The first APMYC Club Championship saw nine Hollowell skippers and one gate crasher (oops sorry guest) compete in what I can only call testing conditions. Pro Mke Ewart had his work cut out to set a reasonable course and whist he was unable to give the perfect beat, the varying wind touching down randomly across the course made conditions testing enough indeed.
Twenty races (we do seem to be getting through them lately) were completed with six out of the nine recording race wins, eventual winner John Burgoine just squeezed home ahead of the more consistant Peter Shepherd. Peter Jackson headed up the chasing fleet in a closely fought contest between Peter, Geoff, Keith & Richard. All of these managed some race wins but it was PJ's collection of second places with superior consistent sailing that saw him take third.
Our guest skipper Paul Risdale was a little off the pace of this group with Tim Leese and Ian Bell having a close battle for the final position, and whilst both of these managed to feature high up in a few races Tim managed this ajust a few more times than Ian.
John was pleased to receive the Trophy for this event an appropriately dragon adourned Pewter Tankard donated by Keith Bell.
Our thanks go to Mike Ewart for keeping us all in order, or at least trying to, setting the course, qnd acting as all round good egg throughout the event.
The next Club Championship event is for Wee Nips on 15th April.
With the main man away square rigging, the rest of us came out to play, a couple of welcome visitors to our shores came along for the ride, Paul Risdale (who has embarked upon a John Lewis "Siskin" build) and Colin Davies. Alongside the seven sixes were a couple of Dragon Flites, newish member Ian Bell who is starting to get to grips with his and Tim Leese, as the scorecard was split in two they were given a minute start over the rest of us so that they could have their own private battle.
In the Six fleet, Gabriela the Romanza of Peter Jackson was sporting new cloth for the first time, as was Keith Bells Tias, once the initial teething problems were mainly sorted Peter sailed Gabriela into a very respectable third and but for Keith doing the penalty pirouette on far too many occasions and the slow start in adjusting his sails, he would have been higher up the ranking.
This was the deciding race of the series with only two skippers with any real aspirations to take home the superb little trophy John Burgoine & Peter Shepherd, as it worked out Peter managed to keep Monica in the hunt up to race nine when John put in some cracking races to the finish with three straight wins out of three to take the series.
(if only I hadn't got John hooked on sixes by lending him my boat for the first round when i was unable to sail! still there is always next year!
Geoff Raygada's Mr Ga Ga results were a bit up and down consequently seeing him into fourth place and the visitors from not so afar rounded out the card, showing that it really does pay to keep sailing these yachts on a regular basis.
Eight skippers made it to Abington Park for the Footy Frostbite Open, also part of the Frostbite Winter Series, as usual with city centre sailing the wind is always a little fickle, and somewhat variable, the smart skippers stuck with the "Justin" and A rigs with only those seeking greater control dropping down to the B rig.
The Ibex showed quite a bit of future potential, and it looked like John burgoine had forgotten how to sail for the first four races however a bit of tweaking a hefty thump from Peter shepherd Fat Boy at the leeward mark and all seemed well from then on!
Mike ewart went well with his new Frensham Ice (try not to drop this one Mike!) the aforementioned Ibex got better as the day progressed and the skippers got to grips with them, the club staple of Fat Boys rounding off the fleet.
All in all it was a most enjoyable days racing which considering the recent icy conditions was a little unexpected.
No pictures this time as it was too cold for anyone to operate a camera! The Icicle series really lived up to it's name today and yet it warms my heart to report eight hardy soles venture into the unknown and came to play, they were rewarded by the weather by what can only be described as a mixed bag! Sometimes it was light and tricky, sometimes it was strong and tricky other times it blew quite sweetly but not everywhere and so being on the right track was important too.
All that having been said there was some great racing with boats matching up performances throughout the fleet, Keith Bell was the star of this round and has cemented his position at the top of the table, the next four, Peter Shepherd, Mike Ewart, Peter Jackson and Geoff Raygada all had their moments and in the end were only covered by 8 points.
At the back newcomer Ian Bell and Derek Lane were having their own private battle with a number of close finishes.
Richard Dolman made the treck up from home only to go out early with a servo/battery issue.
A most enjoyable mornings racing.
A nice fleet of seven Sixes, three DF95's and one IOM came out to play today. Despite the weather forecast conditions were a little better than the previous event in this series with enough wind to allow some good racing throughout the fleet.
John Burgoine borrowed Mike Ewart's wooden hulled Rococco and once again showed us all how it should be done, Peter shepherd started slowly but managed to trim up his Romanza to give John a few good races towards the end, Mike himself managed to start well, however being as he is getting over being quite ill from last week he wasn't able to keep up the strictly dancing pace and dropped back towards the end of the day.
Grenville Thornhill rounded out the top four with a series of consistant results, with Richard Dolman just behind, sailing his Ravenna for the first time in earnest., It was a shame his race win wasn't rewarded with a higher overall placing, as he failed to notice his topping lift get caught up for the final two races, looks like another well sorted Ravenna has just joined the ever burdgoening Six Metre Fleet.
Keith Bell and Peter Jackson had their moments but never seemed to capitalise when they had the advantage, more set up and sail work required for all of us I think! Geoff Raygada joined us for a couple of races with his "Alternate" IOM and the small fleet of DF95's had their own private battle which was eventually won by Tim Leese, from Ian Bell and Derek Lane who after having lent him my DF95 told me his fathers army days nickname was "Jinx Lane", it would seem like father like son.
Fickle light winds greated us, not the 7mph with 20 mph gusts that were forecast, nor was the direction correct still we manfully soldiered on. With Mike Ewart away on another mini break and a number of skippers turning out without yachts it was a small but selective fleet that took to the water.
The DF95 of Tim Leese suffered more than most with the lack of wind, apart from the odd race where it blew up a little and it came steaming along, it did however look somewhat diminuative along side the fleet of sixes. I couldn't persuade the gongoozlers on the bank to take on the challange of sailing my rinky-dink pink DF95, (was it the colour chaps?) so unfotunately Tim didn't really have anyone to sail against.
A couple of prospective club members joined us to sail as guests Paul Risdale "did I forget to mention his Renaisance is salmon not pink" who we know well and Grenville Thornhill with his newly completed Romanza. Messers Shepherd & Jackson made adjustments to mast positions just before the event and so consequently spent most of the races slowly getting their sails set up back to where they should be! (that's our excuse and we are sticking to it, never mind the "lost" keys!).
Geoff Raygada went well whilst he was sailing keeping it consistant and would have probably gone on to win however family commitments meant he had to cut his racing short, with the tricky wind and the close perfomance of all the yachts everyone had a turn at the front. When I got the chance I kept Paul Risdale honest out tic-tacing him for a couple of race wins.
Help was gratefully recieved from the gongoozlers Ian, Derek & occasionally Tim, can someone send me some photographs?
I didn't think I would have much to write about but it seems I have babbled on for sometime so I expect you will want to get to the results.
The light winds and slightly foggy day greated us and for a time it looked as if no racing would be possible, even with the Footy class yachts which generally have no difficulty in light conditions with a large sail (power) to weight ratio.
The overall weight is heavier than previous incarnations with an all up displacement of around 500g and a keel bulb to overall weight of around 68%, slightly higher than we have previously achieved, the intention being to make a stiffer more stable boat than the Fat Boy or Slim.
Needless to say these extreme light winds didn't really suit the concept, however the pick up after the tack did appear to better than Fat Boy, probably due to the wider at the hull keel fin an idea we might explore further in the future.
So how did IBEX fair, well pretty well really, the result of the racing could not have been closer with the three experienced Footy skippers battling it out to finish after eight races all on 10 points each and having to be seperated on countback. Mike Ewart being declared the winner having danced his way into the lead in the final two races!
Seven stalwarts braved the cold this Saturday for the second round of the Icicle Winter Series of club races. The wind was onshore so Mike Ewart and Keith Bell set a simple course with the start adjacent and parallel with the bank to a windward buoy and the a spreader, back to the start, which was now a gate and back to the windward buoy followed by a downwind finish. The wind was light and fluky until we had finished.
We were pleased that John Burgoine joined us as a guest with his recently completed Wee Nip, which passed scrutineering with no problems. He had not sailed his boat before the event and then proceeded to be in the lead throughout the morning, hopefully he enjoyed his experience sailing with us and will join us in the future. Mike Ewart was consistent as usual and came in second place with his pink boat.
Tim Leese and Ian Bell were fighting it out at the back of the fleet until Ian's borrowed 101 boat developed a problem with the rudder servo and had to retire, consequently we retired to the warmth of the clubhouse and did the results over hot beverages.
The Abington Park Wee Nip is an ideal starter model for those who wish to start life in Radio sailing by building their own model, as a club we have now provided over 100 “kits”, we make all the trickybits for you, to prospective model yachters throughout the UK and abroad. If enough Hollowell Skippers express an interest then we would be happy to run a build workshop should they wish to participate.
The number of Joysway Dragon Flite DF95 owners within our club has now risen to six, and in our opinion it is probably the most cost effective and certainly the best thought out design for an almost RTR boat getting you into radio sailing.
The Dragon Flite comes complete in the box with everything you need to get started, a quick search on the internet will show the cost of the model is around £270.00 excluding the radio gear which will set you back about £50.00.
Abington Park MYC are traditionally a builders club (hence our very sucessful Wee Nip model) however we do see this as a pathway yacht for those of you who maybe radio sailing curious and want to have a go at very little outlay without the need to build. The club will be putting on some class specific racing for these yachts starting in the spring of 2017 and in the meantime they are eligible for the Six Metre+ Snowflake Winter Series, indeed a number of the Six Metre skippers have them available to loan if anyone wants to try before you buy!
Peter Shepherd took no prisoners and showed why he is the Footy Champion in this first Frostbite Series event, admittedly he had to knick a couple of races he had no right to win and then in race eight he got his just desserts when the wind picked up as he approached the line and his Justin rig was overpowered sending him off into the hinterland!
Mike Ewart kept the Fat Boy honest, Peter Jackson had a turn around in recent form and could only manage third.
Geoff Raygada is still trying to work out if he enjoys Footy sailing, I am begining to suspect it is his "guilty pleasure".
Keith Bell can't wait to get his hands on his own boat, for something new is on the horizon at the workshop at the centre of the universe!
This event showed once again just how much fun you can have with just 12 inches of model yacht to play with.
Derek Lane & Tim Leese struggled manfully on!