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Zhik 2021 New Season LEADERBOARD

Solid Solo victory for Dobson at the Datchet Flyer

by Andy Rice 11 Dec 2020 03:02 PST 5-6 December 2020
The Datchet Flyer - Seldén SailJuice Winter Series opener © Tim Olin /

Ian Dobson came out on top last weekend at the Datchet Flyer, which opened this season's Seldén SailJuice Winter Series with a record turnout of 134 boats and 188 sailors competing across the two days.

Two bullets gave Dobson, a past Winter Series champion, victory on Singlehanders Sunday, with two other Solos - Fraser Hayden and Patrick Overs - respectively taking second and third in the light and extremely chilly conditions.

The milder and breezier Saturday was for the doublehanders and it was reigning Seldén SailJuice Winter Series champions, Simon Horsfield and Katie Burridge, who powered their 2000 to victory on the day with scores of 1,2.5,1. Finishing behind the 2000 was the 505 of Roger Gilbert and Ben McGrane who won one race but had to discard the first due to equipment problems. Otherwise the European Champions might have run the 2000 close for the overall doublehanded win. In third place was the GP14 of Andy Smith and Phil Hodgkins.

After all the setbacks due to Covid restrictions this year, the turnout was impressive. It could have been even bigger but for the fact that some sailors couldn't retrieve their boats from sailing clubs in Tier 3 areas of the country. Even so the 188 sailors that did make it to Datchet came from 70 sailing clubs and competed in 42 different classes, with an age range from 12 to 80 years.

Although they never met on the water, the two fleets were combined into an overall ranking using SailRacer's GPS tracking data to provide a course correction factor for each race (course handicap). This led to Dobson winning overall ahead of Horsfield and Burridge with Gilbert and McGrane's 505 in third.

Virtual has been the watchword of all preparations for the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series, including the virtual prize-giving on Facebook on the Tuesday evening, and which has drawn over 2000 views already:

There was even a virtual protest between a 420 and Osprey, so hard times are proving that old practices can be modified to fit our new situation.

There were three classes with 10+ boats: 420, Topper and RS Aero 7, along with a growing number of youth and juniors, not least the first time competitors in the Series from the Greig City Academy.

Winners in other categories

  • Craftinsure Family Rankings
    Team George lead, with Harry and James George now sailing in different boats

  • Top Lady
    505 Penny Clark

  • Top Junior
    Megan Farrer 420

  • Top Youth
    Alice Davis 420

  • SpeedSix Challenge
    Tom Morris RS800
    Ben Clegg Musto Skiff

  • Corrected
    Hugo Valentine Topper

  • Trident Top Club (best 2 results)

  • RestartSailing Top Class (best 2 results)

Datchet Flyer results can be found here.

Datchet show what can be achieved

DWSC showed a 'can do attitude' to make the event a success, with a lot of Covid-secure measures put in place, eg:

  • Online briefing
  • DWSC helpers at gate to direct people to rigging area, split to maximise social distancing
  • No registration - all sail number and other changes notified online
  • Collect your named tracker to indicate you are on-site
  • Scoring queries and protested submitted online
Next event in the Series is Burghfield Brass Monkey 27th. Entries open on 17th December after the latest Covid Tiers have been announced.

Get on board for the Burghfield Brass Monkey

Next event in the Series is Burghfield Brass Monkey 27th. Entries open on 17th December after the latest Covid Tiers have been announced. Entry invites will be selected and allocated from those on the pre-registration list

Cancellation of the Grafham Grand Prix

Sadly one of the upcoming rounds of the Series has been cancelled. Here's a statement from Grafham Water Sailing Club:

It is with deep regret we have to announce that GGP40, scheduled for 3rd January 2021 is to be cancelled. The recent Government announcements surrounding the five day relaxation of COVID19 restrictions around Christmas also recommends that people limit personal contact for a two week period after the 27th December. We have concluded that hosting GGP40 at Grafham so soon after these relaxed restrictions, would not be a safe environment for either visitors, members, volunteers or staff.

We are sure this will be a great disappointment to all those planning to attend but hope you will all look forward to a coming to Grafham for our special 40th anniversary Grand Prix as part of the next Selden Sailjuice Winter Series in 2021/2.

The Events

The following events are in the Seldén SailJuice Winter Series 2020/21:

  • Datchet Flyer, Datchet Water Sailing Club 5 & 6 December 2020

  • Burghfield Brass Monkey, Burghfield Sailing Club 27 December 2020

  • CANCELLED - Grafham Grand Prix, Grafham Water SC 3 January 2021

  • CANCELLED - Bloody Mary, Queen Mary Sailing Club 9 January 2021

  • King George Gallop, King George Sailing Club 23 January 2021

  • John Merricks Tiger Trophy, Rutland Sailing Club 6 & 7 February 2021

  • Oxford Blue, Oxford Sailing Club 13 February 2021

  • RESCHEDULED - Fernhurst Books Draycote Dash, Draycote Water SC 6 & 7 March 2021
You can find out more about the Series at

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