The 18ft Skiff RMW Marine has, once again, cleaned up on the first day of the Weymouth open meeting

The first three races of the final 18ft Skiff Grand Prix took place today at the Weymouth & Portland Sailing Academy. Two races took place in Portland Harbour and a long distance race of 12 miles took the fleet across Weymouth Bay. RMW Marine has dominated the Series to date but because helmsman, Rob Greenhalgh, is currently sailing a Mumm 30 in the Tour de France a la Voile, regular crew Jonny Meers and Dan Johnson were joined by Tim Robinson as skipper for the weekend. They quickly showed their dominance over the rest of the fleet by leading to the windward mark in race one. They were followed by Computacenter (Jon Bennett, Andy Jeffries and Nick Jerkins) and Ernst & Young (Jarrod Simpson, Grant Rollerson and Chris Cleary). The race was somewhat processional after the first leg with RMW extending their lead and those behind consolidating theirs. After three circuits, RMW finished in a comfortable lead followed by Computacenter and Ernst & Young.

Race two saw Computacenter leading at the windward mark followed by Ernst & Young and Base1 (Rob Dulson, Paul Constable and Alistair), RMW was down the pack in sixth place. By the leeward mark the leading positions remained the same but RMW had climbed to fourth. However, at the next windward mark Computacenter still led but RMW was now second followed by Ernst & Young and White Stuff (Victor Brellisford, James Fawcett and Dave Smith). With RMW closing in on the leader it was only a matter of time before they took the lead which they duly did on the next downwind leg splitting gybes with Computacenter. At the finish it was RMW, Computacenter followed by Ernst & Young.

The final race of the day was the long distance race comprising a beat across Portland Harbour, downwind back across the harbour and across to the east side of Weymouth Bay then a beat to a turning mark off Weymouth pier followed by a beat across Portland Harbour and a downwind leg to the finish. At the windward mark White Stuff led followed by RMW and Helly Hansen (Toby Collyer, Stephen Holmewood and Nicky Griffin). White Stuff delayed gybing after rounding the windward mark as did RMW resulting in a very tight reach for them to the harbour entrance. Those who gybed early sailed over them and reached the entrance first led by Computacenter. After getting into the bay, most boats gybed onto starboard while RMW continued on port then worked their way down a fairly central course to the leeward mark finding themselves in the lead followed by White Stuff, Computacenter and Helly Hansen.

On the upwind leg Computacenter overtook White Stuff and for a while started to challenge RMW. However, once inside Portland Harbour RMW extended their lead again. At the finish it was RMW, Computacenter and White Stuff in third.

Results (day 1)

1st RMW Marine, Tim Robinson, Dan Johnson, Jonny Meers 0pts

2nd Computacenter, Jon Bennett, Andy Jeffries, Nick Jerkins 9 pts

3rd White Stuff, Victor Brellisford, James Fawcett Dave Smith 21.7 pts

4th Ernst & Young, Jarrod Simpson, Grant Rollerson, Chris Cleary 23.1pts

5th Base1, Rob Dulson, Paul Constable, Alistair 37pts

6th Ovington Boats, Dave Ovington, Martin Goodlad, Roy Goodlad 38.7pts