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Volvo Noble Marine National Championship

    2016 RS Vareo Volvo Noble Marine National Championship at Llandegfedd Sailing Club




    Nine races sailed and the championship decided with some match racing! Llandegfedd SC hosted a fabulous event.  A big thank you to all involved in enabling our 26 RS Vareos to have such fun racing together.  Many thanks also to our sponsors Volvo, Noble Marine and RS Sailing.


    Prizewinner photo by Andy Howard from left to right: Nick Crickmore, Fidelis trophy (4th or more nationals), Cheryl Wood (First Lady), Kevin Weatherhead (Concessional Cup), David Jarrett (National Champion and Grand Master), Jeremy Symons (2nd and Master), Nils Jolliffe (3rd) and Bill Jackson (4th)


    Great photos thanks to Llandegfedd Sailing Club. Competitor and car photos thanks to Cheryl Wood.


    Day Two and Three


    The forecast was light for day two at Llandegfedd SC but on the day a little more wind showed up than expected blowing pretty much straight down the lake from the South/South West so the course was reversed from day one.  With just a minor readjustment in the afternoon the course set was good for the two races before lunch and two after.  Some rain was expected but again only one brief shower actually arrived.


    Highlights from day two were a constant stream of sailors having more than close contact with the windward mark and spreader.  There seemed to be little swirl in the wind here (right in the middle of the lake!) so that time after time what looked like a good track become a really tight pinch.  If you got past the windward mark OK the penalty for hoisting the kite before the spreader mark was to have your sheet hook round the buoy on the way past.  I’m told that in the evening the race team were considering introducing parking tickets for those marks!  For me the highlight was arriving at the windward mark looking over for the spreader to see Alex Howard capsized right near it, the mark invisible behind his boat and those around.  As his boat righted the mark was hooked in the spinnaker and hoisted a good 6 feet out of the water – impressive.  The racing felt closer on Sunday with every mark seeming to have lots of boats arriving at the same time with lots of shouting and the fleet pretty compact. 


    Jeremy Symons took race four with Luke Fisher second and David Jarrett with another top three place – a consistent position that would ultimate pay dividends.


    Bill Jackson pipped Jeremy to the line for race five with Nils Jolliffe third.


    An excellent lunch of home-made curry provided a welcome break and chance to compare notes before we were back on the water.


    There was some very close racing in the afternoon and a really tight tussle between Chris Smith, Andrew Appleton, Paul Kettle, Tom Watts and me – it was nip and tuck with the positions seeming to change at every mark.  We were probably battling for 19th place but it was great fun!


    Apparently, back up the front Nils had re-found his form taking race six followed by Bill Jackson and that man Jarret with another third.  I think this was the race that Jeremy sportingly parked on the windward mark to allow some of the rest to pass.


    After a minor course reset race seven saw David Jarrett take the win from Nils with Simon Collinson in third.


    So, after two days and seven races our overnight leader was still Nils with David Jarrett in second and Bill Jackson in third just ahead of Jeremy.


    We woke on Monday morning to clear blue skies and a forecast of 1 “gusting” to 4 knots later in the day.  Arriving at the lake it was clear that racing would be delayed as the surface was like glass.  Plenty of boat tinkering ensued with people in particular looking at the various rigging options for improving the spinnaker pole friction and bungee take-up of the slack rope that ALWAYS wraps around my ankles no matter how hard I try!


    A consensus agreed that there would be a decision at noon to cancel if no wind arrived.  However, with a few puffs here and there we took to the water in the late morning and slowly headed down to the far end of the lake.  By the time we got to the committee boat a decent breeze had arrived and 10 minutes later we were racing.  (Amazingly it lasted for 2 races then gradually faded as we sailed home.)


    In race eight Jeremy took the win convincingly, one again showing how deep he can sail in light winds.  David Jarrett was second, followed by Kevin Weatherhead having his best result of the weekend (and ultimately going on to win the concessional cup).


    As we lined up for the start of the last race the breeze had picked up a bit more and somehow in the jockeying for the line I finally managed (fluked) a good start.  As we approached the windward mark I was on port tack with Bill outside me and had plenty of water to tack in front of those boats coming in on the starboard lay line.  Bill looked across and shouted “are you going?”, I looked at the mark and said “are you sure?”, he nodded so I tacked onto a good line to pass the mark.  Bill tacked but had to pinch really tightly and just sneaked past the buoy while three boats sailed past as he was parked.  He looked up to realise that the pinch to the spreader was just as tight and lost another three places.


    I rounded the spreader in the lead and had that “Oh ****, I’m at the front what do I do now” moment!  I gybed badly (and too quickly) and watched Jeremy take the lead so at least I had someone to follow.  Joost Knotnerus, one of the sailors from The Netherlands had also had a good start and was in close third as we completed the first lap.  (I was choked that the race officer didn’t shorten the course!)  I had a great race with Joost while the natural order was restored as we gradually moved down the fleet.  At the last mark I was caught in some horrible dirty wind, Joost took 8th as I was just pipped to that top 10 place by David Jarrett (galling that it was then a discard for him).


    Bill Jackson produced a terrific comeback after his trials with the windward marks to take second behind Jeremy with John Regan in third.


    Final placings:  David Jarret was the winner and our new National Champion.  While only winning one race he finished second or third in every other race apart from the discards proving that consistency counts.  Jeremy Symons second, Nils Jolliffe third and Bill Jackson fourth.


    Other prize winners to be congratulated include:  Nick Crickmore - Fidelis trophy (4th or more nationals), Cheryl Wood -First Lady, Kevin Weatherhead - Concessional Cup, David Jarrett - Grand Master, and Jeremy Symons - Master.


    It was a great weekend run very efficiently and in good fun by all involved at the Llandegfedd  Sailing Club.  Particular thanks to those organising the domestic stuff, fresh tea on tap and a variety of snacks and other drinks hit the spot perfectly and those on trolley dolly duty really eased our departures and arrivals.


    On a personal note, as someone who sails on a very small pond in Milton Keynes it was great to have so much water to play with and really begin to learn how to manage the kite with a bit less fear and panic.


    My thanks to all of the other competitors: what a great bunch of friendly people who I look forward to meeting again at other events in the future.  Thanks for all those little snippets of help and advice.  Thanks also to our event sponsors Volvo, Noble Marine and RS Sailing.


    I now know the 2 areas I need to concentrate on so I’m off to practice my boat handling skills and tactics then I’ll have it nailed!


    See you at Tata in October.


    By Paul North


    Day One


    Nils Jollife and Dave Jarrett are the overnight leaders after day one of the RS Vareo Volvo Noble Marine National Championship being held at Llangdegfedd Sailing club over the Bank Holiday weekend.


    A warm but overcast day saw a fleet of 26 Vareos (the largest for a good few years) take to the water of this large reservoir in South Wales for 3 back-to-back races this afternoon. The lake is about 1.5 miles long and a mile wide so plenty of room for the standard windward leeward course.  Having been closed for a year for maintenance Langdegfedd reopened this year with brand new, beautiful facilities and a warm welcome was given to the 16 travelling sailors (including 2 from Holland) and 10 locals.  Tea and homemade cake were very welcome at the pre-race briefing.


    After a brief pause while the marks were relaid in a shifting wind racing was underway soon after 1pm.  Jeremy Symons made good speed to the leeward mark but failed to pass the spreader mark and never regained the ground lost having to return 100 yards.  1st place to Nils Jollife closely followed by locals Dave Jarrett and Bill Jackson.


    Race 2 saw Nick Crickmore get a “personal gust” on the second downwind leg, leaving him 100 yards clear of the fleet at the mark.  He held on to take the win with Luke Fisher 2nd and Dave Jarret 3rd.

    I learned a valuable lesson in this race, as you’re beating away from the leeward mark, even if you have the main cleated it’s a good idea to keep a tight hold on it in case you accidentally kick it out of the cleat!  With the main going one way and me going backwards into the water I managed to hang on by the toe straps and after a quick bottom wash avoided a capsize.  Unfortunately as I flew backwards the boat skewed into the boat on my outside (no damage done thankfully) so a 720 penalty pushed me well down the fleet.


    Following a shift at the end of race 2 the marks were reset for Race 3.  For many of us a start with 26 boats was a new experience but the race officer had set a nice long start line so although busy there was room to manoeuvre without it getting too scary. Nils Jolliffe was first, again followed by Dave Jarrett with Jeremy Symons in third.


    As we returned to the large beach our trolleys were provided efficiently by the great shore team and we packed up after a great afternoon sailing.  In the changing rooms the discussion seemed to be that most were looking to discard 2 of today’s races and we all hoped to have done better – we’ll see!


    Great to see so many of this fabulous boat at the event and for some of us “small puddle” sailors a chance to really stretch its legs.  Thank you to all the people involved from Llangdegfedd SC, from where I sat it looked to run very smoothly.  Looking forward to another great day tomorrow after a good night’s sleep.


    By Paul North


    Photos thanks to Llandegfedd SC and Go Pro shot thanks to Paul North

    Volvo Noble Marine RS Vareo National Championship 2016

    Llandegfedd Sailing Club


    Results are final as of 15:23 on August 29, 2016


    Sailed: 9, Discards: 2, To count: 7, Entries: 26, Scoring system: Appendix A
    Rank Sail No HelmName Club R1 R2 R3 R4 R5 R6 R7 R8 R9 Total Nett
    1 605 David Jarrett Llandegfedd SC 2.0 3.0 2.0 3.0 (15.0) 3.0 1.0 2.0 (10.0) 41.0 16.0
    2 665 Jeremy Symons Llandegfedd SC (16.0) (7.0) 3.0 1.0 2.0 6.0 4.0 1.0 1.0 41.0 18.0
    3 487 Nils Jolliffe Netley SC 1.0 5.0 1.0 (13.0) 3.0 1.0 2.0 (9.0) 7.0 42.0 20.0
    4 501 Bill Jackson Llandegfedd SC 3.0 4.0 4.0 (5.0) 1.0 2.0 (8.0) 4.0 2.0 33.0 20.0
    5 165 Nicholas Crickmore Norfolk Island SC 4.0 1.0 (15.0) 7.0 5.0 5.0 6.0 (10.0) 5.0 58.0 33.0
    6 407 Luke Fisher Emberton Park SC 6.0 2.0 (14.0) 2.0 6.0 (10.0) 5.0 6.0 8.0 59.0 35.0
    7 239 Carl Gill Netley SC 5.0 8.0 6.0 4.0 4.0 4.0 9.0 (DNC [27.0]) (DNC [27.0]) 94.0 40.0
    8 523 Simon Collinson Llandegfedd SC 7.0 6.0 9.0 9.0 8.0 7.0 3.0 (12.0) (12.0) 73.0 49.0
    9 547 Kevin Weatherhead South Cerney SC 14.0 (23.0) 8.0 10.0 9.0 (16.0) 11.0 3.0 4.0 98.0 59.0
    10 565 Andy Howard Llandegfedd SC 8.0 11.0 7.0 (15.0) (14.0) 8.0 7.0 5.0 13.0 88.0 59.0
    11 612 John Regan Llandegfedd SC 9.0 12.0 10.0 8.0 13.0 11.0 (18.0) (14.0) 3.0 98.0 66.0
    12 389 Alex Howard Llandegfedd SC 15.0 13.0 5.0 16.0 (17.0) (17.0) 17.0 7.0 6.0 113.0 79.0
    13 226 Joost Knotnerus Zeilvereniging Gaaseprplas 13.0 14.0 (19.0) (23.0) 7.0 14.0 13.0 16.0 9.0 128.0 86.0
    14 415 Andy Trickett Netley SC 12.0 10.0 17.0 6.0 (25.0) 19.0 (23.0) 15.0 14.0 141.0 93.0
    15 660 Cheryl Wood Pennine SC 10.0 9.0 13.0 (24.0) (20.0) 20.0 16.0 8.0 19.0 139.0 95.0
    16 305 Mike Rhodes Netley SC 11.0 17.0 12.0 11.0 12.0 18.0 14.0 (DNC [27.0]) (DNC [27.0]) 149.0 95.0
    17 211 Clare Williams Llandegfedd SC (23.0) (21.0) 16.0 20.0 19.0 13.0 10.0 11.0 18.0 151.0 107.0
    18 337 Richard Holmes Hickling Broad SC 17.0 18.0 (24.0) 18.0 18.0 12.0 12.0 (22.0) 15.0 156.0 110.0
    19 619 Chris Smith Llandegfedd SC 19.0 15.0 (21.0) 14.0 16.0 9.0 20.0 20.0 (21.0) 155.0 113.0
    20 443 Paul North Milton Keynes SC 20.0 (22.0) 11.0 12.0 (21.0) 21.0 19.0 19.0 11.0 156.0 113.0
    21 658 Andrew Appleton South Cerney SC 18.0 19.0 (20.0) 19.0 (22.0) 15.0 15.0 17.0 17.0 162.0 120.0
    22 321 Paul Kettle Oxford SC (25.0) 20.0 (22.0) 22.0 11.0 22.0 21.0 21.0 16.0 180.0 133.0
    23 424 Tom Watts Llandegfedd SC (DNF [27.0]) (26.0) 25.0 17.0 10.0 24.0 22.0 18.0 20.0 189.0 136.0
    24 359 Peter Knapp Bough Beech SC 21.0 16.0 18.0 21.0 23.0 25.0 24.0 (DNF [27.0]) (DNC [27.0]) 202.0 148.0
    25 540 Arwin Bos WSV Buurman 24.0 24.0 23.0 (25.0) 24.0 23.0 25.0 13.0 (DNF [27.0]) 208.0 156.0
    26 266 Chris Coll Olton Mere 22.0 25.0 26.0 (DNF [27.0]) (DNS [27.0]) DNC [27.0] DNC [27.0] DNC [27.0] DNC [27.0] 235.0 181.0


    Category Rank Competitor
    Concessional Cup (over 60) 1 547 Kevin Weatherhead
    Master (50+) 1 665 Jeremy Symons
    Grand Master (55+) 1 605 David Jarrett
    Youth (19 -) 1  
    Lady 1 660 Cheryl Wood
    Fidelis (4th or more Nationals, not a major winner) 1 165 Nicholas Crickmore
    National Winners 1 605 David Jarrett
    National Winners 2 665 Jeremy Symons
    National Winners 3 487 Nils Jolliffe
    National Winners 4 501 Bill Jackson
    Apprentice (1st Nationals) 1 605 David Jarrett

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