Vials and Turner into the lead

After a difficult second day at the Flying 15 World Championship

Saturday July 23rd 2011, Author: Gerald New, Location: United Kingdom

Two races were completed on day two of the Flying 15 World Championship at Hayling Island SC. Another day of shifts and holes for the fleets. Winners in the Blue fleet were first race Greg Wells and Mark Darling. Second race Russell Peters and Tim Hall. Winners in the Yellow fleet were Graham Vials and Chris Turner taking both races, which with a third from day one puts them clear leaders overall, 14 points ahead of Ron Packer and Peter Mudford from Australia, with Wells and Darling in third place.

Winners in the Classic/Silver fleet were Malcolm Hall and Alex Hall, which takes them into the overall lead and first Silver boat. First Classic overall are Gavin Cassidy and Lucy Clough.

Some of the comments by competitors after Saturdays racing are unrepeatable here, not through any fault of the race organisation, but a general frustration at the continuing unsettled, unpredictable conditions that they are experiencing out in Hayling Bay. But that could all be yesterday's news if the weather forecast is correct. Sunday is predicted to be west or southwest, force 4 or 5 gusting 6.

One team that did not seem to be upset by the conditions was Graham Vials and Chris Turner. With two wins today, added to their third place in Friday's race, they have a 14 point lead and are the only pair to still be in single figures, which after only three races highlights the difficulties others are experiencing here.

Vials was succinct with his race description - Race 1, the pivot point was the second beat when there was a 30 degree shift "got that right", that took them from eighth to third, picking off the other two (Alan Bax/Bill Masterman and Grant Alderson/Dean McAullay) on the final beat.

Race 2, Steve Goacher and Phil Evans rounded the weather mark first with Vials and Turner second, "Got him at the gybe mark, and then to the line" . . . Game over for the day. Goacher who was over the line in his first race and recovered to 11th, commented; "Got to keep your sense of humour in these conditions."

Greg Wells and Mark Darling won the first race of the blue flight, getting the choice of side right with most pressure on the right-hand side and then the second beat turning into a reach. They were not so fortunate in race 2 when the left-hand side paid, finishing in 17th.

Winners of race 2 were Russell Peters and Tim Hall, who had not had a happy series until then. Peters commented: "We were fifth most of the way and third on the final run and got the win on the final beat. No skill involved - luck. The first two tacked on the final mark we waited and then won by a boat length."

They finished ahead of Mike and Mark Green from St Lucia, with Ireland’s Brian McKee and Ian Smyth third.

Overall, Vials and Turner are clear leaders, but with quite a few others with two good results, waiting for the discard to remove their bad result. Outside the top three many are nursing a potential discard.

Down in fifth Kiwis Sandall and Robinson have a 1 and 6, in 12th Bax and Masterman have a 2 and 3, in 16th Aussie Alderson and McAullay have a 3 and 4 and in 30th Ireland's McKee and Smyth have a 1 and 3. If Vials and Turner hit the buffers at any point, the leader board could quickly change. And with three races scheduled for Sunday with a decent breeze things could look very different come Sunday evening.


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