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Volvo Noble Marine RS300 National Championships at Porthpean SC - Overall

by Steve Bolland 17 Sep 2019 03:17 PDT

After a difficult day three when, in the only race possible, the wind switched off as the leaders started the second lap, leaving a 30 minute driftathon up the final beat, the fleet was hoping for a more consistent breeze for the final day.

It didn't look good as we headed out in a fickle breeze that switched off altogether causing the start sequence for race eight to be aborted. This did nothing to calm the nerves of those towards the sharp end of the leaderboard. Overnight, only five points covered the first four places with another three competitors with a chance of winning if they had an excellent final day.

As race eight eventually got away in about 8 knots it came with the wind flicking noticeably to the left. Steve Cockerill kept a close eye on his closest rival, Steve Bolland, as the beat progressed and there was a flurry of tacks from them both as they neared the windward mark. Steve C got there first and extended down the run as Steve B got swallowed up by some of the chasing pack. Up the second beat Steve C still covered as Steve B tacked off looking for a large slice of luck on the left. However, those going right pulled through with those going left losing out heavily. This was to have a significant effect on the results overall. At the finish the order was Peter Mackin, Harry McVicar, Steve Cockerill and Steve Sallis.

The wind had gone right by the start of race nine but there was a significant left shift up the first beat. Cheryl Wood was all over this and led the fleet by a distance at the top mark. However, as the race progressed Alistair 'Storky' McLaughlin used his light wind prowess to take the win from Steve Cockerill, Peter Mackin and Steve B.

This made things interesting. With Storky now dropping a 16th place he was right in the frame. However, Cockerill was still holding the whip hand with a four point lead. Places three to five were covered by a single point.

The tenth and final race started on a port-biased line in about seven knots. Storky and Steve C were both showing well up the first beat before the latter had to tack off after being squeezed out by the former. Steve Sallis led from Steve B and Storky at the first mark. Steve C was around sixth. Game on. With Storky moving up to second on the run Steve C had to make a similar move and he did so, starting the final beat in fifth.

The wind went a bit funny on the final beat but at the final windward mark Steve C was still the virtual champion, Storky remaining in second place with Steve C still in fifth but only a couple of lengths from fourth. In a dramatic final twist, Storky took the race lead on the final run and Steve C, despite several attempts, was unable to make it up to fourth. The result? Storky winning on count-back in one of the closest championships for years, with the fight for third place also being decided on countback. Phew!

At the prize-giving Storky thanked the dedicated volunteers of Porthpean SC who had gone above and beyond to make sure that the fleet were welcomed and looked after, from the coming ashore beers on day one to the final cream tea, with everything from pasty deliveries to tin can alley and keeping the Boom of Doom charged with rum in between.

Thanks also to the generous title sponsors, Volvo and Noble Marine and to Rooster, Geeta's and Speedsix for their contributions. The curry night simply wouldn't have been the same without Geeta's Premium Mango Chutney!

Chris Bilkey's photos are available here

In 2020 the RS300s will once again share a Nationals with the RS100s, travelling to SCYC, Abersoch, 17th-20th September 2020 #beatthestork

Overall Results:

PosDivisionSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8R9R10Pts
1stMaster490Alistair MclaughlinPrestwick SC9‑17‑16133151124
2ndMaster339Steve CockerillStokes Bay SC‑6‑85411332524
3rdMaster411Steve BollandBristol Corinthian YC113(OCS)46‑964429
4th 523Harry McVicarDraycote Water SC43‑725552‑7329
5thMaster476Steve SallisHykeham SC27‑143(OCS)4248232
6thYouth556Peter MackinStokes Bay SC‑125‑18522813733
7thMaster544David AcresEmsworth SC5216774‑8(OCS)638
8th 528Paul WatsonBowmoor SC362(OCS)‑11811109857
9th 555Richard Le MareCastle Cove SC846(OCS)121471411(DNF)76
10thMaster393Chris ArnellChristchurch SC‑1512107912‑137121180
11thYouth473Harry KennedyStokes Bay SC‑191515969‑181259.580.5
12thApprentice351Rob FordTattingstone Valley SC10‑139131311‑14969.580.5
13th 313Ben GreenLymington Town SC119812‑17‑171711101290
14th 525Mark CooperBurghfield SC141041010(DNC)6(DNC)DNCDNC100
15thMaster500Pete EllisStewartby Watersports Club714118141516(DNC)(DNC)DNC108
16th 373Richard HargreavesStewartby Watersports Club13111216151612(DNC)(DNC)DNC118
17thApprentice395Ben HeppenstallWhitefriars SC1719(DNC)1416(DNC)10151414119
18th 532Cheryl WoodPennine SC20(DNC)(DNC)17181920131313133
19thMaster422Alastair WoodMedway YC18(DNC)(DNC)11810DNCDNCDNCDNC139
20thMaster450Mark HenmanSouth Shields SC21181715(OCS)1315(DNC)DNCDNC145
21stMaster386Paul BarkerMelldalloch SC161613(DNC)(DNC)DNC19DNCDNCDNC156
22ndApprentice427David CoulsonStewartby Watersports Club(DNF)(DNC)DNC18191821DNCDNCDNC168

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