Starcross YC were hosts to 30 RS200s on May 4th for their first ever RS200 open meeting which was also round 2 of the RS200 South West Ugly Tour. Visitors from as far afield as Mounts Bay, Burghfield and Wales enjoyed some superb conditions; the forecast northerly wind did arrive but far more than was predicted, the 15-20 knots of breeze gave some blistering fun downwind. The sun also came out showing the Exe estuary and the lovely setting of Starcross YC at its best; many crews wished they had put the sun cream in the boat!
The only snag was that the tide seemed very reluctant to actually come in, (were the Exe SC Comet Trios forming a tide barrage?) leading to a 30 minute postponement for the first race; even then PRO Paul Kelly had no option to set a pretty small course inside the shallows. In a fast and furious race, 18 minutes for the leaders, John Teague/Ali Lucas seemed to be in control until the kite hour glassed on a gybe; Ian Pickard/Karen Falcon took advantage to win with Pete Vincent/Tessa Nicholls 3rd and the fast finishing Liz Teague/Pete Cruickshank 4th.
With a decent volume of water in the estuary the efficient Starcross race team were able to lay a really good course for race 2 in a building breeze which allowed the 200’s to really enjoy downwind. Charlotte Savage/Darren McNamara and Stephen Woodward/Emma Yates led early on but Vincent/Nicholls took the lead at the end of the first run to disappear into a big lead. Teague/Lucas became equally comfortable in second with Pickard/Falcon just holding off Savage/McNamara.
Race 3 started very tight with Starcross’s Paul/Nikki Bartlett leading but once Vincent/Nicholls hit the front they again pulled out a big lead. Again Teague/Lucas proved to be ultra consistent with their third second place just ahead of Pickard/Falcon and the Bartletts. Going into the final race the leading three boats were split only by a point. This time another Starcross boat led, Jayne Johnson/Nicola Mcilroy but Pickard/Falcon revved it up and jumped into a big lead. Now everything depended on how far Vincent/Nicholl could pull back after being over the line and returning. They were helped by Teague/Lucas capsizing whilst in second ruining their perfect score. Mark/Lucy Heather were having their best race to claim 2nd with Johnson Mcilroy 3rd and Vincent/Nicholls 4th.
Pickard/Falcon and Vincent/Nicholls were tied on 5 points with a 1.1.3 scoreline, Pickard/Falcon winning overall with another 3rd. Rosie Sands/Andy Williams won the big girly helm fight to win the silver division with three sixth places from Liz Teague/Pete Cruickshank and Charlotte Savage/Darren McNamara. South Cerney’s Emma Johnson/Owain won the bronze division in 12th overall from Simon/Will Greenslade and Neil/Lucy Chadborn.
Round 3 of the SW Ugly tour is at the Royal Torbay YC on June 27/28; if it is half as good as the first two rounds it will be brilliant.