Cumley and Jones win South Staffs meeting for a second time running 31/3/06

Twenty-nine Larks teams arrived at South Staffs SC for the second open in the Gill 2006 Belle Isle series on 26 March. The wind was shifty and gusty throughout the day which allowed for an exciting game of snakes and ladders to be played out on the water. It seemed that half the fleet had the opportunity to lead a race at some point with big losses and big gains a plenty.

In the first race John Billington and Sue Mellor and Steve Cumley and Eluned Jones made up from dreadful starts to work through the fleet and catch run away leaders Stephen Videlo and Will Branton. Cumley and Jones sneaked past Billington and Mellor on the penultimate beat and covered to the finish. In the second race a break away bunch escaped after making the most of a very port biased line. Richard Bennett and Kelsey Suggitt led across the finish line with Billington and Mellor in second and James Stewart and Ruth Johnson in third.

Going into the final race, five different pairings had the opportunity to sneak the overall win. Videlo and Branton and Simon Cox and Seonaid Fleming made the best starts and led round the first mark with Cumley and Jones in third and Bennett and Suggitt in 4th. An exciting and tactical race then ensued. Cox and Flemming capsized meaning Videlo needed to push Cumley into 3rd and hold the lead to win. Cumley had to maintain at least 2nd and keep Bennett behind him to win. At the end though it was Cumley and Jones who took the race win and secured the open meeting for the second year running.

Overall Results

1st 2496 Steve Cumley and Eluned Jones 2 points
2nd 2487 Richard Bennett and Kelsey Suggitt 4 points
3rd 2485 John Billington and Sue Mellor 4 points
4th 2491 Stephen Videlo and Will Branton 5 points
5th 2495 David Marlow and Edd Bradburn 10 points