Paul Wyeth /

Remembrance Sunday racing

Only black fleet racing took place at this weekend's round of the Garmin Hamble Winter Series

Monday November 15th 2010, Author: Jonty Sherwill, Location: United Kingdom

A cold calm morning marked the restart of the 2010 Garmin Hamble Winter Series with a two-hour wait for racing to get underway. This long postponement was broken at its halfway point by two guns, these marking either end of the two-minute silence to observe Remembrance Sunday.

By midday the expected breeze filled in from the north, and with seven Black Fleet classes to start these were combined into three groups to shorten the sequence. A single course was set for all classes, with the Fastnet Insurance and North Ryde Middle buoys as the first two marks of a six-mile course, with East Bramble as the finish.

As the shifting breeze steadily backed and built to over 20 knots by the finish what had been conceived as a windward leeward course soon turned into power reaches and provided some exciting moments for the concentrated fleet. Despite the challenging conditions most of the front-runners maintained their form, with Tim Harrington’s Vortex recording another impressive win in IRC1, and Paul Blowers' Patriot Games winning IRC4 and recording the lowest corrected time of the entire fleet.

In IRC2 Neville Hodkin’s Xtra Djinn raised their game to claim a second win in the series, in the J/109s David McLeman's Offbeat took her first victory with the all-conquering J-Dream slipping to ninth in class, and in IRC3 Jika-Jika was involved in a photo finish, winning by just one second from Kevin Sproul's Beneteau First 30.

The prospects for racing in the White Group near the mainland shore had looked even less promising and by 1110 with some of the fleet having already headed for home it was decided to call it a day. No one seemed to grumble on this cold and uninviting morning even when the breeze came in 40 minutes later.

Quantum Sails GBR, celebrating 21 years in the business, was the day sponsor with Peter Kay & Ian Brown from the Hamble loft on hand to present their prizes to the class winners. Both had taken part in the racing, sailing aboard David Hunt’s X-Tosea and Michael Kershaw’s Chimp.
The series continues on 21 November with one race for the Black Fleet classes, while three races are scheduled for the sportsboats in the White Fleet.

Garmin Hamble Winter Series - Day 5 Results:

Black Fleet Race Winners:

IRC 0 'Biela' Richard Barnes

IRC 1 'Vortex' Tim Harrington

IRC 2 ‘Xtra Djinn’ Neville Hodkin

IRC 3 ‘Jika-Jika’ Mike and Jamie Holmes

IRC 4 ‘Patriot Games’ Paul Blowers & Nick Daniels

Sigma 38 ‘Festine Lente’ Meakins Family

J/109 'Offbeat' David McLeman

White Fleet: Racing Abandoned


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