Warsash Open 2016 - event report

Blaze Open at Warsash Event Report

Slightly later in the year than usual, twenty two Blazes took to the Solent waters for the Warsash Blaze Open 2016. Eight from WSC and fourteen travellers.

After many bacon butties and several gallons of tea, the fleet headed out (together with the Buzzs and RS400s) for a mile or so round the coast to the east to the race area where Nigel Russel (RO and WSC Commodore) had prepared a large trapezoid course.
Winds forecast at 3 to 4 occasionally 5, which turned out to be remarkably accurate.

Race One saw one OCS, WSC's Tim Powell (racing against brother Jonny). There then followed a battle between Mike Lyons, Mark Astbury and Bob Cowan for podium places over the two laps.
Race Two commenced in building winds and a strong cross tide. Bob Cowan took first place with Mike Lyons in second and Nick Thorne in third place.
As the wind built to the top of a 4, gusting 5, Race Three followed on quickly (with some peak speeds of 19Knots recorded on a probably inaccurate smartphone app). A useful swell built up allowing for some speed enhancing wave surfing. Much swapping of places, particularly in the last reach, followed by a tricky beat dodging the RS400 and Buzz fleet to a shortened finish line. Keen eyes needed on the committee boat to separate the finishers. Mike Lyons was again in first place with Tim Powell second and Bob Cowan third.

End of day 1, and we'd had great winds, and some excellent racing. Back to the club for more tea, a splendid variety of cakes, and a spot of brotherly 'discussion' between Tim and Jonny - something to do with gentlemanly conduct and the start line.

During the Saturday evening social in the Hall drink vouchers provided by Kayospruce were swapped for much needed beer and other drinks. A 2 course meal was devoured by hungry sailors and we were entertained by Tim Powell and 3 friends with great live music and even a little dancing. The evening finished late after excellent trade at the bar!

Sunday dawned warm and not so windy, with a 9am competitors' briefing and a 10:30 AM race start. Ominously, some of the fleet had to be towed to the race area as the wind went light. It turned out that a sea breeze was competing with the gradient wind, and one of them (the sea breeze) won out just in time for a 10 minute delayed start, albeit lighter than on day one.

Lighter winds played to the strengths of some different helms, with Race Four being taken by Simon Beddows followed by Mark Astbury and Mike Lyons. In slightly more wind, and with a definite bias to the east of the course, Race Five saw Mike Lyons take a win, followed by Tim Powell and Simon Beddows.
This race saw a retirement from Lloyd Exley with a snapped tiller courtesy of a 'gybing issue' with Mike Lyons taking another win.
Race Six saw another Mike Lyons win followed by Mark Astbury and Simon Beddows to conclude a very enjoyable and well organised six race series.

The excellently organized shore team again had our trolleys waiting for us leading to quick recovery of boats and us all enjoying more tea and cake.

The first five boats received engraved glasses which went in order to Mike Lyons, Bob Cowan, Tim Powell, Mark Astbury and Simon Beddows with 4 Warsash Blazes in the top 6. An array of sail bags, hats and clothes were kindly donated by the new Blaze class owners, Hartley Boats. A raffle was held to distribute the sailbag and 2 jackets. Other Hartley gifts were presented to those who had done something memorable! Full results can be found here:

Photos are available here: http://www.iainmcluckie.co.uk/p697123867

Nick Thorne

Photos from the Warsash Blaze Open

Pictures can now be found at: http://www.iainmcluckie.co.uk/p697123867. An excellect event, enjoyed by all.



Results for all Events in 2016

Burghfield Open        Here

POSH                       On this One

Nationals            Not Yet

Warsash Open    Not Yet

Inlands              Not Yet