Toppers - which started first, through to Yare & Bures, a Yeoman, a Rebel, Reedlings and a Laser. After almost an hour's racing, only around 30 seconds separated the first three finishers, Robert Hancock's Reedling Siskin crossing the line first, followed closely by Kim West's Rebel, then Alastair Fields's Yare & Bure.

On Sunday, the winds had picked up a little but were still changeable, providing challenging, and at times, frustrating sailing conditions. In the Yeomans, Geoff Stubbs recovered from taking the wrong course in the morning race and moving from first to last, to regain first place again and take a clean sweep of all five races. The largest fleet of the day was the Rebels, with seven competing, and the races seeing lots of close competition and swapping of places. The morning race was won by the eldest sailor on the water, Club President Alex Humphries sailing Lucky Rebel, whilst Doug Noble and Peter Brown sailing Rebel Rothay won the later races respectively. Clive Gardner won two of the YBOD races in Hairstreak, whilst the other was won by Liz Goodyear sailing Chalkhill Blue.

Two of the Allcomers B races were won by Jo Edwards sailing an Enterprise, one race just one second ahead of the Enterprise of Jack Copping, whilst the remaining race was won by Jo's daughter Ellie sailing her Splash. The morning cruiser race was won by Peter Goshawk sailing Swallow, whilst the afternoon race was won by George Brewis helming Amantani. James Street and Abbey Penny battled it out in the Toppers, with just a few seconds separating their finishes - with two races going to James, and one to Abbey. The Single-handed Enterprise races were closely contended by usual crew and helm team Jack Copping and Thomas Wildman, who on this occasion each helmed and proved closely matched, ultimately winning a race each.

Monday 5th August saw the start of the 2019 Horning Regatta Week, which began with a good breeze that steadily increased throughout the morning. The early dinghy races saw a variety of craft take to the water, from Lasers to Optimists who enjoyed sailing in the conditions, providing a colourful spectacle for all those watching. For some, it was their first time racing, so it provided both an exciting but nerve-wracking challenge for the young sailors.

As the first main series of the day got away, the winds had picked up, and it became a very busy river with boats sailing on the stretch outside the Clubhouse up to the corner. Some used these conditions to their advantage, particularly in the ten strong Yeoman fleet, where lead boats Geoff Stubbs in Tara and Ezra Bailey in Amethyst were able to break away from the fleet to finish a considerable margin ahead of the others. Geoff was able to follow this up with another win and a second place later in the day, with the lunchtime Allcomers A race won by Roger Hannant sailing Firefly, also receiving a second and third during the course of the day.

In the other fleets racing remained relatively close, particularly in the large Topper fleet - where James Street, Abbey Penny and Hamish Harmer battled it out for line honours, each winning at least one race in the day, and all three making up the top three spots in every race. Ron Jackson won both Yare & Bure class races sailing Holly Blue, whilst Peter Brown in Rebel Rothay achieved the same feat in the Rebels, finishing just half a boat length ahead of Kim West in the afternoon series.

The first Cruiser race was won by Paul Howes sailing Melinda, whilst the second was won by George Brewis in Amantani. Toby Fields sailing Tiderip won the Production Cruiser race. Over the lunchtime period some very dark clouds made their way over Horning, bringing with them torrential rain which gave everyone a soaking. As the clouds cleared providing warm sunshine, this also brought an increase in wind, which became quite lively during the afternoon race, before dropping off to very light - all in the same race.

By the evening Allcomers Officers Race, the wind had dropped to provide a pleasant breeze, and was sailed for in a Rebel, Yeoman and three Reedlings - with the Rebel and Yeoman over the line at the start, this gave the Reedlings an opportunity to get away. Robert Hancock in Siskin made the most of the chance, finishing first over the water and on handicap. The race for the Allcomers First Trophy was won by Oscar Norris sailing a Fireball.

It was a bright and breezy start for Tuesday's racing at Horning, with plenty of action from the very first race. With the line run by Snowflake Sailing Club, some twenty-four dinghies sailed the early morning races across four fleets in lively conditions, with numerous capsizes keeping the rescue crews busy as the competitors sailed a beat up river, with a run back down. The first Allcomers B race was won by Jack Barnham sailing his Splash, who would go on to win a second race during the day, with Oscar Norris in a Laser Radial second. The Topper Gold fleet was won by William Woolston, whilst the Silver fleet was won by Zia Gittins.

The later races were won by Hamish Harmer, and Jamie Logsdon who had two wins. The Optimist fleet was won by Oliver Smith. As the main series of the day began, the winds were picking up to provide exciting racing - the second Allcomers B fleet saw ten dinghies compete, with Ellie Edwards winning in her Splash. Eleven Yeomans revelled in the challenging conditions, with two retiring during the course of the race. First was Geoff Stubbs in Tara, Roger Hannant in Firefly second, and Paul Clarke sailing Two C' Sons third, with the second Yeoman class race seeing the first two positions reversed. The other fleets decided to reef or use smaller rigs to cope with the increasingly breezy weather, which were also accompanied by torrential rain later in the day.

Both Yare & Bure class races were won by Ron Jackson sailing Holly Blue, whilst the Rebels saw the morning won by Kevin Edwards in Rebel Maid, the afternoon won by Kim West in Rebel. Both Reedling races were won by Stuart Bailey sailing Jaws. The lunchtime cruiser race was won by Paul Howes sailing Melinda, ahead of Peter Goshawk's Swallow, with Peter Taylor's Mayfly third. The afternoon mixed Cruiser fleet saw some confusion as to whether there was one start or two, with some starting in the wrong fleet. Eventually it was won by Melinda helmed by Paul Howes, for the second time during the day's racing. The evening Allcomers Junior race saw just 45 seconds separating all the finishers on handicap, with Preston Childerhouse winning in a Laser Radial, just ahead of Abbey Penny sailing her Topper, whilst the Miras Tankards were won by Edward Wildman and Jack Barnham sailing a Fireball.

Wednesday was another breezy and blustery day at Horning Sailing Club, for the third day of the Club's annual Regatta Week. Characterised by gusty, changeable conditions, it was another challenging day for competitors. Jack Copping had a promising start in the Allcomers B fleet with a win in his Enterprise, ahead of Toby Pearce sailing his Laser, who, did well to make it to the front of the fleet, having started the length of the river behind the other competitors. Toby followed this up with a win in the fleet later in the day. Hamish Harmer won the Topper Gold Fleet whilst Charlie Gould achieved the same in the Silver Fleet.

The afternoon Topper races were both won by Jamie Logsdon, with Jasper Richardson second. Given the unfavourable forecast, many helms opted to leave reefs in from Tuesday's sailing - these were needed as the winds picked up during the morning series and over lunch, forcing several retirements. It also meant that racing was often close, particularly in the dinghies, Yare & Bure and Reedling fleets, where less than a boat length separated the first two finishers, just one second in the case of the afternoon Reedling race, Stuart Bailey in Jaws a fraction ahead of Kevin Saunders's Cockatrice. The Rebel class races were both won by Peter Brown in Rebel Rothay, whilst the Mixed One Designs race was won by Kim West in Rebel.

The morning Yare & Bure race was won by Ron Jackson in Holly Blue, just ahead of Clive Gardner in Hairstreak, whilst the afternoon's was won by Liz Goodyear in Chalkhill Blue. In the Yeoman fleet the battle between Roger Hannant's Firefly and Geoff Stubbs's Tara continued, the first race won by Firefly, whilst the lunchtime Allcomers A race saw this order reversed. The lunchtime cruiser race saw nine Cruisers come to the start line in two starts, eventually won by Peter Taylor in Mayfly after the race leader missed the shortened course signal, whilst the Production Cruiser race was won by James Bloomfield in Tiderip.

During the afternoon series the wind dropped dramatically, leaving some competitors (still reefed) sailing backwards for a short period, before gradually picking up again for the final races of the day. The Braithwaite Cup for Services & Ex-Services was won by Ron Jackson in Holly Blue, whilst the Allcomers Junior race for the Junior Trophy (helm under 18) was hotly contended for by six Toppers, a Laser and a Rebel. It was won by Toby Pearce sailing Rebel, ahead of Jamie Logsdon second, and Hamish Harmer third (both sailing Toppers), with less than one minute separating the entire fleet.

Thursday of Horning Week signifies the Horning Town Open Regatta or - as it's more colloquially known - "Spoon Day", where competitors not only sail for trophies but for silver spoons. In complete contrast to the previous three days the winds started light and remained this way throughout the day - during the lunchtime race the river resembled a millpond! With turnouts the best of the week, it was good to see some familiar faces back on the water, including Hugh Tusting in the Yare & Bures, Dick Angier and Paul Clarke in the Yeomans, Derek Gibbs in a Reedling and Ken Davies in the Rebels who, encapsulating the true spirit of Horning, took with him a cup of tea and sandwich onboard to enjoy during the race! It was also good to see a number of visiting sailors, including from NBYC and Oulton Broad, one sailor practising a somewhat untimely man overboard drill with their crew on the river from their 470.

Many single race trophies were sailed for, mostly during the morning series, including the YBOD Bath White Trophy won by Toby Pearce in Moon Moth, the Rebel Lion Trophy won by Joe Brown in Rebel Rascal, the Ranworth Salver won by Jack Copping in Timshel, with the Cockshoot Salver won by Hamish Harmer in Crazy Days. The Onyx Trophy for Reedlings was won by Robert Hancock in Siskin, the Landamore Open Regatta Trophy for the Yeoman morning race was won by Roger Hannant in Firefly, with Paul Clarke in Two C' Sons second. In extremely lights winds the Watermans Race for those employed in the boating industry was sailed for at lunchtime, won by Ellie Edwards in her Splash - beating a Fireball, Yeoman and White Boat over the water, with the Crystal Salver for Cruisers won by Paul Howes helming Melinda.

The Second Horning Challenge Cup for the fastest overall during the lunchtime series was won by Jack Copping in his Enterprise. Busy both on and off the water, it was also President's Day, where Regatta President Anne Wagstaff laid on a reception enjoyed by all. During the afternoon series the wind swung around 180 degrees, meaning that competitors sailed upriver on a beat, only to beat back downriver later in the same race.

The evening Water Babies race, which sees under 18s helm Keelboats crewed by under 21s, as always saw a good turnout, with young sailors taking control of Yeomans, Rebels, Yare & Bures and a Reedling. After Jack Barnham, crewed by Izzy Barham-Brown, pulled out an early lead in Rebel H, he was overtaken by Toby Pearce and Jack Copping in Yare & Bure Scarce Copper, but both were overhauled by Edward Wildman and Oscar Norris in Rebel Rascal, who would eventually go on to win both the Water Babies Second Challenge Cup and the Richard Page Memorial Trophy, just 8 seconds separating Rebel Rascal and Scarce Copper on handicap.

Friday saw an unfavourable forecast, meaning that it was questionable as to whether racing would be able to take place at all, but the morning started relatively calm, although numbers on the water were somewhat diminished (perhaps due in part to the disco the previous evening!). A win in the Reedling morning race secured the series Flight Trophy for Stuart Bailey in Jaws, whilst Kim West won both Rebel races and the Hermes Trophy overall. It was a good day for Toby Pearce, winning two Laser races, and also for Jamie Logsdon with two wins in her Topper, taking the Partridge Trophy and Mike Evans Coronation Medal for her efforts. Roger Hannant, with two wins in the Yeomans, won the Yeoman Trophy overall and the Judith Paris Trophy.

As the winds increased, numbers of entrants starting decreased during the day, with the afternoon cruiser race reduced to two entries, the race being won by George Brewis in Amantani. Gusting 35 mph by the afternoon, this particularly caused chaos in the dinghy fleet, with plenty of capsizes and an Enterprise centreboard becoming casualty to the conditions. By the evening junior dinghy race it was down to three entries in the increasingly blustery winds - eventually won by Jamie Logsdon in her Topper ahead of Edward Wildman, who came second in his Laser, and Preston Childerhouse third in his Topper, and the final boat to finish, receiving the traditional cannon firing to signify the end of the Regatta Week. At the end of Horning Week, overall it had been extremely close racing all week with a good spread of trophy winners, no one sailor dominant.

All had sailed well during the week in challenging winds, but special mention must go to the fleet of young Topper sailors who went out in all conditions, amazing everyone with their resilience, camaraderie and determination, and keeping smiling despite numerous capsizes.

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