Southern Championship @ Lyme Regis
Scorpion Southern Championship @Lyme Regis SC
12 boats made the trip to Lyme Regis from as far afield of Notts County SC, with the opportunity of testing out the waters for next year’s National Championship.
Saturdays 1st race got underway in an unusual, easterly breeze around 10 knots. Pete Mitchell and Simon Forbes were out of the blocks first rounding the windward mark ahead of Dave Elston and Tom Wasp and Jo Mahy and Ian Dooley, both showing early good form, with the pack following Closely behind. Alex Hayman with new crew James Dodd, were able to make the best of the first broad reach, going low and sailing around 4 boats into 2nd, and Ryan and Hannah Buchanan moving up into 3rd. As the race went on Alex and James were not quite able to put enough pressure on Pete and Simon, who took victory, with Alex and James 2nd, Ryan and Hannah 3rd with Tim Parsons and Andy (Taxi) Davis Taking 4th.
Race 2 saw Tim and Taxi Taking advantage of a big shift on the right hand side of the course, to lead around the First mark, and creating an unassailable gap to win the race. Pete and Simon showed great form to recover from a bad first beat to Finish Second with Ryan and Hannah, just slipping back into 3rd and Pete Rose and crew David Bennett 4th.
Pete and Simon were back at the top in Race 3, leading around the first mark and converting it into the Race Win, despite a brief scare when Nigel Potter and Andy Hayman Sneaked into the lead. But there rusty boat handling saw them slip back down the fleet again. Alex and James were 2nd Around with Ryan and Hannah 3rd. these two had a good little battle all the way around with Alex and James holding onto 2nd, whilst the chasing Ryan and Hannah Slipped back into 4th on the short beat to the finish due to Alex and James covering them, with Ric and Lucy Searle squeezing through for 3rd.
After sailing everyone enjoyed the evening meal put on by the club with the youngsters, trying their best to drink the bar dry of rum, baileys, gin, and cinzano.
Sunday morning was slightly windier, around 15 knots, again from the east. Pete and Simon Just needed a second or better to take the event win, and they showed more of their great form to again lead around the windward mark, despite the chase from Tim and Taxi they were able to Stay in front and win the race, and with it the event. Tim and Taxi Finished 2nd with Nigel Potter and Andy Hayman finally managing to put in a decent result to claim 3rd, from Ryan and Hannah in 4th.
Going into The Final Race of the Series, It was going to be a 3 way shoot out for 2nd and not to have the report writing duties of 3rd. Ryan and Hannah made the best of the breeze softening to lead around the Windward mark with Alex and James on their tale in 2nd whilst Tim and Taxi were in the chasing pack. Ryan and Hannah were able to hold the lead for half of the race before Alex and James made their move and split gybes with them down the run. At the leeward mark Alex and James had made the move stick, swapping place with Ryan and Hannah, with Tim and Taxi still down in 5th. At the last windward mark Alex and James still had the lead, but Tim and Taxi had made the most of a right hand shift to climb back up into 2nd. These two had a great battle down the 2 reaches, but the deciding move was Alex and James Going for the early Drop first, on the second tight reach, to pull away from Tim and Taxi, to win the race with Tim and Taxi 2nd and Ryan and Hannah 3rd.
This Meant Tim and Taxi had secured 2nd by 1 point From Alex and James in 3rd.
Thanks Goes to North Sails and Noble Marine For Sponsorship Of the Southern Championships, and the Silver Scorpion Series.
1st Pete Mitchell and Simon Forbes (2013) 5pts
2nd Tim Parsons and Andy (Taxi) Davis (2014) 9pts
3rd Alex Hayman and James Dodd (2022) 10pts
4th Ryan and Hannah Buchanan (2028) 13pts
5th Ric and Lucy Searle (2023) 19pts