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Hansa Class UK TT at Carsington Sailing Club

by Rick Jillings 24 Jul 2023 23:49 PDT 12 July 2023
Hansa Class UK TT at Carsington © Rick Jillings

At 8.30am keen sailors and volunteers entered the Carsington Sailing Club gates, for the 6th Hansa Touring Trophy of the 2023 season.

The Met office were forecasting 10 knot winds with 19 to 23 knot gusts, with a chance of rain and lightning. Windguru predicted 15 knot winds with 22 to 26 knot gusts.

Carsington Sailability volunteers offered a warm welcome. The visiting flotilla arrived from Glasgow to Guildford and headed for the reservoir foreshore. David Thomas, chair of Carsington Sailability, welcomed everyone to the club and introduced the Race Officer and Honorary Vice President, Keith Appleby and his wife Liz, who briefed us for the 2 back to back morning races and a further 2 races in the afternoon.

Carsington Water offers great sailing, surrounded by amazing Derbyshire hills and countryside, and great wildlife too. A down side is that the local Canada geese also enjoy Carsington. A team of volunteers were needed on hand to clear up the jetty after them.

With a fleet of 23 boats being launched it made for a tight fit on the jetties. The Liberty class launched from central concrete jetty, with its 2 hoists. The north pontoon was also in use, here the bay gave good shelter to the Hansa fleet.

Once on the water and beyond the clubhouse the sailors felt the full strength of the west south westerly wind, driven up and over the dam wall and along the length of the reservoir. The skies offered drama, with every shade of cloud. The occasional sunlight focussed the sharp greens of meadows and woodlands. Gusts ripped over the dark water, turning wave crests white.

The Committee boat hooter signalled the 5-4-1 starting sequence and the fleet was away. Generally boats started on the starboard tack, timing it to head close hauled on rounding the Committee boat, here facing the splash of oncoming waves.

The Liberty fleet followed a guide boat, however with a 5 minute gap before the single handed Hansa fleet set sail, the brighter inflated buoy caught the eye, and the fleet raced round this, rather than the club racing mark numbered 1. From here the course followed parallel to the dam wall, where the deflected wind was pretty unpredictable. Here sails that were neatly trimmed one moment would then flap, spill, fill and thrill. A long downwind leg allowed boats (with the exception of the single sailed Hansa 2.3s) to take advantage of a goose wing. Then there was a reach to pass a large blobby buoy, where sails were tightened before crossing through the start / finish gate.

With the second of the mornings back to back races we were now familiar with the conditions and course. The fleet then headed back to the pontoon, with the shallow waters edge it needed the awaiting shore team to raise many keels to fit all the boats on.

With the galley short handed we were grateful to Sarah Spencer who had stepped in and arranged a buffet lunch. After a quick turnaround we headed out for a 2.15pm start.

By now the sun was shining but the forecast had predicted stronger gusts for the afternoon and that was certainly the case. The wind had also swung to the west and water cascaded over the bows with windward sailing. The boats were surfing at speed on the downwind leg, with the bows forced deep into the water. With the strengthening winds the boats were heeling, taking on water and some needing repair, 5 boats retired. With this, the last scheduled race was cancelled. Once the boats were safely ashore it was time to dry out and enjoy a well deserved cup of tea.

Prizes were mugs emblazoned with a photo taken at the Nationals in 2022. They were awarded by Tony Nicholson, Carsington Honorary Vice President. The Carsington Endeavour Trophy was awarded to Carsington sailor Rick Jillings and the Rotary Shield was awarded to the ever smiling Kim Davies, as the sailor making the best effort on the day. Ron Sawford was thanked for his many years developing and supporting Sailability and the Hansa Class. David Durston offered a big thanks to the Carsington volunteers and all who had made the day such a success.

Overall Results:

Hansa 203
1 Lindsay Burns (Frensham Pond SC)
2 Andrew Lebec (Frensham Pond SC)

Hansa 303 1 person
1 Mike Everitt (Frensham Pond SC)
2 Rory MacKinna (Clyde Cruising Club)
3 Hannah Nicoll (Whitefriars SC)

Hansa 303 2 person
1 Rick and Sue Jillings (Carsington SC)
2 Ian and Enid Chearman (Swarkestone SC)
3 Paula Roddy and Chris Werston (Northampton SC)

1 David Durstan (Whitefriars SC)
2 Paul Pearson (Rutland SC)
3 Chris Emmett

Hansa Class boats are designed to provide safe, stable and easy to sail craft that offer beginners and experienced sailors lots of fun - for recreation or competition sport. Hansa class uk is a charity that encourages and coordinates dinghy racing and training at all levels without barriers.

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