53 helms took part in this year’s shorter fastnet series and in-spite of the weather numbers held-up (average 16 boats) throughout the last 7 weeks. The Series Finale took place on Jubilee weekend in almost non-stop rain but allowed a number of helms to pick-up important points to seal their series positions.
The final places were: 1. Ian Parish (Streaker), 2. Ian Howard (Phantom), 3. Robert Finch (Sprint 15), 4. Nigel Denchfield (Lark), 5. John Simmons (Streaker).
Silver Fleet Winners were: 1. John Simmons (Streaker), 2. Harry Fiddler (Rooster/Laser), 3. Harry Janes (J)(Laser Radial)
2012 Fastnet Series (Final Positions) is now available in the results section of the site.
After one of the warmest March ‘springs’ on record, April was dominated by rain and lots of it. While Sunday’s were mercifully spared from a soaking, the lake was high almost all month.
The new start sequence that allowed a two-fleet start for the first time in 8 years was proving straight-forward enough, however the production of results would later require the application of some ‘technology’ before race offers could confidently announce the places on the day.
Nevertheless, numbers were good throughout April and the often breezy conditions created a good deal of excitement, thrills and spills. One notable situation saw Tim Browning go from competitor to impromptu assistant race officer. Having capsized before the start of race 1 on the 15th April, Tim’s boat was towed inverted and tied-up against the committee boat while the start sequence was underway. Tim was dropped off not he committee boat and able to help Emma Southwell before returning to his upturned boat which he righted and took back to shore.
Race Officers and Assistants for April were:
Dave Grummit & Peter Billington, Emma Southwell & Michael Dear/Mike Blyth, John Williamson & Mike Mison, and Tim Browning & Brian Finch.
The breezy conditions continued into early may however that didn’t stop 23 helms taking to the water on May 6th. Now four weeks into the series, help was at hand to race officers in the form of a spreadsheet from our racing coordinator which substantially reduced the amount of effort needed to calculate the results. Development of the spreadsheet continued over the course of the month and is now available to all in the race hut.
Late may saw the return of Spring. Warmer weather and sunshine was a welcome relief and a good breeze meant for near ideal sailing conditions (the cat sailors might not agree – Ed). The streakers continued to post good results and Ian Parish had 8 first place results sealing his series win by week 6. Week six was also notable for a General Recall which tested the Race Officer and new Recall Procedure to the limit!
Race Officers and assistants for May were:
Andi Riley & Robin Hall, Will Daniels & Martin Woodhead, and Richard Hargreaves & Nick Dodge.
The final Sunday was wet. Very wet. Perhaps due to the weather, or perhaps due to the extended bank-holiday and school holidays, numbers were down. That said, a good breeze from the east allowed for a decent full-length beat up the lake and good racing for points. Danny Sillars kept the rescue boats busy with a capsize on the start line in Race 2 and entanglement with the committee boat anchor.
The last race of the series saw just 6 boats but Robert Finch’s 5th place in that race allowed him to pick-up 3rd place in the series.
The race officer on the final weekend was me, Karl Pountney, with Clare Cosenza assisting.
We now look forward to a new series, the Portland Series. This 7 week series starts on 17th June and commemorates the 2012 Olympic Games and is named after the Olympic sailing venue.
I look forward to seeing you on the water.
Racing Coordinator & Vice Commodore