Defying gravity

Moth foiling newbie and thedailysail dinghy correspondent Toby Heppell gives his verdict on last week's Nationals
Jason Belben has been trying to win the International Moth UK National Championships for 30 years. This year he finally achieved his goal, sailing a spectacular series to win the event in an impressive manner. Not to take anything away from Belben, who was spectacularly consistent, but one aspect of the Nationals this year was the notable lack of some key competitors, almost certainly due to the close proximity to the World Championships on Lake Garda. One such notable exception was that of Graham Vials who was due to attend in his brand new replacement Bladerider, following his old one struggling with a few early manufacturing issues both during and before the Worlds. Many of the UK fleet were rather looking forward to seeing how the Bladerider went on home waters, away from the breezy and lumpy conditions of Garda. Sadly for Vials, and those hoping to witness his new Bladerider, his boat once again broke on the first race of the first day. As he was unable to fix it before the three allotted races had concluded and as he had come to win, there was no point in staying for the rest of an event when he already had three DNS’ so he left after the first day. The only other Bladerider at the event was a relatively new one, unfortunately this also had some problems and so was unable to compete for most races. Another sailor who was unable to make the entire event was current European Champion, Simon Payne, as work commitments only enabled him to attend two days of sailing. Interestingly in the weeks between the World Championships and the UK Nationals, Payne and a number of others in the class have been involved in some heated debate with relation to sail measurement. Up until the