Cherry the new champion
Sailing on the RYAs J80s, 21 year-old Cherry, with High Wycombe’s Nick Houchin, Hamble’s Matt Adams and Connor Myant from London, proved to be a strong leader and a cunning opponent.
“It feels great to have come out of the event at the top.” Southampton’s Cherry enthused. “I had a really good team behind me. We’ve been sailing together for three years and have put in a lot of practice recently so it’s fantastic to have done so well.”
Friday, the first day of the three day event, brought autumn gales with 55 knots gusting off the pontoons. Due to high winds and much to the frustration of the eager sailors, racing was cancelled.
However, Saturday dawned as a better day, with ideal match racing conditions breaking across Portland Harbour. In 15-17 knots racing got underway and the round robin with 22 flights was completed to determine the 2006 winner.
While Cherry’s 10-win-one-loss record is impressive, the competition was still strong out on the water, with each team displaying effective boat handling, good use of rules and a strong understanding of the conditions. “It certainly wasn’t an easy event to win," Cherry continued. "Everyone sailed well and there were some top sailors competing.”
To claim the title, Cherry was able to count one more win than two-time national champion, Mark Campbell James and his tried and tested team of Andy Clark, Andy Yates and Graham Sunderland who finished the event in second overall.
Warsash-based, Andy Clark, bowman for Team Campbell James reflected on the event. “It was a shame to lose the first day of racing but the race committee did a great job getting the event back on pace and completing the round robin.
“We’re disappointed not to have won the event, but Nick sailed well all weekend. You win some you lose some, that’s all part of Match Racing. We’ll be back again next year to try for a hat trick.”
1. Nick Cherry, Nick Houchin, Connor Myant, Matt Adams
2. Mark Campbell James, Andy Clark, Andy Yates, Graham Sunderland
3. Ali Hall, Rob Grieg-Gran, Gaz Owen, Tudur Owen
4. Andy Cornah, Andy Bryson, Matt Findlay, Rob Miller, James Roche
5. John Greenland, Tom Montgome, Annie Lush, Dan Sanders, Paul Harris
6. Robbie Allam, Tom Makey, Adam Richards, Ali Haylet, Matt Pinner
7.Ed Hill, Athol King, Andy Mackay, Chris Carden
8. Andrew Shaw, Nick Blevins, Dan Schieber, Tom Hodkinson, Elliott Parsons
9. Katie Archer, Victoria Rawlinson, Kate Fairclough, Hannah Kemlo
10. Mark Lees, Nicky Macgregor, Matt Radmore, Mary Rook, Lucy Macgregor
11. David Tabb, Rob Kemp, Ben Scroggig, Matt Waterhouse
12. Roger Tait, David Wallace, Robert Yeamans, Ewan Stirling