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Volvo Noble Marine RS400 UK & Irish Nationals at Royal North of Ireland Yacht Club - Day 3

by Matthew Sheahan 28 Aug 02:48 PDT 25-29 August 2019
Nick Craig and Tobytastic Lewis at the Volvo Noble Marine RS400 UK & Irish Nationals © Bradley Quinn

If you gauge value for money at a championships by the number of starts you get, Day 3 was a bumper special.

The day kicked off with a postponement ashore as the race committee waited for the forecasted light southerly gradient breeze to develop. But when the fleet arrived at the course area, the 7-9 knot offshore breeze was causing all kinds of problems for the race officials as the direction danced back and forth along the shore. This was not a day to be a race officer unless you had an aptitude for nailing jelly to the wall.

Setting a square line was almost as tricky, but the real problem was encouraging the fleet to stay behind it before the gun. Even a blag flag didn't appear to be a big enough stick.

The result was four abandoned starts and a list of 11 boats on the naughty step. Among those forced to sit out the first race while they thought about what they had done were plenty of the big dogs, including Nick Craig and Toby Lewis (1500). Among the others keeping them company in the sin bin were Mark Oakey and Ben Robertson (1463) and Mike Simms and Jack Holden (1488).

When the fleet finally got away for the first race of the day the breeze had built to the point that everyone was hiking hard off the line. But as the pack approached the top mark under the shoreline, the breeze fluctuated wildly in strength and direction and performed the first of several shuffles of the pack.

By the finish it was Stephen and Sarah Cockerill (1489) who took the win, Barry McCartin and Andrew Penny (1264) took second and Robert Espey and Richard McCulloch (1006) in third.

By the start of the second race the breeze had gone against the forecast and dropped slightly leaving those that cared about such things scrambling around in their effort to change rig settings.

The direction was also still running back and forth along the shore making it difficult to predict which side of the course would pay. Many felt that a set of dice would have been more useful in predicting what would happen next rather than a strong opinion based on sketchy evidence, yet a look at the results suggested that the big guns had it sussed once again as Craig/Lewis (1500) delivered another of their now familiar wins.

But according to Nick the victory had been anything but easy. "We ended up on the wrong side of the first beat and rounded the top mark in 20th," he said. "Gradually we managed to chip away at this through the rest of the race but only took the win on the last gybe into the finish. It was a real needle match behind between Mike Simms (1488) and David Jessop (1004)."

As a plan for how to succeed after a duff first leg this was clearly the kind of strategy that many of us further down the pack had in mind but failed to deliver. But it always sounds easier when described by a winner.

Despite being the bad boys of the day, at least to start with, Craig and Lewis (1500) have been able to discard their BFD and extended their leading margin with a total of just 8 points. The Cockerills (1489) remain in second with 20 points, as Dave Exley and Mark Lunn (1460) muscle their way into third with 36 points.

Behind them the points are much closer with plenty of evidence of a full on scrap to come.

Results after Day 3:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubC'shipDivisionFleetR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
1st1500Nick CraigTobytastic LewisFrensham/BurghfieldOpenStandardGold1312(BFD)18
2nd1489Stephen CockerillSarah CockerillStokes Bay SCOpenMasterGold31‑1071820
3rd1460Dave ExleyMark LunnLeigh & Lowton SCOpenMasterGold84‑12114936
4th1006Robert EspeyRichard McCulloughBallyholme YCIRLStandardGold5162133‑1839
5th1264Barry McCartinAndrew PenneyRoyal St George YC/CSBCIRLStandardGold1696(RET)2639
6th1377Sean ClearyAnnalise NixonOxford SCOpenStandardGold‑1479107740
7th1463Mark OakeyBen RobertsonItchenor SCOpenStandardGold62445(BFD)544
8th1488Mike SimsJack HoldenCarsington SC/Arun YCOpenStandardGold221354(BFD)246
9th1481Howard FarbrotherLouise HoskenQMSCOpenMasterGold‑48820191250
10th1436Chris PenneyJessica RutherfordCarrickfergus SC/Holywood YCIRLStandardGold7102565‑2753
11th1189Steve RestallChris StubbsDowns SCOpenMasterGold‑40227381656
12th1407Hamish GledhillAndy DawsonWest Riding SCOpenStandardGold176314(BFD)1757
13th1376Oliver LoughheadTiffany BrienRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLStandardGold235132313‑3877
14th1406Paul McLaughlinOwen Mc KinleyCushendall SCIRLStandardGold2621515(BFD)2179
15th1363Ross RyanOliver Ryan‑MooreNotts County SCOpenMasterSilver2020‑2718121181
16th1004David JessopJohn McKelvieQMSC/SLYC/SchnellwurstOpenStandardGold12143419(BFD)382
17th1405Liam DonnellyRick Mc CaigRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLGrand MasterGold1518141724‑2688
18th1438Ross VaughanAndrew VaughanRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLStandardSilver282821‑3461093
19th874Jon GayAmanda HendersonLochaber SCOpenStandardGold441588(BFD)2297
20th1188Stephen McLernonRyan WilsonCushendall/Carrickfergus SCIRLStandardSilver33111728(BFD)14103
21st875Jacob AinsworthKayleigh RobertsSouth Shields SCOpenStandardSilver2112‑31202130104
22nd877Ryan GlynnKatie KaneBallyholme YCIRLStandardSilver24‑4211311129106
23rd1452Govan BerridgeDavid ColemanKillaloe SCIRLStandardSilver421283920‑45112
24th1484Mark SomervilleJoe RobertsBassenthwaite SCOpenStandardGold‑363622161028112
25th1140Robert O'SullivanPhilip McGladeMBSCIRLStandardSilver18‑4624241634116
26th1383Joe ScurrahPhil RobinsonCarsington SCOpenStandardSilver103523‑431535118
27th1439Kevin PodgerHeather ChipperfieldLymington Town SCOpenGrand MasterGold3134‑35121923119
28th1429Neil BevingtonAlan SkeensLee on Solent SCOpenMasterGold‑452729301419119
29th1353Robert HastingsRory HigginsRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLStandardSilver38(DSQ)1929334123
30th741Mikey FergusonPhilip AdamsBallyholme YCIRLStandardGold3223‑36272915126
31st888Hammy BakerBarry SwanstonQYC/SLYCIRLStandardGold293116‑322231129
32nd1467Paul RidgwayBronwyn RidgwayLeigh & Lowton SCOpenGrand MasterGold‑41333292333130
33rd1292Christopher EamesNiall EamesSLYCIRLStandardGold9‑3837331736132
34th815Trevor D'ArcyAlan McClernonCarrickfergus SCIRLStandardSilver1330‑50212840132
35th1339Peter KennedyStephen KaneRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLMasterGold2391822(DNC)DNC136
36th1465Ben WilliamsonJon WillarsWelton SCOpenStandardSilver27252626(BFD)32136
37th1124Robert YeamansNadia YeamansAberdeen & StonehavenOpenStandardGold4719‑48251837146
38th1001Woo KearneyNick ThallonRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLStandardSilver2517433736(DNC)158
39th1345John HobsonRebecca OgdenNotts County SCOpenMasterSilver3726413627‑42167
40th1501Ken TwemlowGoizeder Aspe JuaristiNotts County SCOpenGrand MasterBronze1944394525(RET)172
41st1435Matt SheahanEllie SheahanNetley SCOpenMasterSilver11‑4544423839174
42nd1487Andy BrayAngela CarterLee on Solent SCOpenMasterBronze49‑5049402613177
43rd1440Simon HutchinsonBen WilliamsRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLStandardSilver42434235(BFD)20182
44th1379Neil StrainJohn FergusonRoyal North of Ireland YCIRLMasterBronze35‑5146483024183
45th1178Brian HolmesWendy SmythColeraine YCIRLStandardBronze463233‑473443188
46th1029John CunninghamNicola CokayneCarsington SCOpenGrand MasterBronze3029(OCS)51BFD25190
47th1152Mike JacotRebecca AllenMount Batten Sailing CentreOpenStandardBronze‑534030383951198
48th1432James AlsopSimon EdwardsQMSCOpenStandardBronze503738‑523146202
49th840Neil CalvinRoger PerrotCarrickfergus SCIRLStandardSilver3447‑51493749216
50th1319Vicki ThurstonJenny DouglasDalgety Bay SCOpenStandardBronze‑544152413547216
51st1445Phil BrittonMike AtkinsonDalgety Bay SCOpenMasterBronze525240‑533241217
52nd1359Mike UptonTrisha ClancyStarcross YCOpenStandardBronze43‑5345464044218
53rd1430Simon MathewsPenny MathewsLancing SCOpenGrand MasterBronze3948474442‑50220
54th824Jack DaviesPeter DaviesLee on Solent SCOpenStandardBronze5149‑53504148239

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