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Big Laser Wednesday at Tynemouth Sailing Club

by Neil Schofield 24 Aug 06:19 PDT 17 August 2022
Big Laser Wednesday at Tynemouth © Vivian Branton

Imitation is the best form of flattery...

Well, we unashamedly replicated the format from Parkstone Yacht Club (see in rounding up & cajoling as many Laser sailors as possible to sail one evening.

We have a large number of Lasers on the beach at Tynemouth but rarely see more than 10 boats out for any given race.

After surprisingly little pestering, a large fleet of 26 Lasers were galvanized into action for the usual 7pm Wednesday evening race from TSC on the 17th August - dubbed 'Big Laser Wednesday'. As it turns out this was the largest one design club turnout from TSC in 40 years! With other handicap boats racing, 36 launched for the evening racing - great to see the club so busy these days!

The breeze was steady from the north-east at 6 knots, a slight wind change just prior to the start making the committee boat end the favoured and therefore much busier place to be with a few being pushed out and a few being early, that gave others a great chance of a good start. A relatively short beat making for a busy windward mark with lots of boats arriving at the same time.

Race officer Howard Steavenson set a starboard hand windward mark to keep sailors on their toes, thinking ahead and coming in on starboard gained you a lot of places.

Nathan Batchelor, fresh from a 2nd place at the 505 Worlds led from start to finish having got away from the following pack. 2nd at the finish was Neil Schofield - just back from the RS400 Nationals. 3rd for most the race was Stuart Keegan just back from the International 14 Worlds - notice a theme here! Stuart was piped on the final lap by Neal Piper who overtook 15 boats after a terrible start - easily done with such a congested line. First lady, and first radial rig was Mary Piper in 8th overall.

We returned to the Haven to a mass of identical trolleys, none of which were clearly identifiable as your own, a few boat lifts between trollies later and the bar was open. Many thanks to Ann Lee for putting on a lovely Chilli for all to enjoy, washed down with a couple of beers. As is usual at TSC Neil Piper was invited to give the 'chalk talk' explaining how he picked his way through the fleet and sparked some excellent discussion on approach to the racecourse and fleet management.

It was great to see 6 boats out with helms all in their first season of racing. The Laser is a great boat for taking a sailor from virtual beginner to experienced racer, Tynemouth run a winter series at Ladyburn Lake, circa 30 miles North of the club which has stirred up more interest in Laser sailing with a few new people joining the club/class on the back of the Winter Series.

Overall Results:

PosClassSail NoAltSailNoHelmPYElapsedLapsCorrectedPoints
1Laser184361 Nathan Batchelor110049.2830.44.581
2Laser165491 Neil Schofield110051.3530.46.542
3Laser / Laser Radial163445 Neal Piper110052.2930.47.433
4Laser165491 Stuart Keegan110054530.49.104
5Laser166583210191John Pitkethly110054.4230.49.445
6Laser152808 Philip Murray110055630.5056
7Laser210409 Jonny Holliday110055.3730.50.347
8Laser Radial195252 Mary Jane Piper114758.1230.50.448
9Laser148726 Adam Ovington110056.1530.5189
10Laser Radial / Laser161643209188Melanie Landamore114758.4530.51.1310
11Laser183074 Sven Richards110056.3830.51.2911
12Laser138579 Ken Murray110056.530.51.4012
13Laser1137 David Gebhard110056.5530.51.4513
14Laser165844 Jonathan Deacon110057.4730.52.3214
15Laser166305 Andrew Nel110059130.53.3915
16Laser152661 Richard Fahey110059.1530.53.5216
17Laser184361 Richard Watson110060.2630.54.5617
18Laser159433 Graham Fraser110060.430.55918
19Laser / Laser Radial / Laser 4.714453071407Chris Brooks110061.4130.56519
20Laser / Laser Radial157392 Georgie Vessey114766.3930.58620
21Laser206487 Richard Benson110065.2230.59.2521
22Laser (Club boat)117391 Adrian Naughton110065.5830.59.5822
23Laser Radial (Club Boat)143592102583Mark Cotton110066.5431.4923
24Laser163354130485Uschi Hiermeier110067.31311.2324
25Laser201015210905Will Branton110068.49312.3425
26Laser / Laser 4.7 (Club boat)160354 Patricia Wells110070.35314.1026

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