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Bala Sailing Club Easter Regatta 2024

by Rob Sloggett 3 Apr 23:05 PDT 30-31 March 2024
Bala Sailing Club Easter Regatta 2024 © John Hunter

Following on rapidly from the previous week's "Massacre" opening event, Bala SC was set up nicely for two days continuous racing as it hosted 13 mixed handicap and 8 asymmetric fleet boats for its Easter Regatta. Last held in 2021 and having a couple of "rest years", it was great to see such a healthy entry with 9 travelling entrants, 2 of which being a welcome back to the Catapult Class Association.

The forecast made for very interesting reading, with those in the know of Llyn Tegid seeing that Sunday was probably one of the more complex patterns we experience.

Saturday did not let us down with a nice "straight up the lake" holding around 6 to 7 knots, with the odd drop to 3 and peaking at 12 but always consistent. Sunday? Well Sunday was coming straight over the top of the clubhouse which was best described by Mike Allen (last years Commodore, back off multihulls and into a D-One) as "shifty, diagonal, gusty, wild and slightly scary at times".

Race operations took place from an on-water Committee Boat and a strong team of safety boats and mark layers which was needed to maintain the windward and leeward marks and tweak the start line and gate pins as the days progressed. With seasoned Race Control Officer John Haywood overseeing proceedings we were set for a great weekend racing!

End of day 1 in the Handicap fleet saw Mark Candelas and Julie Cranshaw from Wembley SC in their MRX holding top spot with two firsts and a second and Miles Thomas from Balas SC in his Solo with a first, second and third. The Asymmetric fleet was aligned with Paul and Grace Allen in their 59er holding top spot with two firsts and a second and Mike Allen in his D-One also with a first, second and third to hold second place.

And then came Sunday... anyone who spent time on the water will attest to just how challenging the conditions were. When the wind comes from that direction it is varied in both strength and direction with the usual indicators on the water only giving a partial insight as to what is going to hit you, where, when and how strong! Everyone who spent time out there should be given credit for a hard-fought battle, not just against the other competitors but also the elements.

Whilst the first race ran for the full duration, the second race was cut short at around 9 minutes as the gusts and squalls hit hard and multiple boats found the conditions at the windward mark challenging keeping the safety boat crews busy and feeding information into the RCO as the situation was monitored.

After a brief on water pause to assess the conditions, the third race took place in slightly more settled conditions to finish off what was a fantastic day's racing and a great restart of the Easter Regatta.

With Mike and Julie calling time after the first race on day 2, this left the door open for Miles Thomas to hunt down top honours in the handicap fleet. With two seconds and a first, he secured top spot overall, followed up by an incredible performance by Geroge Evans (CCA) in his Catapult taking second overall over the two days. A consistent set of scores fed Josh Beardshaw (Redditch SC) in his Supernova into third place to conclude the top spots in the Handicap fleet. Following on from her opening gambit at the Massacre, Jodie Walker- Graham (Bala SC) in her Topper once again put in a very consistent performance in very challenging conditions to take 5th place overall. It was also great to see Luke Chadwick who only completed his RYA L1/2 Learn to Sail at Bala last year out in a club Laser cutting his teeth on day 1 getting good time under his belt as we move into the club racing season. Definitely a pair to watch as the season progresses.

For the Asymmetric fleet, in a similar way, Paul and his young daughter Grace played it safety first after the first race on day as the 59er team bowed out gracefully leaving the door open for his brother, Mike Allen (Bala SC) to pick up the keys of top spot in his Devoti D-One. This was not an easy top spot to take as he was always being chased by a very consistent (and skilled) team of Ben Dearden and Alice Carter (Yorkshire Dales SC) in their RS200. The final top spot was grabbed by Bala SC's Senior Coach, Andy Todd in his RS100.

We always like to close by thanking both the travelling visitors, club racers and volunteers who run everything behind the scenes but I think on this occasion it is definitely pertinent to pass on a special thanks to all of the "on the water" team who ensured that as well as a set of well thought out courses, a safe racing environment and decision making was maintained in sometimes challenging conditions.

Overall Results:

PosSail NoClassPYHelmCrewClubR1R2R3R4R5R6Pts
Asymmetric Fleet
1st405DEVOTI D ONE950Mike Allen Bala12311(DNC)8
2nd1666RS 2001046Ben DeardenAlice CarterYorkshire Dales43‑522112
3rd360RS 100 8.4999Andy Todd Bala34245(DNC)18
4th742LASER VAGO SD ‑ S/H1100Lee Carter Yorkshire Dales666(DNC)4224
5th10059ER905Paul AllenGrace Allen 211(RET)DNCDNC26
6th164LASER VAGO XD ‑ S/H1078Ed Deakon HUnts SC(DNF)543DNCDNC34
7th1362RS 400939  Bala(DNC)DNCDNCDNC3RET47
8th3312SB20911Mike KnealeKath SimpsonBala5(RET)RETRETDNCDNC49
9th2123DART 16 CATAMARAN with Spinnaker843David Ansell Bala(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC55
9th13943TOPPER VIBE1185Charlie PartingtonDan PartingtonBala(DNF)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC55
Handicap Fleet
1st4636SOLO1142Miles Thomas Bala2‑312218
2nd510CATAPULT CATAMARAN898George Evans CCA323‑53415
3rd520SUPERNOVA1075Josh Beardshaw Redditch SC‑64635220
4th3622MRX1000Mark CandelasJulie CranshawWembley SC1124(DNC)DNC25
5th37449TOPPER1369Jodie Walker‑Graham Bala9‑10874533
6th169195ILCA 71102Andrew Burfield Bala7‑8786634
7th684BLAZE1033Martin Clift Bala(DNC)DNCDNC11339
8th1108SUPERNOVA1075Martin Anderson North Staffs554(RET)DNCDNC48
9th13979GP141138Mike MartinNina MartinBudworth46(DNC)6DNCDNC50
10th118148ILCA 71102Jacob Burfield Bala1299(DNC)DNCDNC64
12th720BLAZE1033Mick Flemming Bala87(DNC)DNCDNCDNC66
13th155963ILCA 71102Luke Chadwick Bala111110(DNC)DNCDNC66
14th557SUPERNOVA1075Daniel Beardshaw Redditch SC(DNC)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC85
14th731BLAZE1033David Ansell Bala(RET)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNC85
14th118410ILCA 71102  Bala(DNC)DNCDNCRETDNCDNC85

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