Spring Series wrap

Mike Dodd-Noble brings the Raymarine Spring Series to a close

Tuesday April 29th 2003, Author: Mike Dodd-Noble, Location: United Kingdom
Six weeks of highly competitive racing in the Raymarine Warsash Spring Series ended in the central Solent on Sunday with competitors facing strong south-westerly winds.

For the previous five weeks the winds had been easterly but as the Committee boats went out to the start area they were recording winds in the upper 20s to 30 knots. However as racing got under way it settled at 20 knots and later dropped down to 15 knots.

Although some class results had been settled the week before with yachts taking unassailable positions, such as Jim Macgregor and Kier Building with Flair, in IRC2 others were open to the end.

Desperado made a desperate bid to snatch victory from the Farr 52 Volvo For Life - Team Tonic by winning on corrected time, and after weeks of light winds, the heavier Swan 65 thought she was in with a chance. But Team Tonic held on to take IRC 1.

In the IRM class there was everything to play for right until the last. The class is traditionally a tussle between the Farr 40s and the Race 1 Ker 11.3s but this year Tim Dixon and Jon Manley's Ker 10.7 Roaring Meg took top slot. For the first races of the day Jon Manley and Tim Dixon recorded one of their worst results of the series coming in fifth and last. Fortunately their nearest rival, Anne and Nick Haigh's Too Steamy did not compete. Manley and Dixon then went on to win the last race and the series ahead of Too Steamy and John Shepherd's Fair Do's V.

IRC3 Great Scott II beat Peter Parker and Prime Cut but it was not enough to dent the Oyster 37, while in IRC4 Frenesi of Clynder, still rigged as a sloop after losing her mizen mast earlier in the series, kept ahead of Mike Fawcett's Mustang 30 Hobby Horse.

Mark Cartwright and Nick Barker's Quarter Tonner Murphy's Law came in the third for Sunday's race but had to settle for fourth in the series behind Simon Porter's Contessa 32, Equator. IRC5 became a Sonata class with Toby Gorman and Missred making a clean sweep to win the series.

One of the toughest battles of the series was the bowsprit class with the final result too close to call until the last and depending on a disqualification. Jamarama, a J120 finally clinched the title by a point after coming in second on Sunday's race behind Charlie J and ahead of Mike Riley and Freckles. But Charlie J was facing a disqualification for not wearing life jackets the previous week when the Committee ordered them to be worn in the high winds. The yacht's flares were also found to be two years out of date. The misdemeanours pushed them down to third.

In the Sigma 33 class Julia Wright and Summation slipped to third on Sunday behind David & Fiona Crawforth's Sigress, but it was not enough to upset the final result. Women's sailing failed to make a clean sweep of the Sigma classes when in the Sigma 38s Joanna Martin and Eurphorix had to settle for second place behind Warsash club member Vince Hayter in Highland Spirit, who assured of series victory sat Sunday's race out.

After four weeks of light winds the sportboats revelled in the fresh conditions, and were able to get up on the plane and reach speeds of 12 knots. The battle was intense with two points separating the first three in the series. In both races on Sunday the Laser SB3s dominated with 3 Sad Old Blokes coming in ahead of Turbo Services International. Paul and Isabel De La Haye on Va Va Voom managed third in the first race but in the second ER came in third, confirming Tony Kilby, Catherine & Christina Simmerhayes place as third in the series.

Two points also separated the top three in the 1720 class. Mark Hillier and Steve McLean in S.T.B.D. managed to keep ahead in races on Sunday of their main rival, Yachts and Yachting, to win the title. Mike Budd and Alan Woosey in Gul won the second race to ensure third overall.

The Hunter 707s needed two attempts to start the first race of the day. Race Officer Peter Knight commented that nearly the whole fleet was two boat lengths over the line as the gun went.

"I could very nearly see the outer distance mark at the other end of the line," he said.

For the second start the committee hoisted the black flag threatening disqualification for any boat over the line one minute before the start. It worked and the fleet had a clean start. Three Little Pigs won the first race and Charlie Fish took the second, but the overall winner for the series was Black Sheep.

Gregor Logan and Highlander III continued to dominate the Mumm 30 class, winning the first race of the day and coming 2nd in the final race. Logan was able to use the three seconds in the 12 race series as discards giving Highlander a staggering eight points from the eight races that counted.

Sunday's racing also concluded a second weekend of racing for the sportsboats and IRM Spring Championships.

Provisional Results for Raymarine Warsash Spring Series 2003 ( full results click here).
(Low points scoring. Points in brackets)

1 ROARING MEG Jon Manley & Tim Dixon (25)
2 TOO STEAMY,Nick & Anne Haigh (31)
3 FAIR DO'S V John Shepherd (32)

2 DESPERADO Richard Loftus (6)
3 W.I.S.C. GBR45R Glynn Williams (12)

2 ROYAL BLUE ADDICT Andrew Fitton/ Ian Handley/ Jenny Austin (12)
3 CAPITALISM Tim Harrington (12)

1 PRIME CUT Peter Parker (5)
2 GREAT SCOTT II Eurof Phillips (10)
3 ELECTRA Michael Tattersall (11)

2 HOBBY HORSE Mike Fawcett (9)
3 EQUATOR Simon Porter (11)

1 MISSRED Toby Gorman (4)
2 ARGO Alec & Charles Russell (8)
3 COBWEB Matt Glasgow (14)

1 JAMARAMA Stewart Hawthorn (8)
2 FRECKLES Mike Riley (9)
3 CHARLEY J Charles Ivill (11)

Sigma 33
1 SUMMATION Julia Wright (6)
2 SIGRESS David & Fiona Crawforth (8)
3 SCARAMOUCHE Robert Smallwood (9)

Sigma 38
1 HIGHLAND SPIRIT Vince Hayter (5)
2 EUPHORIX Joanna Martin (7)
3 ALLIANCE John Brantley (9)

1 X-THERAPIST Russell Hodgson (4)
2 GLIDE-X Ian Dawson (7)
3 RECKLESS RAT Thomas Peters (8)

White Group
Mumm 30:
1 HIGHLANDER III Gregor Logan (8)
2 OFFBEAT James Ives/ I Gill (22)
3 MONKEY BUSINESS David Wilkinson/ Ian Poynton/ Peter Edwards (25)

1 S.T.B.D. Mark Hillier/ Steve McLean (17)
3 GUL Mike Budd / Alan Woosey (18)

Hunter 707
1 BLACK SHEEP James Ross/ Robert Fisher/ J Jalfrazi (11)
2 CHARLIE FISH Iain May (20)
3 BETTY Johnathan Powell (27)

Sports Boats
1 3 SAD OLD BLOKES Jeremy Hill (16)
2 TURBO SERVICES INT John Hanson (16)
3ER Tony Kilby/ Catherine & Christina Simmerhayes (19)

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