Bough Beech Scorpion Open (Noble Marine SE Championship Round 1)

Bough Beech Sailing Club welcomes Scorpion Sailors to the Wolf's Lair

Bough Beech Sailing Club gave a warm welcomed for the first time to the Scorpion Class for the inaugural Open meeting on its waters. This also encompassed the first round of the two part Noble Marine South East Championship Series (the second round being at Eastbourne Sovereign in mid May)

A steady 5-15knts and the odd splash of sunshine greeted the 14 strong fleet on Saturday morning. The fleet hit the water for the first race, Race 1 set the tone for the weekend with 45 minutes of snakes and ladders on triangle/sausage course. Big guns Pete Gray & Rich Pepperdine took the bullet in race one with a clean and ruthless performance. Simon Gillow & Pete Grace chased the entire way round but couldn’t finish the job ending up 2nd and Alex Hayman & James Dodd coming home 3rd.

After a quick and efficient lunch break and all stories shared, the fleet headed back out on the water for Race 2 and 3. The course of choice was now a zig zag/sausage which was to put the teams boat handling to the test with the downwind legs containing two reach to reach gybes in gusty conditions. No problem for Wonder Crew James Dodd sailing with Alex Hayman who showed blinding tekkers and neat gybing skills with the traditional single pole set up, “not bad for a lead mine sailor!” was heard from an astounded helm Alex. After another thrilling encounter Alan Krailing & Simon Forbes put in a shift to take the win and announce themselves as serious title contenders. Alex & James bagged another top 3 in 2nd and Pete & Rich rounding off in 3rd.

Race 3 saw Pete & Rich back to winning ways posting another bullet. Another strong showing from Alan & Simon put them in 2nd with Tom Jeffcoate & Sarah Martin announcing their arrival in 3rd.

After a fantastic day on the water the fleet where invited back to The Wolf’s Lair (Barry & Linda’s) for an evening and the inaugural homemade Pizza bake off! (another first!!)
Day 2 had a lighter forecast and much more sun in store for the fleet. With all 14 boats just about making it out to the start line 2 races where sailed back to back before lunch.

Race officer Guy Marks opted for a figure of 8 course to maximise the potential of the lake in the unfavourable wind direction. Unfortunately Pete & Rich didn’t fancy this so decided to to sail a different course of their own – last seen heading far right up the first beat!!! Alan & Simon capitalised on this and took a commanding lead to bag another bullet. Local small pond specialist John Clementson & Mel Titmus chased down to finish 2nd with Alex & James finishing 3rd.

In the second race of the day the breeze dropped to almost nothing. At the first mark we had a new leader in Janet Ritchie & Alan Ritchie. Janet had managed to drag Alan to the front of the fleet with Alex & James 2nd. On the second beat Pete & Rich managed to climb up to first place with Alex & James holding second and Alan & Simon moving up to 3rd. Unfortunately, a few bad tactics in Drama Queen, Janet & Alan (we are almost certain they came from the front of the boat!) saw them slip back to 7th. The top 3 finished in the afore mentioned order.

This meant that a 1 point difference between Pete & Rich in 1st and Alan & Simon in second meant it was all on for a final race show down. But, unfortunately for us, Alex and I were not in this battle and nobody could catch us up in 3rd securing us the honour of writing this fantastic report, so we had an early shower.

I didn’t see the last race as my beauty regime was in full swing for the prize giving. I hear Pete & Rich lead most of the way from Alan & Simon but on the new windward leeward course meant a breeze shutdown saw the whole fleet sail past the front 2 with John & Mel leading the way to take the win, Janet & Alan coming in 2nd and Barry Wolfenden & Catherine Maguire 3rd.

Many thanks to Bough Beech Sailing Club and Guy Marks the race officer for putting on a fantastic event and keeping us all fed and watered. Also huge thanks to Baz and Linda for having the awesome pizza social at their gaff and letting us all sleep on the floor! Hopefully we will see you next year for another round of great sailing and fantastic hospitality

The Class would also like to extend it’s thanks to Noble Marine for backing this years South East Championship Series.

1st Pete Grey and Rich Pepperdine 6pts
2nd Alan Krailing and Simon Forbes 7pts
3rd Alex Hayman and James Dodd 10pts

We would also like to give a notable mention to Jeff Middleton & Steve Wallace, sailing ‘1882, Nil Disparandom’. Welcome back to the fleet, hopefully we will see you out at Eastbourne in a few weeks time and possibly an open or two in the future.

The second part of the South East Championship Series will take place on the sea at Eastbourn Soverign, May 28th/29th. All race results will be merged together with seven to count towards the overall Championship

Hopefully see you there!

Report Written By James Dodd (not only does he have to all the hard work in the boat, but Alex delegates the race reports to him as well, thanks James 😉 )

Alex Hayman
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