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Craftinsure Wayfarer National Circuit Finale at Bough Beech Sailing Club

by Sam Pygall 22 Nov 2022 23:02 PST 12-13 November 2022
Bough Beech Wayfarer Open © Sarah Seddon

The Craftinsure Wayfarer National Circuit concluded over the weekend of the 12-13 November with the traditional "Finale" hosted by Bough Beech Sailing Club.

In common with many other dinghy classes this year, the Wayfarers have had a full racing programme this year after two years of Covid-impacted sailing, holding opens across the UK including West Oxfordshire, Blackwater and Datchet and a European Championship at Arun Yacht Club. Bough Beech brought a competitive 2022 sailing season for this all weather, all weight boat to a fitting end.

The 12 strong fleet of locals and travellers was comprised of a small but elite selection of several form teams of the year, including the Andrew and Tom Wilson, John Goudie and Sam Boniface. Sadly, European and National Champion and class sponsor Michael McNamara was unable to attend in person owing to a bout of Covid and was missed.

Race 1 got under way in gentle breeze across the beautiful reservoir with a constrained windward-leeward course set by the race team owing to the wind direction. John Goudie and Sam Boniface lived up to their billing as one of the form teams on the circuit this year, bossing proceedings from start gun to finishing gun, followed closely by Bill Whitney and John Shenton and the Rouse-Collens in the still immaculate Woodie "88".

Race 2 followed rapidly and some of the form teams from the aforementioned Europeans/Nationals came to the fore- the Wilsons and John Clementson crewed by Mel Titmus. They fought hard around the course but ultimately finished in that order. Local team Dave Roberts and Mike Bryant demonstrated a level of mastery of the conditions to complete the race podium.

In a change to the usual format of the Bough Beech open, a 3rd race was held on the Saturday in glorious sunshine but fading wind. The Rouse-Collens dominated proceedings this time, showing the fleet around the course from start to finish, chased hard by 2015 National Champions Guy and Tom Marks, with a consistent Clementson and Titmus in 3rd. This concluded day 1 with an extremely tight leader-board overnight as the fleet retired to a well-deserved evening meal at a local pub.

Day 2 arrived with an extremely misty start that meant a delayed start and the observation of the 2-minute silence for Remembrance Sunday took place on shore rather than afloat and an opportunity to watch the conclusion of the T20 Cricket World Cup. Eventually the mist cleared and two races were held in an increasingly dwindling wind, this time over a triangular course. Clementson and Titmus, having been competitive at the venue over the last few years during the Bough Beech icicle, demonstrated Chipstead-honed mastery of the conditions to take two bullets, pushed by the Wilsons and Whitney/Shelton in the first race of the day and then the O'Donnells (on a day 2 charge after a tune-up with Dave Roberts) and Elliot Marks and Katy Seddon in the last race of the day. Mention must be made of Elliott and Katy who had taken an enormous lead in the race, only to find themselves in a hole on the right hand side of the course with no options to defend.

The day 2 charge of John and Mel meant they were convincing and well-deserved winners of the open meeting and post count-back calculations, the Rouse-Collens were runners up, followed by Whitney and Shelton, chased hard by the Wilsons. All of these teams demonstrated great consistency in very inconsistent wind conditions over the course of the weekend.

As this was the final open meeting of the year for the fleet there was an opportunity to recognise the achievements of the fleet over the full year. This included the Craftinsure National Circuit winners; Michael McNamara and Simon Townsend, followed by the Wilsons and then John Goudie and Sam Boniface. The Travellers Trophy was won by the Wilsons, followed by the O'Donnells with Mark Lee/Sam Pygall coming third. There was also an opportunity to acknowledge the considerable efforts of our out-going Sailing Secretary Tim Townsend, who has pulled together a compelling race calendar for several years, and the three major sponsors of the class: Craftinsure, Hartley Boats and McNamara Sails.

Overall, 59 boats took part in the circuit across the wide variety of inland and salt water venues. The Wayfarers now look forward to a winter break before resuming with the start of the 2023 circuit in April at Datchet.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5Pts
1st11101John ClementsonMel titmusChipstead SC‑523117
2nd88Martin CollenDonna Rouse‑CollenUpper Thames SC3(DNF)14513
3rd10688Bill WhitneyJohn SheltonShoreham SC2443‑713
4th11093Andrew WilsonTom WilsonDatchet Water SC‑7152614
5th20XElliott MarksKaties SeddonBough Beech SC456‑8318
6th11120Guy MarksTom MarksBough Beech SC‑8625821
7th11118John GoudieSam BonifaceWilsonian SC19‑119423
8th10673David RobertsMike BryantBough Beech SC6397‑1025
9th11282Nigel O'DonnellBelinda O'DonnellSwarkestone SC‑128126228
10th11211Mark LeeSam PygallMedway YC971010.5(DNF)36.5
11th11012Tim TownsendJacqueline TownsendMedway YC10108‑10.5937
12th11129Paul HughesJeremy RoseArun YC11117‑121140

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