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Noble Marine International Moth Sprint GP at Queen Mary Sailing Club

by Joe Adams 16 Apr 03:24 PDT 13 April 2024
Noble Marine International Moth Sprint GP at Queen Mary © Jerome Schmitt

15-20 knots, 18-degrees and sunshine greeted the Moth fleet, promising a day of champagne sailing conditions.

The sprint format was set out in the briefing; 8 races of 10-15 minutes back-to-back. Short courses, compact racing, at 25-30 knots of boat speed, high octane stuff.

Race 1

Race 1 kicked off with the fleet pushing hard on the line. Alex Adams (Aerocet), Joe Adams (Exploder) and Andy Jarvis (Exploder) hitting the pin and shooting left, Simon Hiscocks (Bieker) going hard right. At the top mark, the right hand paid as Simon led, followed by Alex, Joe & Andy. By the bottom mark the top three were evenly spaced, but Gareth Davies (Exploder) chased down Andy for a good battle to the finish for 4th & 5th, with Gareth pulling ahead.

Race 2

By now a solid 20 knots was pumping down the course. Clean starts from the fleet, with Simon leading from the pin with Alex, followed by Joe. Gareth started on port and shot off to the right. At the top, the fleet came together, with only a few boat lengths separating the pack, Simon leading (a trend appearing), Alex 2nd and Joe in 3rd followed by Gareth. Simon and Alex extended and maintained their 1 - 2 until the finish. Joe was reeled in by Gareth, with Gareth winning the battle of the exploders.

Race 3

A competitive start with a drag race to the wall, with Joe, Simon and Alex hitting hard left, and Gareth punching out right. The wind shifted left, with the top three overlaying and needing to pull off some high pressure tacking on the mark. Simon got through on the foils, Alex and Joe didn't, enabling Gareth to overtake coming in hot from the right lay. Joe pushed past Alex into 3rd, with Alex later having to retire due to a blown-out spreader adjuster.

Simon pulled out to take the win by a huge margin, Gareth in 2nd and Joe in 3rd, Tom Lambert pushing his Rocket hard downwind to take 4th position ahead of Andy in 5th.

Race 4

Simon was in a league of his own and continued in race 4 (to be honest, I have no memory of where he went, he was a dot on the horizon).

Behind, there was a good battle with Doug Pybus (Thinair), Tom, Andy, Gareth and Joe all swapping places throughout the race. Andy led the group at the final windward mark, but with meters between the boats, it was anyone's game. A final high speed downwind drag race, saw Joe move into 2nd ahead of Gareth, Doug, Andy and Tom.

Race 5

Joe and Gareth pushed hard right, starting on port, ducking behind Simon and the rest of the fleet on starboard. Simon took his usual position in first by the top mark, but the right hand had worked well, and Joe & Gareth were much closer. On the 2nd beat, Simon again went left and opened the door for Gareth and Joe. Gareth briefly took the lead on the downwind. Simon and Joe gybed out for better pressure and leap frogged Gareth. Simon took the win, followed by Joe who led Gareth by a whisker at the line.

Race 6

Simon and Andy started on starboard, but a large group, led by Gareth shot out right. The right did not work out well, with large holes now appearing across the course, and shifty winds meaning drag racing was no longer the only option. Simon sailed off for another great win. Andy sailed a flawless race to take a comfortable 2nd place. Behind, a fierce and chaotic battle between Jeremy Hartley (Aerocet), Doug, and Gareth continued to the bitter end, with Gareth pushing through to 3rd, Jeremy in 4th and Doug in 5th.

Race 7

Most of the fleet started on starboard, with Doug winning the pin from Simon and Joe. At the top, Simon was leading, chased down by the pack, led by Dan Holman (Exocet). Dan stayed on the foils much better than the rest of the fleet, keeping his hull dry to take 2nd place. Gareth coming home in a consistent 3rd place, followed by Joe and Doug.

Race 8

Final race, by this time, the fleet had thinned out a bit, 8 races at max heart rate, whilst hitting 25-30 knots is not easy work, only 7 boats had made the full series.

The last race saw the wind pick up again and a strong 20 knot breeze pulsed down the course, the race concluded with Simon winning by a good distance to complete his picket fence of 1st places. Gareth came home in 2nd, chased hard by Joe in 3rd place, Doug in 4th and Dan in 5th.

A great day's racing in perfect moth sailing conditions. Thank you to the race committee for putting on a great series of races in record time.

The next event will be held at Weymouth on the 18th - 19th May.

Overall Results:

PosBoat ModelSail NoHelmClubR1R2R3R4R5R6R7R8Pts
1stMoth4772Simon HiscocksHayling Island SC‑111111117
2ndExploder MD34938Gareth DaviesStone Sailing Club‑4323333219
3rdExploder5011Joe AdamsOxford Sailing Club34322‑64321
4thExploder5012Andrew JarvisOxford Sailing Club5‑754526633
5thThinair4837Doug PybusQueen Mary Sailing Club86‑105455437
6thMoth4485D HolmanNetley SC‑9568672539
7thAerocet4905Jeremy HartleyStokes Bay Sailing Club788‑9848RET52
8thMoth4442Rob PikeESSC‑101097787755
9thMoth4208Tom LambertNetley SC694699(DNC)DNC57
10thAerocet P106YAlex AdamsWPNSA22RET(DNC)10DNCDNCDNC69
11thExo06WPhilip ReedMumbles SC1111711(DNC)DNCDNCDNC82
12thMoth4951James PhareNetley SC12121110(DNC)DNCDNCDNC87
13thThinair4826Steve McLeanHayling Island SC13(RET)DNCDNCDNCDNCDNCDNC97

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