Dragon Warmup Weekender – results

Saturday – Dragonforce 65 Open

11 skippers turned out for the DF65’s to be greeted by a dubious wind coming over the sand dunes.

Despite the efforts of club members (notably Eddie Greenwood and Bob Jolly and their incredible jellyfish trawl net) we did suffer from a bad case of the jellies. I suppose it the same for everyone but annoying none the less.


Well done to John Plant for winning the day (with v2 boat and original sails)

Sunday – Dragonflite 95 Open

Firstly, a special mention to those who made the smooth completion of sixteen highly competitive races possible: Tim Lanigan for his excellent course setting in a shifting A rig breeze which varied from NNW right through to WNW. Peter Jackson for calculating the hand written results which enabled various competitors, (especially Brian Holland from Abersoch), getting on the road home in good time.

The breeze and the sunshine provided ‘Champagne Sailing’ the problem being that Champagne is normally accompanied with oysters and not the Genus Aurelia ie the Moon Jellyfish! This, of course, had its influence on more than one occasion, although the final positions still proved that the cream rises to the top.

Congratulations to John Sharman on a well deserved victory and it was really good to see Eric and Russell back amongst us after their recent sabbaticals.

I hope to see you on the water on the 14/15th of October at the Dragon TT Weekend at Weecher’s Reservoir, Keighley and Saturday the 21st at Fleetwood for the first of our Autumn Series.

Garry Benson / DF95 Club Captain

Day 4 Vane A-Class Championships

The weather conditions were a big test today as the wind gusted up to 35mph at times. All skippers selected there smaller sails because of the wind conditions. Only 4 heats were completed but to the skippers credit, only minor damage was done during todays racing. Its left some skippers having to complete some re-sails tomorrow. Overall there is no change at the top with David / Robert Bell, Martin Roberts / Bernie McNulty, Peter Whiteside and the Wyeth family all taking most of the points on offer.

Tomorrow is the final day with it all to play for.

Reportage & Photography: John Taylor

Day 3 Vane A-Class Championships

Yachting Monthly Cup

A variable medium strength southerly breeze were the conditions for the A-Class fleet today. Between the showers the skippers sailed in this knockout competition which is separate to the main event of the week. In the first round all skippers found themselves in groups of 3. Therefore, after sailing against each other twice the top 2 skippers with the most points, from their group carried on to the next round. The bottom boats would then finish for the day, which was me included. The following rounds would be purely a knockout competition. Drawn out of a hat each skipper would be paired off, sailing the best from 3 races. If after two beats the scores were tied, then the decider would be resolved from the running leg up the lake.

Knockout phase highlights

Most notable performance of the day came from Eddie Greenwood (Sail no 01). Perhaps the most senior skipper competing this week, who reached the semi-finals of this competition. Eddie started sailing in this regatta in the 1950’s and his experience of the lake, was too much for some skippers. Additionally, Amber Geldard one of the youngest competitors sailing this week, was faced with a difficult scenario when her skipper / father David Geldard, (Sail no 94) managed to mistakenly send his yacht to the top bank. Amber managed to re-trim her fathers boat, under pressure from her close competitor and win the points and send them both into the next round.

The Final

David / Robert Bell (Sail no 26) and Shawn / Lewis Wyeth (Sail no 99) competed in the final. After one win each the race was decided on the run. After a close race Shawn / Lewis Wyeth came out winners and have claimed the Yachting Monthly Cup 2017.

Reportage & Photography: John Taylor

Day 2 Vane A-Class Championships

Top coverage from the Vane boys, firstly, this in from Rob Walsh, no explanation other than.. Bullseye!

On to more savory matters a report in from John Taylor:

Again a strong south westerly breeze gusting to 28 mph at times provided the challenging conditions for the A-Class fleet today. The ‘Birkenhead’ team of Martin Roberts / Bernie McNulty (Sail no 49), produced the performance of the day by achieving most of the points that were on offer. Therefore, they are now in a strong position to make a title challenge during the second half of the regatta. Throughout the fleet points were being thrown away because of mistakes made or just pure bad luck. In Anthony Warrens case (Sail No 10), he managed to get himself disqualified in 2 consecutive races by not polling his boat off correctly. In the end the OOD (Derek Priestley) called time on the race early, because boats were starting to break and overall 6 heats had been achieved.

Today (Tuesday) is a day of rest, no sailing will take place. This gives the skippers a chance to rest or make the necessary repairs before Wednesdays knock out competition.

And lastly, an epic slideshow of pictures from Mike Parkington, here: https://flic.kr/s/aHsm5uPEiL  fill your boots! here’s some highlights:

Day 1 Vane A-Class Championships

This just in from John Taylor… Today saw a strong south westerly breeze, approximately 14 mph gusting to 22 mph on occasion. 12 skippers and their mates started competing with their yachts. In the morning session David / Robert Bell (Sail no 26) started strongly and prior to lunch the team hadn’t dropped a point. Fleetwood skipper Peter Whiteside (Sail no 97) sailing one of the heavier boats in the fleet, took advantage of the conditions and also made a very positive start. Some of the lighter displacement yachts found some of the conditions hard going, as well as some of the more mature skippers. I include myself because once i had completed my race, I would then go back to give my sailing colleagues a hand. However, after a couple of times running the full length of the lake, my true lack of fitness would shine through. So what do I do about it??? Retire and cook for everyone on the BBQ later that evening…lol.

The 2017 (UK) Vane A-Class Championships

The 2017 (UK) Vane A-Class Championships at Fleetwood starts on Sunday. This prestigious regatta has a history which dates back to the late 1920’s. This five day event brings skippers from all over the UK, with the Netherlands also represented. It was practise day today, a chance for the skippers to meet up with friends and tune up their yachts prior to tomorrows start.
David Bell (Sail no 26) is the current champion and the holder of the trophy for the past 2 years. He is surely favourite to win again this year. However, there will be strong challenges from Fleetwood skipper Robert Walsh (Sail no 167) and Gosport skipper Shawn Wyeth (Sail No 99). In addition, its worth mentioning Anthony Warren and Lester Gilbert, (Sail no 10) both have teamed up and will be competing with a Graham Bantock designed yacht ‘Shield’. The two skippers have also been trialing a new A-Class design prior to the event.
Watch for further reports.