Fight to the finish

One point separate Bruce and Andrew at the conclusion of the Musto Skiff Open at Whitstable YC

Wednesday June 10th 2009, Author: Rick Perkins, Location: United Kingdom
As is traditional the first day of any Musto Skiff Open event at Whitstable YC the 30 competitors were greeted with high winds and a nasty chop kicked up by the wind over tide conditions.

The fleet launched for the first of four races and were treated to some epic downwind sailing in very challenging conditions.

The first days racing was full of tales; three sailors really mastered the conditions well with Andy Peake leading overnight from Bruce Keen and Graeme Oliver.

A couple of interesting tales from the day ...

Andy Peake will learn to tie bigger knots or will buy 6mm rope for his trapeze adjusters; whilst sending it on the run in the second race (in second place) his adjusters were down to the knots and as he bounced over a wave the first knot pulled through the cleat .... oh no ... before he could do anything he bounced over another wave resulting in the final knot running through the cleat and from there on it was swimming all the way ... this would later prove to cost him the event ...

Graeme Oliver was another unfortunate who having sailed three good races was on his way to a fourth good result when he went over the handlebars with he foot in the strap ... this lead to twisted knee ligaments and no sailing on the Sunday, hope it mends up soon Graeme.

Worthy of mention from the first day are Mick Keates & Ron Barnes who both completed all 4 races on Saturday in conditions that can only be described as full on ... they showed some of the whipper snappers that experience, guts and bloody mindedness are key qualities for MPS sailing in these conditions.

Saturday evening the fleet enjoyed an excellent BBQ hosted by WYC and all slept very well; apart form Andy Peake who was driven out of his bunk room by some impressive snoring by an unidentified B14 sailor!!!

Sunday arrived with light rain and overcast sky's but by the time the first start arrived the rain & cloud had cleared and we had another decent breeze for racing.

In the first race Dave Poston had put away the water wings and showed the fleet a clean set of heels. Comedy moment of the race (well for those behind them anyway) was class chairman Simon Reynolds squandering a nailed on 4th place with an impressive windward wipe out taking Russ Clark out in the process ... most helpful to the chasing pack ...

As the day went on the wind gradually dropped and progressively moved around to the right.

With Peake & Keen locked in battle the result for the event was going to go to the wire. Keen won race 6 with Peake 2nd to level the score on points.

Race 7 was a bit of a one sided affair that was won by Dan Vincent (unfortunately later scored OCS) and both Peake & Keen were down the fleet.

This set it all up for race 8, this was to be the lightest race of the weekend ... Rick Perkins rounded first and stretched a lead out. On the second run a hole swallowed up the chasing pack reordering the fleet with Keen leading Peake. The race was shortened at the final windward mark with a healthy win for Perkins, but the battle for the event was between Keen & Peake with Keen managing a 4th from Peake in 6th.

This was enough to give Bruce Keen his first event victory from Andy Peake by a single point.

Congratulations to Bruce and hard luck to Andy, no doubt his time is not far away.
Tom Wright was first Youth sailor in 4th overall.

The points from 3rd to 6th were very tight with just one point separating these places, Rick Perkins took 3rd on the tie break.

Thanks to Whitstable Yacht Club who put on an excellent event and we all look forward to next year’s event.

The next event on the Musto Skiff circuit is the National Championships; seems there are many people capable of winning this event ...

Results:

Pos Helm Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 Tot Net
1 Keen Bruce Stokes Bay 2 -5 1 2 3 1 -5 4 23 13
2 Peake Andrew WYC 1 -13 2 1 2 2 -11 6 38 14
3 Perkins Rick WYC 11 3 -31 -31 7 3 3 1 90 28
4 Wright Tom Rutland Sailing Club 4 2 7 -31 5 5 -8 5 67 28
5 Offer Tom Chew Valley Lake SC 7 4 4 3 -10 -31 1 10 70 29
6 Henderson Dan Thorpe Bay YC -31 9 5 8 -13 4 2 2 74 30
7 Vincent Dan RNSA / Stokes Bay 5 6 6 4 6 7 -31 -31 96 34
8 Poston Dave Queen Mary SC 6 18 -31 -31 1 8 4 11 110 48
9 Pelley Richard Stokes Bay 9 11 11 7 -15 10 9 -31 103 57
10 Ward Dan Frensham Ponds & SBSC -31 16 10 -31 4 13 12 7 124 62
11 Keates Mick King George SC 13 8 8 9 -19 -15 15 9 96 62
12 Barnes Ron Thorpe Bay 12 12 14 6 12 -17 -18 12 103 68
13 Marshall Ian Oxford SC 15 17 12 -31 -18 12 13 3 121 72
14 Tanner Griff QMSC 16 20 13 -31 9 9 6 -31 135 73
15 Oliver Graeme WYC 3 1 3 5 -31 -31 31 31 136 74
16 Reynolds Simon WYC 8 7 9 -31 16 6 -31 31 139 77
17 Clark Russ Royal Navy / SBSC 10 -31 -31 31 17 11 7 8 146 84
18 Whitesmith Paul Chew Valley Lake SC 17 15 -31 -31 31 18 14 13 170 108
19 Samus Sergei WYC -31 10 -31 31 14 16 17 31 181 119
20 Smith Richard Blue Circle SC -31 -31 31 31 11 14 10 31 190 128
21 Conner Matt QMSC 18 19 -31 -31 21 22 19 31 192 130
22 Stileman Francis WYC 14 14 -31 -31 23 20 31 31 195 133
23 Chapman Tim Rutland SC -31 -31 31 31 8 19 16 31 198 136
24 Gould Alastair WYC -31 -31 31 31 22 21 31 31 229 167
25 Borders Keith WYC 19 -31 -31 31 31 31 31 31 236 174
26 Robson Steve -31 -31 31 31 20 31 31 31 237 175
27= Sutcliffe Justin WYC -31 -31 31 31 31 31 31 31 248 186
27= Baker Charlie WYC -31 -31 31 31 31 31 31 31 248 186
27= Cranford Smith Graham Queen Mary SC -31 -31 31 31 31 31 31 31 248 186
27= Sanders Peter Queen Mary SC -31 -31 31 31 31 31 31 31 248 186

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