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GJW Direct Topper NS1 North event at Leigh & Lowton Sailing Club

by Ava Harris-Scott 11 Nov 2022 00:01 PST 5 November 2022
Jessica Powell wins the 5.3 fleet at the GJW Direct Topper NS1 North event at Leigh & Lowton © Dave Rowe

It was fantastic to see 52 Toppers signed up to the GJW Direct NS1 north event; a special thank you to Russ Dent of Topper sailboats for being on site providing support to all sailors ensuring boats were prepped and ready to race. A number of lucky sailors received gift bags from Topper sailboats including caps, T-shirts and water bottles which they were all surprised and over the moon to receive. Ava Harris-Scott of Elton SC secured a superb third place in the 5.3 fleet and was asked for her recollection of the days sailing...

We arrived at Leigh & Lowton Sailing Club early to see sailors getting ready for racing. In the morning the wind was very light but was building prior to launching for the first race. The sailors launched and the Race Officers were quick to get the start underway.

The wind shifted to a pin-end bias and the boats lined up eager to make a good start to the first race. There was an individual recall at the start and a few boats went back to the line. A crash on the pin end caused a few boats to have a bad start and others profited from the carnage. Kat Gunn (Notts County / Draycote Academy) rounded the windward mark in first place.

Sailors were constantly trading places, but Kat held a strong lead until completing the final beat of the inner-loop course but an error in counting the number of beats enabled Jessica Powell (Draycote Water) to take the lead, then winning the race.

Race two started once again with an individual recall with some, but not all the boats over the line heading back. Jasper Bramwell (Hollingworth Lake) had a great start at the pin end and ended up being first to the windward mark. It was a very shifty race and if you played the wrong shift you could lose a number of places in a matter of seconds. Jasper kept a big lead throughout the entire race, only to find out that he was over the line at the start.

One more race was scheduled before lunch and ended up as a general recall with most of the fleet over the line. The U flag was displayed but at the next start, two sailors were UFD, one quickly realising their error and sailed in for an early lunch. Jessica led the race with Jasper and Kat battling it out for second place. Close behind Kyla Baxter (Covenham), Finn Waterhouse (Budworth) and Fred Buckly (Yorkshire Dales) were fighting it out for fourth place.

After a quick turnaround for lunch, everybody went out for the same shifty conditions, but the wind dropped when the five-minute flag was shown.

On the first beat two thirds of the fleet went left, but a quick tack onto port paid for the remaining third, proven by Ava Harris-Scott (Elton) who had a particularly bad start but rounded the windward mark in third place. Thomas Semmens (Brixton / Paignton) having another good race led for a few legs.

Nearing the final upwind leg, Ava got penalised for rocking downwind and lost places. The race ended with Jessica taking the lead and winning the race again.

The final race of the day began with no way of catching Jessica as she had won every race of the day. The course had changed from inner loops to an O2 as the wind had shifted right.

The race began with Jasper taking the lead and Nathan Clarke (Waveney & Oulton Broad) close behind. The wind dropped significantly at the windward mark, which affected the 4.2 sailors the most. Once we rounded the windward mark for the second time, we headed back downwind with Jasper still leading.

The wind suddenly shifted 90 degrees and a few boats overtook Jasper. The wind picked up to 13 knots and we had to beat to the finish line. Jessica won, with Nathan close behind.

Congratulations Jess Powell of Draycote Water taking the 5.3 title and Toby Turner of Snettisham Beach taking the honours for the 4.2 fleet.

Thanks for the continued support from the class sponsors GJW Direct, Topper sailboats, Rooster, Optimum Time and Harken UK.

We look forward to winter training and local events before meeting up again at WPNSA for the GJW Direct winter champs in early March.

5.3 Fleet Results:

1stJessica PowellDraycote Water SC‑111114
2ndKat GunnNotts County SC / Draycote Academy2232‑99
3rdAva Harris‑ScottElton SC56‑84419
4thThomas SemmensBrixham YC/Paignton SC3377‑820
5thJasper BramwellHollingworth Lake SC9(OCS)28322
6thFin WaterhouseBudworth SC7559‑1026
7thSammy MasonNotts County SC89‑115527
8thFred BuckleyYorkshire Dales SC101263‑1631
9thAlex Van DorenOxford SC / Abingdon School SC127(UFD)6631
10thNathan ClarkWaveney and Oulton Broad YC‑1541412232
11thRosanna JoyceBudworth SC4109‑141437
12thGeorge SpenceRipon SC61112‑151140
13thKeali RhodesNorthampton SC / Draycote sc17‑321013747
14thCharlotte CooperWest Lancashire YC208(UFD)111251
15thKyla BaxterCovenham SC13254‑271355
16thChloe GraytonNotts County SC19141316‑3062
17thJasper Focardi DollingDovey YC/Shropshire SC16‑2115211769
18thEmre FranklandYorkshire Dales SC‑261526191575
19thTristan ShawBudworth SC18132026‑2977
20thTild PhillippsN/A21161922‑2678
21stBenjamin SmallwoodBudworth SC2224‑29102581
22ndJake BlakewayTrimpley SC/WYSA‑251722202281
23rdReuben LawranceErrwood SC‑292218182381
24thLuke RobinsonScaling Dam SC1419‑34232884
25thSofia EatonSnettisham Beach SC23‑2717242185
26thSasha LeachBudworth SC‑353016172487
27thHarry SimsLlandegfedd SC11232134‑4289
28thTristan SomervilleHelensburgh SC24262525‑27100
29thLara EagletonSDSC‑4028312919107
30thHarriet WoodElton SC‑3333332818112
31stWilliam Mawby‑GroomBanbury SC3429(UFD)3120114
32ndXavier BramwellHollingworth Lake SC382024(UFD)33115
33rdClay Sanderson‑WoodLlandegfedd SC‑4118373038123
34thBaz Sanderson‑WoodLlandegfedd SC303723(DNC)37127
35thEva MurphyBudworth SC273135‑3634127
36thJack WrightLlandegfedd SC313427‑3735127
37thLucy LewisElton SC3635‑403231134
38thEdward WrigleyDalgety Bay SC283832(UFD)39137
39thMatthew BairdBudworth SC32‑40303936137
40thConnie MurphyBudworth SC37‑42363832143
41stRuby TildesleyCovenham SC393928‑4141147
42ndAva McLeanN/A42363935‑44152
43rdMorris MellorDraycote Water SC‑4443383340154
44thLaurie LambStaunton Harold SC‑4341414043165

4.3 Fleet Results:

1stToby TurnerSnettisham Beach SC1‑31114
2ndFaith TurnerSnettisham Beach SC21‑3227
3rdGeorge SimsLlandegfedd SC322‑4310
4thNayth kuklaWinsford Flash SC4‑643415
5thCicely BlairSt Andrews SC(NSC)455TAL23
6thAmelia SimsLlandegfedd SC(NSC)576DNF27
7thNieve GartlandElton SC576(DNC)DNC27
8thHugo Calvey‑SutcliffeBurwain SC6(DNC)DNCDNCDNC33

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