Please select your home edition
Selden 2020 - LEADERBOARD

Bembridge Illusion Trafalgar Trophy 2021 & Guy Fawkes Trophy 2021

by Mike Samuelson 24 Oct 23:16 PDT 23-24 October 2021

Mid-morning Saturday, Chimet was recording 0 knots so on the face of it things were not looking too good for the Trafalgar Trophy that this year was programmed for just 4 races on Saturday afternoon. However, thanks to the internet, the experts found the forecast S/SW'erly breeze moving up the channel and hopefully reaching Bembridge around midday.

Given that there was no shortage of water (big Springs), the decision was therefore taken to delay launching for half an hour and to then race outside the harbour off Silver Beach.

A good decision! By about a quarter to one, there was a nice F2/3 SW'erly for the twenty two Illusions to start racing. The first start saw a number of boats OCS and with vision to the pin end blanked, the ROs had no option but to signal a General Recall.

Saturday Race 1 - first start

The second start saw Flag U displayed as the preparatory and a clean start. Fortunately for Mark Downer who had been delayed as he was attending a Sailing Committee meeting, the delay allowed him to join in the race mid-fleet.

Saturday Race 1 - second start

Ed Peel, Justin Biddle and Bruce Huber were the front runners and going into the third round, Ed had a safe lead, however about 50 metres from the windward mark he lost his steering and had to watch the fleet overtake him while he sorted it out. This left Justin and Bruce neck and neck as they headed to the line on the short leg from the leeward gate. Justin was just ahead but unaware that Bruce was close behind and able to make the line close to the Committee Boat, tacked to cries of 'protest'. After reviewing the incident in the bar afterwards he subsequently retired! This left Bruce in first, Alastair Speare-Cole in second and Colin Simonds in third.

With Flag U displayed for all the remaining starts, the second race got away first time with Raymond Simonds first to round the windward mark with Bruce and Colin initially not far behind, however as the race progressed, he built up a substantial lead and finished well ahead. Mike Toogood had a good race and finished fourth just ahead of Ed and Justin who crossed the line inches apart.

Saturday Race 2 start

With the breeze backing more southerly and increasing slightly to 12 knots or so, the third race was delayed a bit while the course was re-set. After a clean start the front runners were Mark Downer and Ed Peel and although the leeward gate was in place when they reached it on the first round, the port buoy went walk about soon afterwards which caught out some of those trying to round it!

Saturday Race 3 start

When recovered it transpired that the central pole had parted company just under the float so it was not a simple fix. To avoid further confusion everyone was told to round the remaining mark to port. Although there was not much in it, Ed crossed the finish line ahead of Mark with David Peerless coming through to take third ahead of Raymond and Justin.

With the breeze holding steady but increasing a couple of knots, the fourth and final race saw some very close racing.

Saturday Race 4 start

Mike Toogood was the early leader but was overwhelmed by the Huber, Downer, Peel and Raymond Simonds juggernaught as the race progressed! With the finish at the windward mark after thee and a half rounds, it was touch and go as to whether Bruce or Mark was going to win but as the windward boat, Bruce was just able to get his bows in front at the pin end of the line.

After an excellent afternoon's racing the overall winner was Bruce (5 points); Ed was second (9 points), Raymond was third (9 points) and Mark was fourth (also 9 points)!

Trafalgar Trophy 2021 Results:

PosHelmSail NoR1R2R3R4Pts
1Bruce Huber10122515
2Ed Peel161215139
3Raymond Simonds16571449
4Mark Downer16457229
5Mike Toogood142849517
6Colin Simonds13843141219
7Alastair Speare‑Cole1353138819
8Justin Biddle85R65920
9David Peerless14010831321
10Caroline Simonds389107723
11Owen Pay105618121028
12Philip Russell153141115631
13John Raymond1511212111435
14Sam Christie1492217101138
15Serena Gosling1221116131740
16Mike Issiais1521615161647
17John Birchenough37209192148
18Laura Watson1301914172050
19Andrew Eddy271519181851
20Matt Solan1311822201553
21Charles Glanville156132122S56
22Olly Laughton‑Scott801720211956
23Penny Stanley22R23232268

Conditions at midday on Sunday were looking very promising with mostly sunny periods and a nice F3 Southerly breeze. Perfect for the twenty or so (a few joined late) Illusions competing for the one day Guy Fawkes Trophy. With the course set in a similar location off Silver Beach to the previous day, the first start (under P) eventually got away about twenty minutes late and save for Raymond Simonds who had to come back after being pinged as OCS, was pretty good.

Sunday Start of Race 1

Colin Simonds was first round the windward mark hotly pursued by Bruce Huber, Ed Peel and Mark Downer. After cries of 'protest' by Bruce as he and Colin closed on the Committee Boat to complete the first round, Colin dropped back having taken a penalty. Bruce led over the second round but Mark, Ed and Raymond managed to get ahead by the end of the third round. Mid-fleet, Mike Issiais and Serena Gosling were so close that they were scored =11th.

The second start was called 'clear' although there was lot of shouting from the pin end of the line!

Sunday Start of Race 2

With the fleet well spread on split tacks on the beats, it was Raymond who lead the way ahead of Mark and Bruce. With black clouds forming over Brading and keen to get four races completed, the Race Officers decided (much to Raymond's delight) to stop the race after 2 rounds!

With the rain holding off, the third race reverted back to being a three rounder. After a close start and Owen Pay probably right to have circled back, Mark rounded the windward mark ahead of Raymond, Bruce and Ed, but they were all close so any could have crossed the finish line in front. However, having changed places with Mark at least twice, Bruce pulled ahead on the third long beat and finished comfortably ahead.

Sunday Start of Race 3

Going into the fourth and final race and with black clouds still looking ominous and the breeze picking up to 18 knots at times, it was decided to start under Flag U so as to reduce the risk of a General Recall.

Sunday Start of Race 4

Probably not surprisingly it was Mark and Bruce who led the way; indeed as the race progressed and after Ed had retired with a halyard problem, they established a substantial lead. Nip and tuck all the way, it could have gone either way, but as they closed the finish at the windward mark after three and a half rounds, it was Bruce who was inches ahead. Although some way behind the front two, Alastair Speare-Cole and Mike Toogood took third and fourth.

Another excellent afternoon's racing with Bruce Huber picking up his second trophy of the weekend beating Mark Downer on a count back. Raymond Simmonds was third.

Guy Fawkes Trophy 2021 Results:

PosHelmSail NoR1R2R3R4Pts
1Bruce Huber10143115
2Mark Downer16412225
3Raymond Simonds16531357
4Ed Peel161244R10
5Mike Toogood142655414
6Alastair Speare‑Cole1355910317
7Justin Biddle85976R22
8David Peerless14071371125
8Colin Simonds13881011725
10Caroline Simonds3810148826
11Owen Pay105S814527
12Mike Issiais152111215629
13Andy Christie14913612S31
14Serena Gosling12211R91232
15Andrew Eddy271519131442
16Simon Birchenough136151113S44
17John Birchenough371616R1446
18Richard Ambler156S17R1049
19Monty Irwin1471415RS51
20Anna Row130171817R52
21Ben Stoddart‑Stones 12S2018S60

No racing next weekend as the tides are wrong. It is the postponed 2020-2021 Nationals the following one (6th & 7th November).

Additional Photos at

Related Articles

Making the world smaller
They used to say any publicity is good publicity They used to say any publicity is good publicity, but that has been severely tested in recent times by celebrities and sportspeople who wish they were anywhere but the limelight when things go pear shaped. Posted on 30 Nov
Illusion Team Racing at Bembridge
A full house of eight teams take part Although it was a full house of eight teams of two Illusions per team for this year's inter Club Team Racing, the field arguably lacked some of the previous winners; that said there was some very close racing. Posted on 22 Nov
Illusion National Championship at Bembridge
A superb turnout of 34 helms for the event on the Isle of Wight We were locked down earlier in the year when the 2020-2021 Nationals had originally been programmed, so rather than not hold them at all, the decision was made to hold them over the weekend of 6th & 7th November. Posted on 8 Nov
Bembridge Illusion Picnic Hamper & Invitational
October sunshine and a fickle breeze in the harbour After the strong NE breeze earlier in the week, the forecast for the first weekend of the Bembridge Illusion fleet's 2021-2022 winter season looked much more promising with a steady F2/3 NE'erly and bright sunshine. Posted on 11 Oct
Final 2020-21 weekend for the Bembridge Illusions
St George's Day, Woodford Long Distance Race and Bill's Barrel Saturday, the penultimate day of racing of the 2020-2021 Illusion season was a frustrating one! The forecast was for light cyclonic conditions and that was exactly what was delivered! Posted on 3 May
Bembridge Illusion Stratton Memorial Trophy
Another excellent turnout for the penultimate weekend's racing Another excellent turnout for the penultimate weekend's racing for the Bembridge Illusion fleet with 24 boats on Saturday and 22 on Sunday, and that was without the Downers or some of the other regular helms! Posted on 26 Apr
Bembridge Illusion Prince Philip Memorial Trophy
A four race no discard regatta sailed on Sunday afternoon As the tides on Saturday did not allow racing to be moved to the morning, the decision was made to cancel the afternoon racing as a mark of respect to HRH The Duke of Edinburgh. Posted on 19 Apr
Bembridge Illusion Spring Plate 2021
Another good turnout for the Island-based helms Another good turnout for the weekend's Spring Plate especially as it was again restricted to Island helms only to be on the safe side particularly shore side. Posted on 12 Apr
Explore. Dream. Discover.
The Easter weekend was a time to get on the water around the globe for many The Easter weekend was a time to get on the water around the globe for many. Lockdown restrictions in the UK have eased somewhat, allowing the return of grassroots sports, and the fine weather resulted in sailors heading to their local clubs. Posted on 6 Apr
Bembridge Illusion Easter Egg Cup 2021
Great to be able to get back on the water again! Although entry was restricted to Island sailors only and we used a RIB as the Committee boat rather than Sea Breeze, it was great to be able to get back on the water again. Posted on 5 Apr
Hella Dual Colour Floodlights - 728 x 90px - 002 gif BottomC-Tech 2021 (Spars-QFX Racer) 728x90 BOTTOMSOUTHERN-SPARS-OFFICIAL-SUPPLIER-52-SS728-X-90 Bottom