Round-up: Weekend of contrasts for racers on Oulton Broad

PUBLISHED: 11:26 17 April 2019 | UPDATED: 11:26 17 April 2019

Action from Norwich Frostbites Sailing Club Picture: David Yapp

Action from Norwich Frostbites Sailing Club Picture: David Yapp


With most dinghies choosing to race on Saturday and most keelboats on Sunday, the two days had a very different feel to them at Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club.

Dinghy action from Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club Picture: Claire GrasbyDinghy action from Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club Picture: Claire Grasby

Saturday's gusty north-easterly breeze was strong enough to cause several capsizes among the 16 dinghies. Richard Fryer in his RS300 was first to finish both Fast Handicap races but each time, on handicap, Duncan Madin's K1 was first, followed by Ben Falat's OK. Third places went to Alan Cone (Solo) in race one and James Nourse (Laser) in race two.

Meanwhile, Adam Yorkston and Kyle Beamish sailed a club Wanderer to victory in the first Slow Handicap race. George Madin (RS Tera Pro) was second, 10 seconds ahead on corrected time of Thomas Betts in a Laser 4.7. In race two, Madin was first, with the Toppers of Max Stratford and Jamie Dobson second and third.

Similar conditions were expected on Sunday but an early hail shower disrupted the wind pattern and the first series of races started in a light southerly breeze. Ben Falat in his OK won the first Fast Handicap by a big margin from there Lasers who had a very close race with Jonathan Jones getting the better of his rivals on the final lap. By the second race the easterly breeze was building. The fleet of four boats sailed the hour-long race as a tight bunch with plenty of place changing. Eventually Jones took the win with Veronica Falat second.

In the keelboat races Simon Marfleet and Stef Oosthuysen in Firebird were Squib winners with the young team of Oliver Hunt and James Nourse in Crazy Diamond second. For the Mixed Keelboats race, Hunt and Nourse swapped roles in the boat and won the race with Firebird second. Waveney 20 Speedwell is now owned by Alan Cone and Graham Reeve. Cone helmed her in the Waveney race and had a good lead but lost out eventually to Geoff Little and Sue Harper in Naiad. Cone and Reeve then swapped places for the Mixed Keelboats race and finished third (and first Waveney).

Dinghy action from Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club Picture: Claire GrasbyDinghy action from Waveney & Oulton Broad Yacht Club Picture: Claire Grasby

The Spring series at Rollesby started with the first Eels Foot Race of the year.

Fourteen boat set out but, as the wind died after the start, the short beat across the Broad turned into a torturous affair.

Mike McNamara in his Harrier with Ian and Sharon Ayres in their Leader came round the windward mark ahead of the rest. After a slow broad reach down the Broad the wind picked up and once through the cut, the fleet had a good sail in the bigger Broad. McNamara led the fleet home. The Leader and the Hansons in their Wayfarer were not far behind having made good use of spinnakers. Handicap results gave the Ayres a win with McNamara second and Val and Chris Hanson third.

The second race with a figure-of-eight course saw a clear win for McNamara with Ian Hanson in a solo second and the Leader third. Three Lasers and a Wayfarer stayed for the afternoon race. Keith Sykes Laser took the win, two seconds in front of Bob Sparrow and Steve in the Wayfarer.

Six Norfolk Dinghies started another downriver race at Norwich Frostbites on Sunday going against the chilly easterly breeze but with the ebb tide.

Sam Woodcock in B20 Kelpie and crewed by Geoff Coulthard made the best start closely followed by David Mackley in B6 Lucifer beyond repair, crewed by Linda Allen. Just under the flyover Mackley took the lead briefly but lost it again in the groove. Woodcock went on to win the race which finished halfway up the stretch to Bramerton. Mackley finished second, roughly 30 seconds later and third was Danny Tyrrell in B53 Twinkle, crewed by Bruce Thompson over three minutes back.

On the return, Pat Woodcock, sailing B61 Echo and crewed by Jan Hubbard, made by far the best start and sailed through the grove still in the lead until the flyover but then chose the wrong side of the river and was passed by all of the others. Tyrrell made the best of it and led the run down Whitlingham Reach improving his lead all the way and finished first at the clubhouse. Behind him in the chasing group was Linda Allen sailing B6 Lucifer beyond repair, crewed by David Mackley. She broke away from the others towards the finish to come in second behind Tyrrell by only 16 seconds. The remaining four boats finished within eight seconds of each other, led in third position by Stephen Ellingham in B30 Willa whose crew Jet fell asleep in the bottom of the boat, such was the excitement.

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