Key Yachting's Paul and Marie-Claude Heys sailing their brand-new J/97 Jenga V secure an overall win in Black Group at Cowes Week
Key Yachting’s Paul and Marie-Claude Heys sailing their brand-new J/97 Jenga V in IRC Class 5 notched up some impressive results during the week and a final race win yesterday, was enough to secure an overall win in Black Group at Cowes Week.
Until Tuesday Neville Upton and his Listening Company team aboard one of the 45 entries in the Sunsail charter fleet led overall and were seemingly in line to make history by becoming the first Sunsail yacht ever to win the Black Group title. However, from then on the situation changed and Heys and team started to emerge as serious contenders.
Heys talking about his win said: “The Sunsail boat did exceptionally well by winning all its early races, and had a pretty good grip on the Black Group. It was only on the light wind day, which is the day I was worried about because it’s a day you can easily slide down a snake, that their fleet failed to finish within the time limit and suddenly the game opened for us. This black group is game of ‘last man standing’. As the week goes on there are less and less people in with a chance of winning it and by the Thursday it’s usually pretty obvious as to which two or three boats can do it.”
Team Jenga V was made up of a crew of 15 that was rotated through the week with six to eight sailing each day including the likes of Paul’s wife Marie-Claude who helmed for the first three days, and Neil Martin who, according to Paul, managed to gain their biggest winning margin of 28 minutes on corrected time. Paul continued: “We also had Rob Greenhalgh sailing for three days, as well as three, young Plymouth University students who regularly race J/80s and dinghies, plus we had Matt Sheahan doing the navigating for a couple of days, and his daughter Ellie helping out on the bow.”