A total of 31 boats entered the second Vortex national championship held at Hayling Island SC on 28-29 July

The second Laser Vortex national championship was held at Hayling Island Sailing Club on the 28-29 July. A total of 31 boats entered, an increase of 11 boats from the first nationals at Rutland Water last year.

Woman’s tennis may have the Williams sisters but the Laser Vortex Class have the Escritt brothers who are just as dominant in their field. Last year’s champion, Keith Escritt had to settle for second place this time round after brother Ian romped away with the title winning all but the last race.

Although the Grimworth sailors still dominated the top spots, members of other clubs showed an improvement from last year with Ian Palmer coming up the ranks from eighth in the last one to third this time round.

The wind was light throughout the weekend with only a handful of competitors ever making it out onto the trapeze. To make up for that we had warm sunny conditions on both days, perfect for shore crews to enjoy the beach. The Vortex is a very different boat to sail in the light stuff but still proved to be challenging with close starts and competitive racing all the way around the course.

The wind died out almost completely in race three resulting in many retirements and a third of the fleet not finishing due to the 15 minute rule.

The start of race four produced a general recall with the ensuing black flag effectively curbing any over enthusiasm for the remainder of the event. There were some embarrassing capsizes on the runs as people discovered just how far they could lift the windward hull out the water.

Hayling Island SC, even in the middle of being rebuilt, was an excellent and comfortable venue and the race officers provided a smooth and seamless regatta.

Overall Results

1. Ian Excritt (Grimworth SC) 5pts

2. Keith Escritt (Grimworth SC) 12pts

3. Iain Palmer (Hayling Island SC) 15pts

4. Phil Whitehead (Grimworth SC) 21pts

5. Tim Swinburn (Grafham Water SC) 27pts

6. Jonathan Lister (Grimworth SC) 32pts

7. Terry Pike (Hayling Island SC) 36pts

8. Colin Strain (Queen Mary SC 40pts

9. Murray Maunder (Hayling Island SC) 45pts

10. Richard Vie (Weston SC) 46pts

11. Trevor Jefferson (Grimworth SC) 54pts

12. Jim Mackonochie (Hayling Island SC) 57pts

13. Toby Tracey (Aldeburgh YC) 58pts

14. John Tappenden (Gunfleet SC) 62pts

15. Rob Reynolds-Jones (Grimworth SC) 68pts

16. David Hotten (Draycote Water SC) 82pts

17. Andrew Ratcliffe (Grimworth SC) 82pts

18. Philip Leeb-du Toit (Llandegfedd SC) 86pts

19. Patrick Steel (Queen Mary SC) 87pts

20. Ralph Drew (Weston SC) 94pts

21. Mark Benger (Chew Valley Lake SC) 94pts

22. Peter Matthews (WSOBYC) 96pts

23. Robert Halliday (Filey SC) 106pts

24. Alistaire Laidlaw (Hayling Island SC) 115pts

25. Ian Michael (Chichester YC) 117pts

26. Ray Craddoch (Wilsonian SC) 125pts

27. Nicholas Griffin (Grafham Water SC) 133pts

28. Edwyn Corteen (Pennine SC) 133pts

29. David Boffey (Cardiff Bay SC) 135pts

30. Peter Wilby (Bexhill SC)152pts

31. Sarah Heasman (Dracote Water SC) 160pts