Graduate Dinghy Association

Grad Northern Championships at Bassenthwaite Sailing Club

Read about Day 1 here Grad Northerns

Graduate Northerns 2016 at Bassenthwaite Sailing Club – Final day

The final day of the Graduate Northerns at Bassenthwaite was sailed in a developing westerly wind.  With this wind direction the 13 teams were tested with big wind shifts and gusts.
Race three, in the morning, started with Liz Stockdale and Helen Phillips doing a perfect port end flyer across the fleet which could only watch and appreciate this manoeuvre.  However, Richard and Jane Thorpe, starting at the committee boat end quickly tacked on to port and sailed out to the right hand corner of the short first beat; nobody followed them and this meant they had an impressive lead at the windward mark.  They held this lead for most of the race.
Overnight leaders, Andy and Sue Flitcroft, crossed the start line last.  This inspired them to sail fast and they began working their way up the fleet.  The pack chasing the Thorpes was led by Ben and Gabe Hill who eventually overhauled them.  On the final beat the Flitcrofts got past the Hills and went on to win the race and Championships by two boat lengths.
Other gainers were Rob and Sally Riddelsdell who were lying last on the second beat after doing two sets of penalty turns but they got in sync with the shifts and eventually finished third.  As is typical for the Graduate class, the racing was close throughout the fleet with small mistakes costing places.  The most unfortunate demonstration was Chris Parker and Katie Ross touching the finishing mark. This allowed the Riddelsdells past while Chris and Katie completed their penalty.
The wind picked up for race four giving the Grads more chances to plane and battle upwind.  The race started with a port biased lined but 20 seconds later the wind shifted to the right favouring those who started at the committee boat end.
First to complete the short beat to windward were Bryn Abendstern and Annabelle Coppinger who maintained this position in the very shifty winds for the first lap before Steve Blackburn and Ciaran McKettrick got past on a fast planing reach.
Second round the windward mark were David Ivins and Holly Brooks who had their best race of the weekend finishing fourth.
With the sailing complete Andy and Sue Flitcroft were again well deserved Northern Champions.  All had smiles on their faces, stories to tell and aching muscles.  A large proportion of the Grads were remaining at Bassenthwaite to continue their Bass Week sailing fun; so more close racing to come.

Pos Sail No. Helm Crew Club R1 R2 R3 R4 total
1 3001 Andy Flitcroft Sue Flitcroft Bolton 1 1 1 5 3
2 2917 Steve Blackburn Ciaran McKettrick West Lancs & Southport 2 2 9 1 5
3 3018 Ben Hill Gabe Hill West Lancs & Bolton 3 4 2 3 8
4 3013 Bryn Abendstern Annabelle Coppinger Toddbrook 4 3 8 2 9
5 2097 Chris Parker Katie Ross Southport 5 5 4 8 14
6 2878 David Ivins Holly Brooks Bolton 6 10 6 4 16
7 3016 Rob Riddelsdell Sally Riddelsdell Chipstead 8 11 3 7 18
8 2896 Richard Abendstern Lewis Coppinger Toddbrook 7 6 10 6 19
9 3004 Richard Thorpe Jane Thorpe Toddbrook 11 9 5 11 25
10 1718 Liz Stockdale Helen Phillips Ripon 10 12 7 10 27
11 2901 Hamilton Roaf Alistair Roafe Chipstead 9 8 11 12 28
12 3007 Paul Clark Emily Clark Bassenthwaite 13 7 13 9 29
13 2978 Roger Dooley Alison Dooley Ripon 12 13 12 13 37