Summer, best dresses, DJs and 61 RS200s arrived at Stokes Bay SC for round 5 of the National Racing circuit; trouble was the wind seemed a little annoyed that it had not been invited to the RS Ball and went to see Neil Young at the IOW Festival. PRO Mike Raydon tried very hard to get in some racing on Saturday including getting a race started only to have to abandon it as the wind switched off with the leaders seeing their windward mark lay line transit rapidly go into reverse as the tide took over. Having taken the surprised fleet back out only for the light breeze to visit most compass points Mike then delayed abandoning for the day by 15 mins to give the drain man extra time to unblock the club houses drains; can you imagine the reaction of an army of RS girls not being able to wash their hair before the Ball let alone Boycie!
Only snag with finishing early it was officially Pimms o clock so the RS Ball fully launched helped by some stunning looking girls being bussed in (they could not be our crews could they!?!??!). So when Sunday morning dawned sunny with zero wind a lot of people nursed sore heads thinking that there may not be much sailing. Several boats were really caught out as on the water there was a 5-7 knot breeze and quite rightly the first race was started on time. Roger Gilbert/Jane Willan was of course there and gave the fleet a master class in light airs racing. They peeled off three impressive race wins in quick order as the race team did a fantastic job of rapidly turning round races. Sue Antonelli/Jo Lloyd were also sailing well with a fourth and second whilst Paul/Pat Teague scored an impressive second in race 3.
During race 3 the wind looked as if it might be going soft but the race team was determined to catch up lost races and they received rich reward. It was now a very fine clear, sunny day and the sea breeze started to build over the top of the light breeze so in race 4 crews suddenly discovered their toe straps. Steve Dunn and soon to be sister in law Eluned Jones led at mark 1 closely followed by Gilbert/Willan. Dunn/Jones extended their lead whilst Liz Teague/Pete Cruickshank fully applied the motto “anything you can do I can do better” to her parents and gained second place by overtaking Roger/Jane!
Having given himself the chance to run 5 races by amending the SI’s and fitting 4 races in 3 hours Mike Raydon rightly went for race 5 in a building breeze. Of course having been so well behaved the 200’s now had 3 general recalls (sorry Vareo’s) but this gave the breeze even more chance to build so race 5 was held in majestic conditions of 14-16 knots and wall to wall sunshine. Gilbert/Willan led but Geoff Carveth/Emma Clarke blasted round them on the second run but Gilbert/Willan were having none of this and did the same thing on the final run to just win.
The Silver division was won by Paul/Pat Teague in 10th overall just ahead of daughter with the very consistent Katherine Lovering/Ellie Martin third. Chris Bower/Liz MacDonald won the bronze division from Oakham Schools Anthony Chapman/Ed Langford.
Overall on the National Racing Circuit Dave and Jane Hivey take a healthy lead with James Boyce/Sam Tozer second and Pete Vincent/Tessa Nicholls third. Nick Charles/Helen Wightman will be serious challengers once Nick stops mucking around with honeymoons. The silver is a very hot contest with club mates Charlotte Savage/Darren McNamara and John Teague/Ali Lucas split by 2 points whilst Matt/Ellie Sheahan lead the bronze by only six points from Wes/Jo Kangurs.