Goodison still on song

Jim Taylor reports on the Laser Standard World and European Qualifier at SCYC, Abersoch

Tuesday September 3rd 2002, Author: Jim Taylor, Location: United Kingdom
61 Lasers arrived at Abersoch to contest the first of the autumn World and European Qualifiers. For the top boats in the fleet this was their last piece of preparation before the Laser Worlds in Hyannis.

Saturday greeted the sailors with a nice force 4 north-easterly before racing got unde rway.

In the first race Charles Baillie-Strong launched himself out of the left with some serious speed to lead at the top mark, with Paul Goodison and Jim Taylor behind. Goodison overtook Baillie-Strong on the top reach and sailed off into the distance while Taylor moved up into second on the next beat. The final result was Goodison, Taylor, Baillie-Strong ahead of the rest by a long way.

The second race saw Goodison and Taylor get to the top mark together and pull away but Taylor had no answer to Goodison's reaching speed. Nick Scott was third for much of the race but lost out on the last run to let Baillie-Strong rack up another third place.

The wind decreased for the third race which was a relief to everyone's legs. Goodison sailed off over the horizon leaving Taylor to use every trick in the book to keep James Gray behind him by half a boat length.

Sunday started very still and there was a long wait until everyone finally got race 4 going in a shifty 6 knots. Right paid big time in this one and at the top mark there were a few big names in a bit of bother. With the race shortened to a single lap, 15 year old Giles Scott won his first ever Qualifier race to start what was to be an excellent day. He was followed home by Ben Todd (who was having a really consistent series) and Andy Brooks.

The final race saw 'king' Goodison complete his clean sweep, pursued home by Anthony Dawson and emerging zephyr master Giles Scott. Paul Goodison then, took the event, with Jim Taylor second and Ben Todd had his best ever Qualifier finishing third.

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