Scorpion Inland Championships Northampton Sailing Club
The date and venue for the Scorpion Inlands had to be changed last minute due to weed problems at Notts County SC. Undaunted by Killer shrimp and a forecast of sun and no wind the competitors arrive to find light but sailable conditions and bright warm sunshine.
With 3 back to back races scheduled for each day and an efficient race team, the event was run to schedule with quick race turn rounds and excellent courses enjoyed.
Race 1 saw 2031 with Pete Crowther and Dave Thompson take the lead with a perfect start and great first legs, with 2022 (Pete Gray) and 2017 ( Jack Banks/Tim Hartley) joining them in the breakaway front group. These 3 appeared to have the top 3 spots sorted until the last couple of legs when 2033 ( Steve Walker / Jerry Hannabuss) managed to jump from the chasing group to take 3rd, with victory going to Pete Gray and Rich Pepperdine with Jack and Tim holding 2nd.
Race 2 start saw a port end flyer from Nigel Potter and Amy Clay who led at the windward mark. After much close racing, Oli Wells and Rachel Rhodes in 2036 emerged victorious with Pete and Rich in 2022 adding a 2nd to their first race victory and Andy (Taxi) Davies and Jon Pygall in 2037 pulling through to take 3rd.
Race 3 saw a new windward leeward course, and the start and first beat honours went to Steve and Jerry in 2033, who pulled out a large lead over the fleet with Debi Gibson and Simon Forbes in pursuit. At the finish 2033 took the victory with Debi and Simon being OCS, this moved Penny Jeffcoate & Hannah Edge into 2nd with Taxi and Andy moving into 3rd, this being crucial in the final points tally.
This left the overnight top 3 as Steve/ Jerry Leading from Pete /Rich with Taxi and Tom 3rd.
With the sun still shining and wind still holding, the Scorpion Junior combo event was run. This allows juniors to team up together or, if young enough with more ’seasoned’ crews, to compete against each other. With a race format of 2 races of 20 minutes on triangular courses, race victories went to Chloe Willars and Amy Clay in 2002 and Imogen and Dave ( Wade) in 2036.
Overall Junior Combo results:
GOLD – 2002, Chloe Willars and Amy Clay
SILVER – 2036, Imogen and Dave Wade
BRONZE – 1920 Jake Willars and Nicola Willars
With Chocolate and Medals awarded, the Hardy types camping at the club enjoyed and excellent curry and World Cup Rugby ( not so good).
Sunday gave similar wind conditions and direction to Saturday, and Race 1 showed Walker and Hannabuss in 2033 on great form with a 2nd victory this time from Taxi and Jon 2nd and Pete and Rich 3rd.
Race 5 saw Pete and Rich in 2022 taking an early lead from Taxi and Jon in 2nd. By the end it was victory for 2022, with 2037in 2nd and Pete Thompson and Dave Crowther holding on to an excellent 3rd.
The overall results now hung on the last race, with any one of 3 able to win.
The first beat saw Steve and Jerry take the lead from Pete and Rich, but at the end of the run the wind died away and increasing from behind. Pete and Rich took advantage and the lead, along with Taxi and Jon, leaving
2033 needing to recover. By the end it was 2022 winning from 2037 and 2033 pulling back to 3rd. This left the top 3 split by one point.
1st Pete Gray and Rich Pepperdine ( 2022) Staunton Harold SC.
2nd Andy (Taxi) Davies and Tom Pygall (2037) Blithfield SC.
3rd Steve Walker and Jerry Hannabuss (2033) Pennine SC.
4th Oli Wells and Rachel Rhodes (2036) Northampton SC.