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Merlin Rocket De May Series at Hampton Sailing Club

by Livvy Bell 8 Oct 05:27 PDT 2 October 2021
Merlin Rocket vintage racing in the De May Series at Hampton © Emily Bunner/Nicky Page/Deirdre Bell

Ten boats were entered for the Hampton Vintage Merlin Open and De May final despite the forecast for heavy winds and a lot of rain. The race officer took the sensible decision to run two races back-to-back before the wind was due to pick up.

Race 1 started with a gentle breeze and the fleet headed up the first beat leaving behind John & Livvy Bell, who had lost their rudder on the start line. Rob & Hatty Cage managed to make a clean break from the fleet after the first mark, leaving the rest of the fleet to battle it out. John & Livvy managed to catch up to fourth however, but due to more gear failure, dropped back down the fleet. Phil Dalby & Sophie Penwarden and Simon Girven & Richard Parslow were battling it out for second and third using some local knowledge to pull away from the chasing fleet.

Rob & Hatty went on to win the race, followed by John & Livvy who managed to sneak up on the pack with Phil & Sophie in third.

After all boats had finished, the race officer promptly started the second race. However, the fleet were a little too keen and the race officer had to general recall.

Unfortunately for John & Livvy, it was déjà vu at the start as they were stuck on the start line buoy whilst the rest of the fleet sailed off, hugging the Hampton bank, and making their way towards the windward mark. Rob & Hatty took an early lead only to be pipped at the post by Andy Harris & Matt Key. Phil & Sophie were consistent again with a third followed by Simon & Richard who just managed to take over the recovering John & Livvy before the finish leaving them in fourth and fifth.

After a delicious lunch the race officer was keen to get the last race under way. There were three boats in contention to win the event, John & Livvy, Andy & Matt, and Rob & Hatty all tight on points.

The third race brought a gentle breeze with a couple of big gusts keeping the competitors on their toes. Andy & Matt and Simon & Richard battled it out at the front with a lot of position changes close to the finish line. Andy & Matt took the last race win as well as the event hotly pursued by Miles Palmer & Anna Aylward who took second followed by Simon & Richard in third.

After tea and cake, Andy Harris & Matt Key were crowned Hampton Vintage winners with Rob & Hatty in second and Phil & Sophie Penwarden in third.

Hampton held their annual curry and rum evening Saturday night, leaving a few sore heads the following day for the Hampton Silver Tiller and Thames Series final when the modern boats began to arrive.

Overall Results:

PosSail noHelmCrewClub R1R2R3Pts
13088Andy HarrisMatty KeyTamesis Sailing Club5112
21692Rob CageHatty CageThames Sailing Club1243
31761Phil DalbySophie PenwardenHampton Sailing Club3386
41201John BellLivvy BellHampton Sailing Club2567
51631Simon GirvenRichard ParslowHampton Sailing Club4437
62151Miles PalmerAnna AylwardThames Sailing Club7628
73347Hywel PerkinsLucy PenwardenHampton Sailing Club810513
81493Richard PageAndy DalbyHampton Sailing Club67913
9578Stuart JenkinsNicola ScaddanHampton Sailing Club108715
101765James WarrenBen PeerlessHampton Sailing Club991018

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