The B14 fleet arrived in Quiberon Brittany on 5-7 May for the 2001 European Championship which was held in conjunction with the B14/49er/29er Ovington Eurocup and a regatta for local asymmetric dinghies.
The B14 fleet arrived in Quiberon Brittany on 5-7 May for the 2001 European Championship which was held in conjunction with the B14/49er/29er Ovington Eurocup and a regatta for local asymmetric dinghies. A total of 15 UK boats made the trip to join the growing and enthusiastic French fleet.
Unfortunately, sailing was abandoned on the Saturday due to too much wind, but this didn’t stop the fleet from enjoying themselves, most of whom spent the day land-yachting and/or playing beach volleyball and finishing off with a beach BBQ and copious quantities of alcohol.
Three races were then held on the Sunday in a chilly north-easterly of 15 knots or so, which helped to clear a few heads. The fleet was sharing a start line and time with the 49er fleet, which was interesting to say the least. Each of the three races was won by Tim Fells and Richard Dowsett, followed by Dave Hayes and Sean Dwyer with three seconds, who were showing good speed once they had extricated themselves from the 49ers. Jason Andrews and Chimp Hobson followed with three thirds but with a knotted kite halyard on the last leg of the day being the only thing that denied them a second.
Monday dawned with yet more fuzzy heads in the fleet and with conditions much the same as on the Sunday all was set for another good days sailing, although the wind was dropping as the day went on. The race officer managed to start three races before the pre-arranged deadline of 1400. The first was yet again won by Fells and Dowsett, closely followed by Hayes and Dwyer and Andrews and Hobson.
The Fells/Dowsett team looked set up for a clear victory and their second European championship title, but disaster struck in the second race of the day and the fifth of the championship when a large hole appeared in their kite. They retired, did not manage to start the final race, and therefore had to count their retirement. This left the way open for Hayes and Dwyer to clinch the championship with a third in the fifth race, which was won by Andrews and Hobson (very) closely followed by Simon Nelson and Andy Ramus who were now showing how fast they can be when they keep the sails above the hull.
With Fells and Dowsett in the dinghy park and Andrews and Hobson too (who could not improve on their overall result even if they won the final race so elected not to take part), the sixth and final race was won by a large margin in a fading breeze by Hayes and Dwyer. They were followed by Jolliffe and Branch and Harrison & Radcliffe, whose consistent set of results enabled them to finish fifth and fourth overall respectively. The top French team of Mezieres/Moutard-Martin finished eighth.
1st GBR 749, Dave Hayes and Sean Dwyer
2nd GBR 756, Jason Andrews and Paul Hobson
3rd GBR 758, Tim Fells and Richard Dowsett
4th GBR 688, Tim Harrison and Jonnie Radcliffe
5th GBR 728, Nils Jolliffe and John Branch
6th GBR 646, Jamie Mears and Jemma Mitchell