An RS600/700/800 open meeting took place last weekend
Chew Valley SC saw 13 RS600s for the first Fat Face circuit event of the season. The forecast for the day was sunshine and showers. The course was a triangle affair with the windward mark shared with the other RSs.
Race one and the fleet got away in a force two. Matt Humphries quickly broke away from the fleet. As the laps progressed the fun began as all the fleets met at the top mark at the same time, this proved costly for Alex Knight who in 6th place had a meeting with an 800 and was subsequently wiped out putting his trapeze hook through his hull in the progress.
Race two saw more clashes with the other fleets, but the weather had the biggest say as all of a sudden the majority of the fleet got wiped out by a squall, the best moment being Matt Conner auditioning for a place in the Red Arrows by getting his 600 airborne and crashing vertically in a true ‘you’ve been framed’ moment.
Race three saw the fleet swapping positions regularly both towards the front and at the back. Dave Nunn held second for several laps but finished 9th. And the back four were constantly swapping places with Damon Bower slipping from 10th to last after falling out of the boat at the gybe mark.
Day two racing was cancelled due to the 40-50 knot winds.
A brisk south-westerly greeted the RS700 fleet at their first Fat Face Racing Circuit event at Chew Valley. The wind direction enabled the course to be set over the full length of the lake providing some excellent racing, with plenty of snakes and ladders sailing.
Race 1 saw Andy White round the windward mark first closely followed by Tim Johnson, Tony Freer and Eddie Gatehouse. White and Johnson headed down the right side of the run, but were beaten to the leeward mark by Freer who went left. Freer continued to extend his advantage, until the penultimate run when both he and White capsized to leave Johnson with a large lead. White, in hot pursuit, rapidly closed the gap and Johnson piped White on the line by the smallest of margin.
The wind increased for race two as Johnson roared off in to a commanding lead, with Freer in second and Gatehouse third. A huge squall decimated the fleet during the third round, those heading downwind under spinnaker were toast. Johnson took another win, Freer second, Gatehouse third and local David Aston fourth.
With the squall now passed race three got under way with White flying out of the blocks. Following a tussle with Johnson downwind White sprinted off into the distance. Freer, Gatehouse and Steve Marshal chased hard, but on the final run disaster struck for Johnson as his trapeze wire snapped. Johnson continued on only able to trapeze on one tack. White won by quite a margin followed by Freer, Gatehouse, Marshal and Johnson trailing in sixth
Chew Valley Lake looked more like the Southern Ocean on Sunday morning so to no surprise racing was cancelled, leaving Tony Freer the winner.
A warm sunny and breezy day greeted the competitors of this first RS800 Fat Face circuit event of 2004 at Chew Valley Lake where the fleets were treated to something a bit different from the usual downwind finishing.
The first race set off with Steve Irish and Martin Gotrel having a close fight with Chris Haworth and Stuart Aston for first, while Alex Davies and Sarah Hughes made the best of the shifts to round in third. Lots of place swapping down the run and the tight race for first was concluded when Irish/Gotrel lost Haworth/Aston whilst doing some penalty turns. Davies/Hughes just made it in third ahead of Olive/Norris.
The fleet started the second race under Black Flag and towards an ominous black cloud. Haworth/Aston pulled out a useful lead from Irish/Gotrel, Olive/Norris and David Sayce/Chris Doe. As the black cloud vented its full 35 knot fury on the fleet, Haworth/Aston sailed past the windward mark, unable to bear away, whilst Irish/Gotrel managed the bear away and hoist, letting Olive/Norris cruise through for a great win when they subsequently capsized.
Race three got away cleanly, with Irish/Gotrel taking control early on and leading round to the finish, Haworth/Aston took second, with Olive/Norris taking a close third from Sayce/Doe.
Having recorded 46knot gusts, the race officer cancelled the racing on Sunday.
Matt Humphries CVLSC
Griff Tanner Datchet Water
Andy Heissig Lymington
Ian Marshall RAFSA
Adrian White Mount Batten
Tony Freer CVLSC
Tim Johnson CVLSC
Eddie Gatehouse Chichester
David Aston CVLSC
Steve Marshall Corus
Steve Irish Martin Gotrel Draycote
Chris Haworth Stuart Aston BCYC
Spod Olive Jane Norris Stokes Bay
David Sayce Chris Doe HISC
Justin Deal Sarah Marriott Datchet