Another win for the World Champ

As Childerley and his posse win Etchell's Sir Kenneth Preston Trophy, reports Keith Tippell

Wednesday June 4th 2003, Author: James Boyd, Location: United Kingdom
Staged by the Royal Yacht Squadron in the central Solent and forming the second half of World qualification, this event was sailed over the late May Bank Holiday weekend. The Sir Kenneth Preston is one of the highlights of the season and saw a good 29 boat turnout, with competitors from both the Mersey and Lymington fleets. Although the sun shone for all three days, the variable wind made for testing conditions both for the race committee and the competitors.

Along with the full sailing program (6 races over the 3 days) there was a busy social schedule. A ‘pig on a spit’ was arranged for Saturday at Shepards Wharf, allowing competitors to enjoy food, beer and the usual post race banter while still in their race gear. In stark contrast a gala dinner dance took place in the RYS Pavilion on Sunday evening in honour of the Cowes fleet’s World Champions (Chris Law, Adam Gosling, Poul-Ricard Hoi-Jensen and Stuart Childerly) and their crews. The whole fleet and many guests had a great time and the party rocked on until the early hours (there were a few crews looking a little worse for wear the next day). Many thanks to Patrick Chisholm, the Etchells Cowes Fleet Commodore, for organising this event.

Most crews agreed that the race conditions were tough – at times it was like snakes and ladders on the course with the fleet avoiding black clouds and splitting across the Solent in the search for wind. As usual, over the six races, the cream floated to the top and coming into the last day there were just 10 points between the top six boats. Two bullets on the final day saw Stuart Childerly, Simon Russell and Rodger Marino on Bedrock take the title by 4 points from Patriot Games. The top five finished as follows:

1. Bedrock
2. Patriot Games – Paul Blowers / Jack McCarthy
3. Lucy Blue – Roger Wickens
4. Swedish Blue – Lawrence Meade / Ante Razmilovic
5. Mtu Moja Na Umbwa Yake – Nils Razmilovic

Many thanks to the RYS for their excellent race management and for hosting this regatta.

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