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Volvo Noble Marine RS300 UK National Championships at Porthpean Sailing Club - Runners and Riders

by Paul Watson 31 Aug 2019 07:15 PDT 12-15 September 2019
RS300 Nationals day 2 at the RS Games © Alex & David Irwin /

With the Volvo Noble Marine RS300 Nationals at Porthpean fast approaching - and the fleet either training, polishing or hydrating in preparation - it's time to place your bets on this year's runners and riders.

The Safe Bet (Former Champions)

With three previous champions racing this year competition for the top step is going to hotter than ever.

Steve Bolland will be hoping to retain his title and, having shown the fleet the way round in Weymouth last year in all but one race, will be favourite to do it again assuming he has put the practice in again this year.

Dave Acres and Steve Cockerill will be both working hard to get their names back on the trophy. Dave has proven consistently quick over the last few years, whilst I don't think anyone would bet against Steve C having some idea of how to make the boat go fast. We'll all be hoping his time sailing a RS400 has slowed his reactions down a bit...

The Outside Bet

Current traveller series leader Harry McVicar will be looking to make his mark on the big event. Harry has won every 300 event he has entered this year and will be looking to do the same again. Fast in lighter winds and consistent when the breeze picks up.

Other sailors hoping for a slightly lighter wind event will be Alistair 'Storky' Mclaughlin and Steve Sallis. Both lightweights who have the ability to show the fleet round the course in sub 10knts. Could it be their year?

Amongst those hoping not will be Paul Watson and Richard Le Mare, both of whom prefer a bit of breeze to help them round. Having finished second and fourth respectively last year both will be aiming for a podium spot.

The Risky Bet

With the 300 being the sort of boat that rewards hard work and punishes complacency there is always space for an upset at any of the events.

Peter Mackin will be hoping the colour scheme on his brand-new boat goes unnoticed at the start. Mark Cooper has been busy putting the hours in at the gym in the hope that working on his fitness will make up for time away from the boat half way round the world. Both of whom have made appearances at the front of the fleet in the past.

Someone else who has been working hard is Richard Hargreaves, unfortunately for Richard he has been busy brewing beer for the Inlands in October rather than spending time in the boat. Although, along with his Stewartby stablemates of Pete Ellis and David Coulson, he will be fighting it out with the boats from Stokes Bay (Cockrill, Mackin and Harry Kennedy) for the Team Trophy

As for the rest of the fleet, well everyone's a winner sailing a 300... There is still the opportunity for more to enter and a few loan boats available should anyone else fancy their chances!

With prizes kindly supplied by Volvo, Noble Marine, Rooster Sailing and SpeedSix, drinks and treats provided on return to shore each day and some great socials lined up it is looking to be a cracking event!

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