Martin and McGrane take sixth win at RS800 nationals 30/8/06

After a seriously windy day on Monday for the Gul RS800 National Championship at Weymouth, the whole fleet was looking forward to some slightly more subdued conditions for Tuesday’s racing. But the usual 20 knots whipped up and it was a battle of the big boys once again.

Race one and Ollie Page and Jim (Farecla) called the shifts perfectly to round the top mark in first place. Justin Deal and Sarah Marriott rounded just behind with Ralph and Sophie Singleton in third having successfully port-tacked the entire fleet off the start line.

By the end of round three the S flag was flying signalling a shortened course but Page and Jim (Farecla) missed it completely rounded the starboard leeward mark and progressed back up the course handing the first bullet of the day to Steve Irish and Martin Gotrel (Magic Marine), Deal and Marriott took second, and Singleton and Singleton crossed the line in third. Page and Jim eventually saw the error of their ways and managed to squeeze into the top 20.

Race two and a solid 20 knots was blowing across the course. The fleet got off without a single recall and the heaviest teams made to the top first! Once again Ian Martin and Ben McGrane showed us how to do it in the heavy stuff and took another convincing win, while Irish and Gotrel came second.

Race three and everyone was beginning to lag. Clean start by all but it was the shifts that determined the eventual winner. At the end of round three everyone was thinking about post-race pasta and a nice long sleep but the race office sent the fleet round for a fourth round to really test the endurance of the competitors.

While most competitors cursed the committee boat as they began their fourth beat a huge shift popped through catching several teams out. By the finish though Martin and McGrane sealed the deal and took their sixth win of the Gul RS800 championship.