United Kingdom

Inland Championship

Great photos thanks to Peter Mackin.  Full gallery here

RS300 Inland Championships at Stewartby WSC, part of the Rooster RS300 National Tour

With a slightly fruity forecast in the run up to the weekend the early decision to postpone all of Saturdays races to Sunday was largely popular.  This gave us the option to wake up a little later, watch some Rugby match that was happening and travel in a slightly more chilled manner.

The promise of curry and free beer still attracted quite a lot of the fleet to arrive on Saturday afternoon to bask in the warm and welcoming Stewartby clubhouse.  This was an excellent way to start an event, although it may have led to a couple of bleary heads the next morning.

Not only had Stewartby provided curry, beer and breakfast they had also gone to all the effort to remove their reputation as the windiest and coldest place on Earth.  PRO for the day Pete Ellis had kindly provided a fairly solid Force 2 with wall to wall sunshine.  Not only that but he had also agreed to run all of the scheduled races.  Six x 30 min races back to back was the call for the day.

Race one showed us that some local knowledge was a good thing as Chef Richard Hargreaves and Matt Pedlow show the fleet the way around the first couple of laps seemingly swapping places regularly while trying to figure out the shifts.  This allowed Steve Cockerill to catch up and use his superior downwind tactics to great avail to take the win.  Further back the rest of the fleet had had lots of individual battles all finishing comfortably within a couple if minutes of the leaders and in most cases within a couple of cm of each other.

Race two started with a little more breeze.  Paul Watson and Richard Le Mare managed to get up to speed up the first beat to show that low and fast still works on the rare occasion that 2019 would provide us with a windy race.  As the race progressed Paul started to stretch his legs and should have had it in the bag.  Unfortunately for Paul, Steve again provided a downwind masterclass to draw level and then backed this up with a solid final lap to take yet another win.

Race three started in a very similar way.  This time Paul won the boat end and tacked off early in search of his usual bang the corner tactics.  This paid off and he led round the first mark shortly followed by Steve, Matt and head brewer and chef Rich.  These four then had four laps of close racing until the final lap where Steve had yet again manged to slip away.  Matt and Rich were busy racing themselves so allowed Paul to hang on to 2nd, making Richard 3rd, and Matt 4th.

In race four a new face arrived at the pointy end in the form of Peter Curtis who had apparently been lurking waiting to pounce for the first few races.  The wind had now dropped slightly, which meant even closer racing throughout the fleet.  Steve continued his winning ways from Matt 2nd, Rich 3rd, and Peter 4th.  In the middle of the fleet, where Paul had now found himself, silver fleet national Champion Chris Arnell was proving consistently tricky to get past as he worked hard to either fight relegation or work his way into the gold fleet (I think the latter is more likely…)

Race five, Paul ‘bang the corner’ Watson did exactly this to prove once again tactics are simple. Matt Pedlow’s comment of ‘how did you get there’ as I tacked clear ahead at the top mark went to show that maybe the locals didn’t really know everything.  Unfortunately, as the race progressed it turned out that actually knowing what the wind was doing (or guessing better than others) would play a big part.  The top five changed positions about every 10 boat lengths.  In the end it was the newfound speed or Peter who took the win, Steve 2nd, and Matt 3rd.

Onto the final race, Steve had it wrapped up, but this didn’t stop him from taking the lead from the off and having a fairly unchallenged final race.  Things were much closer from 2nd to 8th with multiple place changes on each leg of the course.  It all came down to the final short run to the finish.  The big news being that Matt Butler, who was sailing a boat borrowed from barman Rich, pipped him on the line giving him his best result of the weekend (4th) and demoting Rich from 3rd overall to 4th.  Be careful who you lend your boats to!

With the sailing done it was time for a quick pack up, some hot soup and prize giving with prizes kindly provided by both Stewartby WSC and Rooster Sailing.  Most notable was the prize for Bailey Coulson-Bland, who not only was sailing his first RS300 event but has only recently upgraded from a Topper – a much better shout than the normal pathway!

Steve Cockerill had provided a convincing display to win his 1st RS300 Inland Championship and thanked the team at Stewartby WSC for a well-run, enjoyable event and Peter Mackin for providing him with the tangerine machine to do it in.  A well-deserved win.

Next and final event of the Rooster National Tour is the End of Seasons at Rutland this coming weekend!

Report by Paul Watson

And up on Y&Y here

Results thanks to Richard Hargreves

RS300 Inlands at Stewartby 27-10-19            
Competitor 1 2 3 4 5 6 Total Best 5 Place
Steve Cockerill 1 1 1 1 2 1 7 5 1
Matt Pedlow 3 4 4 2 3 2 18 14 2
Paul Watson 4 2 2 5 4 6 23 17 3
Richard Hargreves 2 17 3 3 5 5 35 18 4
Pete Curtis 7 6 6 4 1 3 27 20 5
Chris Arnell 10 5 5 6 6 8 40 30 6
Rich Le Mare 5 3 8 7 10 16 49 33 7
Matt Butler 11 8 9 8 9 4 49 38 8
Rob Ford 8 7 10 9 8 7 49 39 9
Rich Fryer 6 9 6 10 11 9 51 40 10
Cheryl Wood 13 13 12 12 7 10 67 54 11
Mike Leaver 16 10 11 11 14 12 74 58 12
Ben Heppenstal 9 11 13 15 13 16 77 61 13
Dave Coulson 12 12 14 13 15 13 79 64 14
Emma Pearson 14 14 15 14 12 11 80 65 15
Bailey Coulson-Bland 15 15 16 16 17 17 96 79 16
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