A highly competitive fleet attended the third Laser4000 Crewsaver UK series at Hayling Island on August 5-6
A highly competitive fleet attended the third Laser4000 Crewsaver UK series at Hayling Island which was sailed in a gentle Force 2 out in Hayling Bay on August 5-6.
This season has been dominated by the 3-boat team called TEAMcontrol, which is sponsored by a local Hampshire software company. They have raised the images and profile of the racing with their fully logo’ed mainsails and bright orange kites. The kites are emblazoned with “we’re in control” which is proving to be true; every Audi EuroCup event and Crewsaver UK series event had been won by a TEAMcontrol boat with the rest of the team close behind. Hayling Island proved to no different.
Peter Barton & Simon Knatchbull went in as favourites having won the previous two UK events and just come back from a win at the EuroCup at Lake Garda, but the lighter winds on Saturday proved more difficult to read. Unfortunately the dying breeze in the third race meant that the first beat took longer than the time limit, and the race was later abandoned after protest. This left Ian Sanderson & Bird Watson as overnight leaders and Peter Barton & Simon Knatchbull a close second.
Sunday started early with the race officer determined to get four races completed, including the rerun of race three. The TEAMcontrol boats revelled in the conditions and were at the front, but this time it was Mark Cotgrove & Ian Gotts winning the first race. The next race was TEAMcontrol 1st and 2nd with Peter & Simon getting the upper hand. The final two races were won easily by Mark Cotgrove & Ian Gotts to win the event. Ian Sanderson & Bird Watson sailed consistently to finish second overall relegating the TEAMcontrol bat sailed by Peter Barton & Simon Knatchbull to third.
This means that one of the TEAMcontrol has won the UK series, with the next event at Stokes Bay being the decider. The EuroCup series is much more open with any one of six boats able to win, and rumours that some of the previous L4000 champions returning for the last event; the UK nationals at Plymouth at the end of August.
1st Mark Cotgrove & Ian Gotts TEAMcontrol (Hayling Island SC)
2nd Ian Sanderson & Bird Watson (Royal Lymington YC)
3rd Peter Barton & Simon Knatchbull TEAMcontrol (Royal Lymington YC)