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Vaikobi 2021 Boots - LEADERBOARD

Vaikobi Cadet Class Spring Championships for the Peter Scott Trophy at Pevensey Bay Sailing Club

by Neil Collingridge 27 Apr 06:10 PDT 23-24 April 2022

The UK National Cadet Class were given a real treat at Pevensey Bay over the weekend of 23/24th April for the second event from which the team to contest the World Championships in Melbourne Australia will be decided.

Forecasts in the week leading to the event looked decidedly difficult with strong North Easterlies in prospect which would likely cause difficult launch and recovery but the Sailing Club and organising committee held their nerve as predictions ebbed and flowed as the week progressed. Arriving at high tide on Friday afternoon didn't help confidence - the shore break gets bigger as the tide comes up the steeper top section of the beach - but with a similar wind on Saturday morning driving the waves onto a flatter (and sandier) beach things looked up somewhat. It was still blowing dogs off chains so clearly not for the feint hearted but possible all the same.

After a relatively short postponement things looked to be moderating a touch and so the decision was taken to go. This was a Herculean effort by sailors, parents, race committee, club volunteers and the like as each Cadet needed lifting through the surf to get it off the beach. Rescue crews (like me!) found that if their wet weather gear wasn't fully in place by the time of the first wave hitting it was going to be a cold wet afternoon afloat.

It was really encouraging to see virtually all the sailors - which included a Regatta fleet of 10 entries - making it afloat to give it a go. This was full on sea sailing and something we don't get to experience all that often. Inevitably as the day went on the attrition rate was high but the waves to surf on were to die for and a number of parents were rather wishing they were out in their own dinghies enjoying the challenge.

Race one kicked off with Ines Green and Tom Krailing leading up the beat into quite a steep chop but chased hard by Toby Bush and Kemmel Thorogood on catch up duty having returned at the start - wind against tide. Having overhauled Ines and Tom, they shot around the course at speed with the chasing pack doing their best, but ultimately failing, to play catch up. Quite a number were deciding not to fly spinnakers although that seemed to make them less stable in the waves until Mish Collingridge and Monty Hampton flew theirs down the last run to storm into second place briefly before taking a swim whilst gybing - so more stable in a straight line perhaps but less stable through the corners we concluded! This left Will Shepherd and Joe Mycroft to pip Ines and Tom for second and third places respectively. First Silver fleet boat was Lulu Mayhew and Henry Camm (8th in the main fleet) followed by Zach Windibank and Mave Parry-Shields (12th). Quite a number of boats had retired but still the coach assisted Regatta Fleet raced on and they did so well - 3 finishing out of 8 starters but heaps of experience gained by all. Many congratulations to Ned Fairhurst and Samuel English who took the win followed by Monty Slump and Immy Sherwood and Elliott Chapman and Gregory Boddy.

With the wind in the mid twenties (knots) and quite a number of retirees, the race committee sensibly took the decision to call things a day and send everyone ashore although it's a mark of the resilience that many of those sailors still upright would have happily stayed out for more.

So only one race completed on Saturday but, with a slightly better forecast for Sunday, you might have thought that with 4 races in prospect everyone would take things easy.....hell no! After the challenges of returning through the surf there were games organised by Pevensey Bay SC - volleyball, football, you name it, to keep everyone entertained whilst parents tucked into a barbecue and kept the bar staff busy.

A few aching limbs (sailors) and fuzzy heads (parents) then for the early start on Sunday - committee boat and rescue crews docking out of Sovereign Harbour at 9am sharp and Arky the class race officer with that determined look on his face that told those of us who knew him well that he was game on to make a serious series of the weekend. 4 races followed....WOW, just WOW! what fantastic sailing conditions. Unblemished sunshine from start to finish and waves which built as the day progressed and gave awesome surfing conditions.

So on to race two. 15 to 18 knots of breeze, just slightly to the left of Saturday's Northeasterly and the last of the ebb tide keeping the race track reasonably flat. Gold fleet saw Ines and Tom pull out a big lead on Ed Fletcher and Alex Enkel with Mish and Monty sailing through to bag third. First and second in Silver fleet were Zach and Mave (11th) followed by Amelie Whitehouse and Maddy Sherwood (13th) and in the Regatta fleet Alex McEwan and Amber Giumali took the win from Jemima McMorris and Harriet Davies in second. Kudos to Oscar Bush and Emily Krailing who, encouraged by the coach boat, popped their spinnaker up whilst leading comfortably only to go for a little dip. They were the only regatta fleet boat to get the kite out of the bag all day but will have learnt from it all the same.

Race three and the tide was on the turn - the waves were going to get bigger and judging the start and the lay lines was going to become more and more important. A close tussle at the front of the fleet saw Mish and Monty take the lead after hauling in Amelia Mayhew and Hettie Thorogood who had initially pulled out a big lead on lap 1. Toby and Kemmel were also on a charge and these three boats came down the final round with barely a fag paper between them - one surfing ahead of the others on a wave only to be caught seconds later by whoever got the best surf on the next one. At the finish Mish/Monty in first followed by Toby/Kemmel and then Amelia/Hettie. First in Silver fleet were Gwen Thorogood and Primrose Denny-Pickess (10th) with Amelie and Maddy next (11th). And in Regatta fleet Oscar and Emily judiciously kept their kite in the bag this time to take the win from Elliott and Gregory and Alex and Amber.

A bit of course rejigging for the wind shifting right and a general recall for the main fleet and we were away for race four. Toby and Kemmel were back at the front, neck and neck with Mish and Monty until a tactical error down the reach put the latter back into the chasing pack. These two finished in that order with Ines and Tom in third. Silver fleet again was taken by Gwen and Primrose (9th) followed by Zach and Mave (12th); two boats now establishing a good track record of finishing up the order and ahead of a number of the Gold fleet. In Regatta fleet it was good to see two "pondies" from South Cerney avoiding the pitfalls of a strong tide to not overlay the windward mark and so take the leading two positions. Josh Davidson and Will Hancock first and Jemima and Harriet second. Third, and stringing together a consistent series, were Alex and Amber.

Radio transmissions to the beach followed - "how's the surf?"... "You've got another hour and a half max until things get difficult came the reply". And so despite it being tough sailing it was on to race 5. The vast majority of the sailors seemed to be wearing Cheshire Cat smiles irrespective of whether they'd tested the water temperature already - probably given the amount of spray about it made little difference to your temperature if you'd fallen in or not. Things were quite finely poised for the overall championship. Toby and Kemmel led but with a discarded 10th from race 2 they couldn't afford another snafu. Mish and Monty were also discarding a 6th after the Race 1 capsize and needed a win with Toby in third or worse and Ines and Tom sat 3rd but only discarding a 4th and ready to pounce on any mistakes. Off they went powering up the beat into crashing waves. Mish and Monty surfing down the reach in the lead but needing another boat between them and Toby and Kemmel. Will and Joe and Ines and Tom not far adrift. Coming out of the gybe Mish and Monty tipped it in so ending their challenge and allowing Toby and Kemmel to sail off to a big lead and so win the event. Second were Ed and Alex with Will and Joe third. A fourth from Ines and Tom gave them second overall from Mish and Monty in third.

Silver fleet too was closely contested. Gwen and Primrose scored their best result of the weekend with a 7th in the main fleet to finish first Silver fleet overall with once again Zach and Mave next (9th - again their best position) giving them second overall.

And hats-off to Regatta fleet. Despite the really challenging conditions 5 boats stuck it out to contest the final race with Josh and Will once again using the tide to their advantage to record the win and take second overall behind Alex and Amber whose consistency through the weekend (2nd in race 5) saw them through to win Regatta fleet by just 1 point. Elliott and Gregory's third in race 5 was enough for them to finish 3rd overall as well.

So just the small matter of getting everyone back ashore safely. A fantastic showing of parents and club volunteers and some military style coordination saw everyone ashore (mostly without incident) so we could pack up in the sunshine and get on our way after prize-giving.

Not everyone will have come away with the results they might have wished for or expected, but we came to Pevensey for cracking challenging sailing, for the warm welcome we've so enjoyed in the past and to support their developing Cadet squadron. We got all of that and some! What's without question is that, in the longer term, dealing with conditions like they did all the sailors will have gained massively from the experience and their sailing will ultimately be the better for it. I'm sure it won't be long before the fleet comes back for more of the same. A big thank-you to everyone - too many to mention here - for making the weekend such a great success.

Our final Spring Championship event is at the Weymouth and Portland National Sailing Academy on 7/8th May. I write it every year it seems but Worlds Team selection always goes down to the wire and is often decided on the last beat of the last race so another great event and a cracking venue is in prospect.

Overall Results:

PosDivisionBoatSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1stGoldPushing It10001Toby BushKemmel ThorogoodWaldringfield1‑102115
2ndGold 9321Ines GreenTom KrailingWaldringfield31‑43411
3rdGoldNo Regrets9877Hamish CollingridgeMonty HamptonWaldringfield6312‑1112
4thGoldMay Contain Nuts9994Will ShepherdJoe MycroftFrensham Pond24‑54313
5thGoldJoint Effort10012Edward FletcherAlex EnkelWaldringfield‑9268218
6thGoldBoombastic10032Amelia MayhewHettie ThorogoodWaldringfield5535‑818
7thGoldAeolus10002Tom WalkerAva StoddartFrensham Pond46‑97522
8thGoldZest9876Robert StewartDylan McArdleWaldringfield1087‑11631
9thGoldAquilo9977Sarah McEwanHolly JonesFrensham Pond117810‑1636
10thGoldShe Who Dares9028Fiona NeeAnnabel ShepherdFrensham Pond79(RET)61739
11thSilverTwocan9985Gwen ThorogoodPrimrose Denny‑ PickessWaldringfield(RET)14109740
12thSilverJungle is Massive9673Zachary WindibankMave Parry‑ShieldFrensham Pond‑12111212944
13thSilverAurora10076Amelie WhitehouseMaddy SherwoodFrensham Pond131311‑151552
14thSilverShe Who Will Not Be Names9400Elouise MayhewHenry CammWaldringfield81613(RET)RET56
15thGoldTeen Spirit8533George LittleHugh VoyseyFrensham Pond(RET)12RET141257
16thSilverEl Nino9043Samantha NeeAudrey GiumaliFrensham Pond(DNF)DNS14131359
17thGoldMischief & Mayhem9964Sophia SfaxiEvie BoddyFrensham Pond(DNF)RET15171061
18thSilverSizzerin' Hot8333Lydia MycroftMimi WindibankFrensham Pond(DNF)1516161461
Regatta Fleet
1stRegattaDouble Expresso9634Alex McEwanAmber GiumaliFrensham Pond(DNF)13329
2ndRegattaWaveRider7274Josh DavidsonWill HancockSouth Cerney SC(DNF)441110
3rdRegatta 8380Elliott ChapmanGregory BoddyFrensham Pond3‑725313
4thRegattaGame Buoy8845Monty SlumpImmy SherwoodFrensham Pond2584(NSC)19
5thRegattaMaster Mariner8352Jemima McMorrisHarriet DaviesSouth Cerney SC(DNF)262RET22
6thRegattaBluefin9367Ned FairhurstSamuel EnglishFrensham Pond16(RET)DNCDNC31
7thRegattaVelocita9356Eve AllertonFinlay MechanPevensey Bay SC(DNF)35DNCDNC32
8thRegattaEnigma10003Oscar BushEmily KrailingWaldringfield(DNF)91RETDNC34
9thRegatta 9075Chloe RetzlaffMax CollinsPevensey Bay SC(DNS)87DNCDNC39
10thRegatta 9295Fraser MechanNancy AllertonPevensey Bay SC(DNS)DNSDNSDNCDNC48
10thRegatta 9636William ScarffElla CoxPevensey Bay SC(DNC)DNSDNSDNCDNC48

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Vaikobi 2021 Boots - FOOTER