Alan Bax and Paul Busby sailing 3711 emerged as worthy winners of the Flying Fifteen Bulwark Trophy held in Hayling Bay this weekend

Alan Bax and Paul Busby sailing 3711 emerged as worthy winners of the Flying Fifteen Bulwark Trophy held in Hayling Bay this weekend (15-16 September), counting two seconds and a first place, enough to retain the trophy for the second successive year.

A strong wind warning was announced for the south coast and winds of 15-20 kts made for lively sailing conditions. The north-westerly wind flicked this way and that giving opportunities to gain places fast and also to lose them as quickly.

On Saturday 3699 Simon Kneller and Andy Palmer from Grafham led away from the pin end and carved out a lead which was never seriously threatened. Astern 3296 “ffoil” sailed by Roger Sherwood and crewed by owner Adrian Simpson gave chase. After two rounds Alan Bax and Paul Busby and Barry and Sue Parkin in 3630 made up a great deal of ground after both had been over at the pin end and been forced to go round again. On the last triangle these two boats passed ffoil to gain second and third positions.

The second race was sailed in similar conditions excellent beats and fast and furious planing reaches, Simon Raw and Dan Johnson sailing ff 3645 struck inshore and gained a commanding lead. Behind them Alan Bax/Paul Busby made up places as did the Parkins to finish second and third.

Sunday’s wind was even stronger but with more north in it so sea conditions were improved in the bay where the fleet headed after a short delay on shore.

The fleet was away first time, with Brett and Oliver Dingwall over the line. Alan Bax/Paul Busby were soon on to port tack heading inshore where they rounded just ahead of the Dingwalls and “saffina” 3615 Roger and Barbara Palmer. Brett Dingwall however, had omitted to tie on his spinnaker. So he soon lost his position and 3643 Michael and Patrick Hicks moved through to third place. After another round 3630 Barry and Sue Parkin moved through to second place but could not catch Bax/Busby. “Saffina” Roger and Barbara Palmer just held off the Dingwalls and the Hicks brothers to retain third place. The fourth and last race was held under a black flag: this time the wind patterns favoured those who started at the committee boat end and went inshore. At the first mark it was 3706 Tom Leonard and Nick Willis who led from “saffina” Roger and Barbara Palmer with Alan Bax/Paul Busby in third place. On the next three beats there was opportunity as the wind direction and strength varied and on the third beat the Dingwalls, who had been lying in sixth place, went left and then right to catch and pass Alan Bax /Paul Busby. They held their position to the finish to count a first place a disqualification and two did-not-starts!

Overall the speed and consistent sailing of Alan Bax and Paul Busby gave them the Trophy with Barry and Sue Parkin in second place and the Hicks brothers, Michael and Patrick from Salcombe in third place. The Classic Trophy was awarded to759 Peter Hogg/Dave Downs from Dovestone SC.

Overall Results

1st 3711, Alan Bax and Paul Busby Hayling Island SC

2nd 3630, Barry and Sue Parkin RYA

3rd 3643, Michael and Patrick Hicks Salcombe

4th 3699, Simon Kneller and Andy Palmer Grafham Water SC

5th 3296, Roger Sherwood and Adrian Simpson Hayling Island SC

6th 3615, Roger and Barbara Palmer Hayling Island SC

Classics (2700 and below)

1st 759, Peter Hogg David Downs Dovestone SC

2nd 2663, Jeremy Arnold Mike Pearce Ogston SC