The Windsport International Sprint 15 Nationals were held at Pentewen Sands Sailing Club from the 23rd to the 25th August. Shanklin made a good showing, well some did (not Me)!!!!!. The Team Trophy was won by Shanklin Sailing Club, mind you Grafham Water Sailing Club will retain the prize as they forgot to bring it back. In the overall positions, Keith Newnham 3rd, Erling Holmberg 8th & Geoff Howlett 9th. Most improved was Erling Holmberg 1st Stuart Pierce 3rd. Stuart was also 2nd in the heavy weight class. The Pro Am was won by Keith Newnham & Steve Petts. The 60 trophy went to Keith Newnham, Erling Holmberg 2nd & Geoff Howlett 3rd. Will Baker was second in the Junior Class.
Thanks to Wightlink who sponsored our travel.
The Windsport International Sprint 15 Nationals at
Pentewan Sands Sailing Club.
23rd-25th August 2009.
Report by Keith
Pentewan Sands Sailing Club in Cornwall hosted the 2009 Sprint 15 national championships, this was the 8th time that the class has chosen this venue to stage their annual showdown, and with 60 boats entered the promise of an exciting 3 days racing was assured.
With overcast skies and a steady force 3 breeze the practice race got underway on the Sunday morning, just a single lap to get the feel of what was to come, after which the fleet came ashore for lunch in preparation of the afternoons sailing.
The afternoon racing was of a back to back nature, with race 1 starting with an increased wind speed of 3-4 and with a very lumpy sea-state, Kyle Stoneham from Thorpe Bay Yacht Club seemed to revel in the conditions and he won with Robin Newbold from Carsington Sailing Club second and Steve Sawford of Rutland Water Sailing Club third.
The second race of the day saw Thomas Sandal from Grafham Water Sailing Club take the winning spot, with Kyle Stoneham second and Kevin Morris also of Grafham third.
Getting back to the shore early was a big incentive to doing well in the race, the first ones there got the help in getting up that gently sloping beach, which certainly did nothing to help maintain a slowly beating heart, necessary in winding down after the event. First ones back also got to the changing room quickly and managed to get access to “the gigantic shower”, one competitor, who shall remain nameless was heard to say that “he found it difficult to turn around in it, as his shoulders were just to wide” (he finished 8th overall)
Monday saw a decrease in wind speed but still with the lumpy sea-state making the beat to windward more difficult; it was once again Kyle Stoneham taking the first spot, with Keith Newnham from Shanklin Sailing Club second and Thomas Sandal third.
By the afternoon the wind had increased to a possible force 4 and the start line had a slight port tack bias and so saw some brave souls attempting port tack starts. But, with the 60 strong fleet accelerating away from the line, the problems of how to break through were always present, but the returns could be worthwhile when achieved. Those on port sailed across the waves, towards the shore and into the calmer water, while those on starboard had to contend with the lumpy sea state for much longer. Kyle Stoneham was first, Robin Newbold second and Martyn Ellis from Thorpe Bay Yacht Club third.
Race 5 was sailed back to back with race 4, Kyle Stoneham once again taking the honours, Thomas Sandal second and Chris Black from Grafham Water Sailing Club third.
Mondays racing was akin to the cricket matches from a few years ago, streakers would always be charging across the pitch, we also had a so-called interloper on the course, but I’m sure we’ll hear a lot more of him in future events.
Tuesday started with the sun shinning and a wind strength about force 2, but as the fleet waited for the committee boat to take station black clouds started looming and the wind increased to maybe force 4. The fleet got away first time but quickly spread out, first was Keith Newnham from Shanklin, with Thomas Sandal from Grafham second and John Postlethwaite from Beaver Sailing Club third.
Once again there was a slight port tack bias and a very gradual wind shift heading the fleet away from the line, 3 boats rounded the windward mark with about a 50 meter lead, after rounding mark 4 the wind decreased to a force 3 and there was another shift which allowed the following boats to fetch the windward mark, and at the end of the lap the race officer wisely shortened the course and finished the race, which was won by Mark Aldridge of Grafham Water Sailing Club, second was Neil Parkhurst from Beaver Sailing Club and third was John Manning also from Beaver.
The prizes for this years championships were presented by Roger Lewsey, commodore of Pentewan Sands Sailing Club; first was Kyle Stoneham from Thorpe Bay Yacht Club with Thomas Sandal of Grafham Water Sailing Club second and Keith Newnham from Shanklin Sailing Club third, Robin Newbold of Carsington was forth and Steve Sawford from Rutland fifth.
The Most Improved Award was tastefully won by Erling Holmberg, with Charles and Elenya Watson second and Stuart Pierce third. The Team Prize was this year quietly won by Shanklin Sailing Club with Grafham Water Sailing Club runners up (but retaining the cup as they had forgotten to bring it with them). The Pro-Am championship was won by Keith Newnham and Steve Petts with Robert England and John Manning second and Frank Sandells and Dave Turnbull third. Keith Ball won the Heavyweights Trophy with Stuart Pierce second and Dave Turnbull third.
The Fifty Plus Trophy was “eventually” awarded to Frank Sandells, Gordon Goldstone was second and Eamonn Browne third. The Sixty Plus Trophy went to Keith Newnham (courtesy of his cardiac doctor), second was Erling Holmberg with Geoff Howlett third, all from blue rinse section of Shanklin Sailing Club. The Juniors Cup winner was Jack Turnbull from Seasalter Sailing Club, William Baker second and Jacob Aldridge third.
The Ladies Cup was won by Finella Miller of Marconi Sailing Club with Linda Littlejohn second. The dream team of Charles and Elenya Watson won the Two-Up Trophy (just as well really as they had also forgotten to bring it with them) with Simon and Lily Giles second and Jeremy and Sarah Britton third.
The Paul Smith Trophy Winner for the most persistant competitor was awarded to Keith Persin from Thorpe Bay Yacht Club by Carol Smith.
After the presentation of awards, the new class champion and flying ace Kyle Stoneham, thanked, (on behalf of the Sprint 15 Association and Competitors); the Pentewan Sands Sailing Club for hosting this marvelous event; the ladies of the club for the provision of food and drink during the day and the meals in the evening (how did they cater for all of us in that tiny kitchen?); the race officer Mike Ward for the excellent courses and race management and the rescue and buoy laying team out on the course. He also expressed his thanks to Brian Phipps and gang from Windsport International for all of their help in keeping the boats sailing with their supply of spares and repairs when needed, and all of the other sponsors for their help in supporting this event.
The author of this piece of drivel (sorry, article) would like to thank the ZZ Top look-a-like for those excellent pasties (or was it Father Christmas doing his summer job?), but would like to apologize for the fact that after the event all of the races seem the same, so you’ll find there could be scant regards as to the truth, but at least the names are correct to show up the guilty.
ps:- But I did have a great time!